FerndalePalooza!30% Off Pairing Mead and Food!
Page 3 of 3 FirstFirst 123
Results 41 to 58 of 58
  1. #41

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by akueck View Post
    I've picked up BA-11 at MoreBeer in Concord.

    Don't bother making a starter, it's a waste of time and resources when using dry yeast. If you need more yeast than comes in a single pack, use two.
    Cool, I'm going to swing by Morebeer tomorrow and hopefully get some BA11. I can't go Saturday because I'm having company.

    One of my brewing buddies started making starters for his beers, and he now tells me that a starter is always good. I told him just what you said, that I thought from my reading (Schramm, Palmer) that it wasn't necessarily with dry yeast, but he didn't believe me because he said it acclimates the yeast to the fermentables or something.

  2. #42
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Evergreen, CO (west of and above the Denver smog!)
    Posts
    5,794

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by jonalexdeval View Post
    One of my brewing buddies started making starters for his beers, and he now tells me that a starter is always good. I told him just what you said, that I thought from my reading (Schramm, Palmer) that it wasn't necessarily with dry yeast, but he didn't believe me because he said it acclimates the yeast to the fermentables or something.
    Nice theory - but from much practice and backed up by lots of research by the wine yeast manufacturers (principally Lallemand), it truly is not necessary for the average wine or mead must. There are special cases where a starter may be indicated, but in general it isn't necessary if the yeast are properly rehydrated first.

    But, if it makes him feel better to do a starter for wines and/or meads, then he should do what minimizes his stress potential. Remember RDWHAH? The first three words are relax, don't worry,...
    Na zdrowie!

    Wayne B.

  3. #43
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Ithaca, NY
    Posts
    4,958

    Default

    To stress the point, starters are VERY GOOD for commercial liquid yeasts (both the Wyeast smack packs and Whitelabs tubes) and yeast you propagate yourself, which is common with beer yeasts (I have some in my fridge now). If you get yeast in slants, you obviously know that starters are necessary. The yeast in the liquid packs are (hopefully) alive and kicking, waiting for sugar to eat. But, the cell count is too low in a single tube for a 5-gallon batch of higher than about SG 1.050-60. From the yeast gurus I've heard talk/write, you want to control the population increase of your yeast during fermentation and keep it at about a 4- or 5-fold increase from pitching to completion. If you take a tube of yeast and put it into your 1.110 mead, the population will have to increase by roughly 10-12 times, which puts the yeast under stress (either from the repeated budding or from nutrient starvation when trying to bud). And the ~1.050 number assumes all the yeast in the liquid culture are viable, which is only true if your yeast is very fresh. So even with a wort/must in the "safe" range, it's still a good idea to make a starter to reestablish the health of your culture after it has languished in a refrigerator for weeks/months. If you do cold fermentations (lagers), you need to pitch even more yeast and starters become even more important. You could buy 2, 3, 5 packs of liquid yeast and skip the starter, but that gets expensive.

    Now dry yeast is a different animal. Being dried, they live a lot longer when properly stored. This means your retention of viable cells is higher over time. Also, there are just more of them in a pack of dry yeast than you get in the liquid pack. In fact, the directions on many packages say 'sprinkle on the wort' which will end up killing a significant number of yeast as they rehydrate in sugar-water, and still there are more viable yeast than if you used a liquid package. The low cost vs. liquid yeast means it's easier, faster, and cheaper to buy a second sachet instead of making a starter. Of course, you can make a starter if you like. And if it brings peace of mind, it's worth it. But don't be bullied by anyone telling you it is necessary all the time. It's not the starter itself that is important, it is the health and count of the yeast you pitch that matters. Achieve those however you like.
    Want to see something added to the GotMead Glossary? PM me! Didn't know we had a glossary? Check the top row of links.

  4. #44
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    The Fusel Shack, in the swamp west of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida
    Posts
    8,713

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by akueck View Post
    But, the cell count is too low in a single tube for a 5-gallon batch of higher than about SG 1.050-60. From the yeast gurus I've heard talk/write, you want to control the population increase of your yeast during fermentation and keep it at about a 4- or 5-fold increase from pitching to completion. If you take a tube of yeast and put it into your 1.110 mead, the population will have to increase by roughly 10-12 times, which puts the yeast under stress (either from the repeated budding or from nutrient starvation when trying to bud).
    Jonalexdeval, I think a key point is that starters are more important for beers, because generally speaking, you don't aerate beers. Even a package of ADY only has enough sterols for perhaps 5-6 generations which may be enough for a 5 gallon batch at a low gravity, but could come up short. In order to increase 10-12 times or more, the yeast need oxygen exposure to develop the sterols and lipids in the cell membranes.

