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Thread: Too much nutrient?

  1. Default Too much nutrient?

    Hello, I think I made a major mistake and added way to much nutrient and am really bummin. I waited until I had about 4 days of strong fermentation before adding. I added two teaspoons of a concoction called "Yeast Nutrient or Fermax" purchased in a small plastic bag (no proprietary jar) from my LHBS. The batch is 5 gallons of Orange Blossom Show. AFTER adding the nutrient I read online that the dosage for Fermex should be .5 grams/5 gal. My fermentation is still going strong. I have another 5 gallons which I did not add the nutrient to, as I wanted to do an experiment to see what effect the nutrient would have on fermentation. Did I drastically change the flavor of my mead? Should I start all over? I had such high hopes and now I am bumming.

    Just became a patron and will do introductions later. My partner thinks I spend way too much time brewing and wants to go do something (anything) in town NOW. You know the deal..... deenis

  2. #2

    Default Re: Too much nutrient?

    Hi Deenis,

    Looks like the dosage for Fermax is 1 gram per gallon and its is a mixture of DAP, dipotassium phosphate, magnesium sulfate, and autolyzed yeast. You did add a little too much but I wouldn't worry myself over it, I am sure your mead will be fine and there is no need for you to start over.

    I am sure some of the other meadmakers will chime in as they have more knowledge on nutrients than I do. So I would just relax , don't worry, and have a homebrew.

    Cheers,

    Jon

  3. Default Re: Too much nutrient?

    Hi Jon, thanks for the input. I did some more reading and found this: " If making wine from fresh or frozen juice (not processed - just straight grape juice), here are the recommended doses of DAP and Fermax™:
    - 1 gram DAP / liter
    - 1 gram Fermax™ / US gallon

    If making wine from a wine kit*, the proper doses would be:
    - 0.2 to 0.4 grams DAP / liter
    - 0.1 to 0.2 grams Fermax™ / US gallon
    *Some juice in cheaper wine kits can be very low in nutrients and low in solid matter that usually assists in keeping the yeast in suspension even during active fermentation. Another factor to consider regarding juice from concentrate and kits is the fact that there is usually very little to no insoluble, particulate matter present. The absence of particulate matter allows the yeast to settle rapidly during the period that there is very little fermentation activity. This is especially true with cool temperature fermentations."


    There was no mention of honey mead dosage. I was calculating the dosage for a Wine Kit, which is wrong. I should have been using the dosage for fresh or frozen juice, because of the excellent suspension of yeast that honey provides. I was thinking that I added 20 X's too much nutrient . However, as you pointed out, I did add to much (2 times) the recommended dosage. I should have used one teaspoon versus two (one teaspoon = 5grams). Two times versus twenty times...I am feeling alittle better. In the future I am going to spread the dose of nutrient (if I use it at all) over a longer fermentation period versus one dump and go.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Too much nutrient?

    It's suggested that you add nutrient at the end of the lag phase (usually 24 to 48 hours after pitching when the must starts to show bubbles/kreusen on the top), and the 1/3 sugar break (where 1/3 of the available sugar has been consumed by the yeast).

    Some super high gravity musts are fed at the 2/3 sugar break as well.

    I only do the end of lag phase and at the 1/3 break. I taste the nutrient flavor so I am careful with my additions.

    If you find you've added too much and taste the flavor, you could try adding more honey or some fruit juice. This would give a new food source for the sucessful yeasts to go to town on and create a need for the additional nutrient. This is called "step-feeding" and can lead to a super-high alcohol mead.

    I step-fed a peach mead into rocket fuel accidentally. It is almost 3 years old and is barely drinkable. I am thinking I'll try it again at 5 years.

    Leonora
    "Spanky, Sparky, Buckwheat the Fourteenth - doing the right thing starts first thing in the morning, not after you are caught." -- John Criton FarScape

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Too much nutrient?

    Quote Originally Posted by Leonora
    .....snip.....I only do the end of lag phase and at the 1/3 break. I taste the nutrient flavor so I am careful with my additions....snip....
    This is more than likely a result of using nutrient derived from ammonia salts (DAP) after the 1/3 sugar break. Post 1/3 sugar break nutrients should only contain ammino nitrogen which is not a salt and won't impart that salty flavor. Whenever DAP is added post 1/3 the yeast will not utilize it and it may leave a metallic/salty flavor/aroma/character in your mead. Honestly, there are few people that can discern this flavor if the nutrient dosage is within guidelines. However if the dosage is large all bets are off.

    Hope that helps,

    Oskaar
    Is it tasty . . . precious?

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2008
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    Chicago, Land of Corruption
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    Default Re: Too much nutrient?

    I made a similar mistake on my first melomel, so instead of starting a new thread, I'm hijacking this one. I misread the bottle of ammonium phosphate and used TBL spoons instead of TSP. I caught myself half way, so I ended up putting about 8 tsp instead of the recommended 5.

    What is my best option? Should I just let it go and see how it tastes and age it a few more months? Or should I buy another primary, split my batch in half and add more water and honey. There is a lot of fermentation activity right now.

    Here's my recipe:

    18 lbs. of honey
    5 gallons of water
    Lalvin 71B-1122 wine yeast
    8 tsp of yeast nutrient
    Will be racked onto 12 lbs of strawberries.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Too much nutrient?

    Let it go for a while so it can age and integrate. Check it every couple of months to see where it is tastewise. You might consider racking on to some oak in about six months if the salty taste persists.
    Is it tasty . . . precious?

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