    You can do that in a starter, and brewers do it often as it allows oxygen exposure for the yeast without oxygen touching the wort. For wine and mead makers, oxygen exposure to must is usually less of a concern, and so you can aerate a must to allow the yeast to make enough divisions to accomplish the job. Even with a packet of liquid yeast, as long as it swells and shows viability, just pouring it in will work if the must gets the necessary aeration.

    Obviously, with a slant, you'd want to make a starter to make sure the yeast are viable. Another special circumstance would be high gravity musts where pitching a larger biomass is beneficial for complete fermentation and pitching multiple packets of yeast or creating a starter definitely is warranted. Otherwise, a starter is nice, and proves the yeast are viable, but it's certainly optional.

    Medsen
    Lanne pase toujou pi bon
    (Past years are always better)

  5. #45

    Default

    Thanks for the informative posts. Medsen: by "aerate", you are talking about introducing oxygen during the first few days of fermentation itself?

    My impression was that you always aerate at pitching (beer and wine), but never after fermentation. As for during fermentation, I wasn't quite clear on that... I knew you could stir the must... but you are saying I can shake it during active fermentation? (and maybe I should do that with this one considering Oskaar recommended keeping the must "moving"?).

    Edit: ok, maybe I'll answer my own question here. As far as oxygenation damage goes, it seems to me it wouldn't matter whether aeration is done at pitching or during fermentation. So I presume you mean aerating anytime before fermentation completes.

    So... beer can by aerated during fermentation then also? It's just a matter of not over-doing it (as when using an O2 tank)?

    Am I just confusing myself here?
    Last edited by jonalexdeval; 12-11-2009 at 02:48 AM.

  6. #46
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Calgary AB Canada
    Posts
    4,066

    Default

    Common practice with mead s to aerate only to the 1/3 point of the fermentation, at most the 1/2 way point. Some cases call for even more, but that is the general idea, and people like to do a vigorous aeration at least once a day for that period, better if 2 or 3 times a day though.

    Hard to say how many days it takes to get to the 1/3 sugar break (for example, if you started with a gravity of 1.099 the one third break would be around 1.066), it could take several days, or it could take place during the first day, a lot of factors are involved in that, which is why it's sometimes a good idea to take frequency SG measurements.

    EDIT: Beer I think you need to be more careful with, but I'm not a beer maker.

  7. #47

    Default

    For beer, unless you are acting on advice for a specific recipe that is given by someone who knows what they are talking about, I would only aerate your beer when pitching. I remember reading some commentary by Oskaar on how some types of beer can be improved by effective aeration during fermentation, but to my best knowledge it is uncommon in homebrewing because of the risks involved if it is done improperly.

    I did a quick search and found that thread here.

  8. #48
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Evergreen, CO (west of and above the Denver smog!)
    Posts
    5,794

    Default

    There are benefits to aeration (oxygenation) during the first 1/3 of primary fermentation for just about any wort/must that will ferment to a final ethanol concentration roughly above 10% ABV. That is very high for most beer worts, but on the low end of what we try to achieve with most wine or mead musts.

    The reasons that you don't want to inject too much O2 for beer is that the yeast are not chewing through enough sugars to render their resulting environment overly toxic, so they don't need as much O2 early on in their life cycle to promote vigorous reproduction and cell wall development. And, if you over-supply the wort with O2, enough will remain in solution after the yeast have finished fermenting that the beer will end up being somewhat oxidized.

    In anything with a target above 10% ABV (again, this is a rough number, not an absolute), the yeast will be stressed by the ethanol they have to swim in during their latter stages of life, and so having enough O2 along with the necessary amount of nutrients (nitrogen, vitamins and other micronutrients) available to them early in the fermentation, which allows them to fully develop their cell wall defenses, is essential to ensuring that they can "go the distance."

    BTW, I don't swirl or stir most of my mead musts. I WTC (as in Whip The Cr@&) out of them until the 1/3 sugar break, usually by using a heavy duty stainless restaurant kitchen wire whisk to stir up the surface and get it exposed to as much air as possible. I'll do this at least a couple of times per day until I get to that 1/3 break. The yeast will use all the O2 that I can introduce this way, and oxidation of the final product never results.
    Na zdrowie!

    Wayne B.

  9. #49

    Default

    Cool. Thanks Wayneb. Maybe I'll just shake the bucket a few times during the first 1/3 of fermentation.

    Oh, and I found BA11 in Concord... last one on the shelf. I thawed the bananas and am cooking them right now in two crockpots... let them go for a few hours and then we'll get down to business... I'm not using any sulfites before pitching as I figured the banana fruit would be fine as long as I was careful not to touch it too much when peeling.

    Believe it or not, I've never actually balanced a must before to a specific gravity. I've always followed a recipe. I assume I just measure the gravity, add some water, measure again, etc. until I get there. I know you've got to have all your fermentable sugars in there and stirred around, but some of it won't measure (like the banana sludge and raisins)... when Oskaar says 1.130, I assume that takes into account the little extra sugar in the solids.

  10. #50

    Default

    Ok, quick question. I pitched yesterday after balancing to 1.130. Today, not yet 24 hours later, the gravity hasn't really changed (airlock is bubbling steadily, though not vigorously). I'm afraid the gravity went up a little above what I intended when I put the bananas in (they are steeping inside a set of tied-off pantyhose).

    Should I go and get another yeast packet and pitch it just in case? (I pitched 8 grams rehydrated BA11). Or will that not really help?

    I did whisk the surface like Wayneb said. Also following standard nutrient additions. And PH is good to go! (about 4.1 at this point)

    The whole thing is over 6 gallons... I had to rack some into a smaller container... but it tastes outrageously good... like liquid banana bread.
    Last edited by jonalexdeval; 12-13-2009 at 05:39 PM.

  11. #51
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Calgary AB Canada
    Posts
    4,066

    Default

    You should be fine, pitching more won't hurt anything if it's going to save you from loosing hair to stress, but it shouldn't be necessary. That is a pretty high starting gravity for 8 grams of yeast though, so they're probably just taking a little bit to get going.

  12. #52
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Ithaca, NY
    Posts
    4,958

    Default

    If you're diligent with the oxygenation and nutrients, 8 g of yeast should be enough. Also remember that the CO2 in the fermenting must will push the hydrometer up and you'll get readings higher than they actually are. Spin the hydrometer to dislodge the bubbles.
    Want to see something added to the GotMead Glossary? PM me! Didn't know we had a glossary? Check the top row of links.

  13. #53

    Default

    Does anyone know how long to leave a nylon stocking full of soggy cooked bananas in primary?

    I was thinking at least 2 weeks?

  14. #54

    Default Mashing

    What happens if you just mash and put in the bananas with pectic enzime?

  15. Default Bananas Foster Mead

    Greetings all!

    I completed the secondary fermentation on a Bananas Foster wine ( not technically a mead)... Here is what I did..

    I made a one gallon experimental batch :

    6 Bananas,
    one cup of brown sugar
    one cup honey
    two Cinnamon sticks

    process was simple syrup for the brown sugar, and cinnamon and water.. then into the primary, added water to cool.. at room temp added honey, and bananas, then pitched the yeast It was a Champagne yeast forgive me I have forgotten which one..

    After the secondary fermentation I procured some Appleton Estates Jamaican Rum.. and added about a shot.

    killed off the yeast.. ( campden tablets) and then let it sit for a few weeks.
    I back sweeted a glass and initial tastings were approved by quality control ( aka - the Mrs).. and tasting notes were .... ( drum roll)....

    Nothing like Bananas Foster at all !

    Very grapey, Chardoney esque a hint of citrus ( although there was none used).. a little caramel..and ripe hay.. wonderful stuff.. just not what I was looking for.. LOL Oh Happy Accidents !

    Peace,

    Mark..

  16. Default good recipe

    Quote Originally Posted by Oskaar View Post
    Well, um . . . hmmmm. Jack's site has some great recipes for wine to be sure, and I go there alot to see what's new in the wide open home winemaking scene. I also have a lot of respect for Jack Keller, not just for his site and for the wine he makes, but, he just does a great job of keeping people engaged and interested so my hat's off to Jack.

    Focusing on this recipe specifically I personally would make a number of changes and lose the tannin and acid, change the sugar to honey, leave out the skins and not heat the must.

    I'd slice the bananas and simmer them for a few hours in a fine mesh grain bag in a crock pot on the lowest setting. I would essentially use that reduced syrup to add to my must, and then go with the blend of raisins and spices used in spice cake (allspice, cinnamon, mace, nutmeg). Basically I'd translate my favorite chocolate spiced banana nut bread recipe to mead.

    I'd honey roast some walnuts and pecans then chop them coarsely and dangle them in a grain bag during fermentation. You'd want some pectic enzyme in the primary. I'd also add in some vanilla beans and about four good handfuls of cocoa nibs. In the mean time I'd be soaking some medium toast oak cubes in some cognac during the primary.

    So a 6 gallon primary yield recipe would look like:

    Oskaarz spicy banana nutz:

    15 lbs bananas, sliced and simmered, decant the supernate and reserve. Add slices to a grain bag and add to ferment.
    16 lbs honey (meadowfoam, macadamia nut, locust)
    2 qt Maple Syrup (Grade B dark amber)
    2 lbs dark (carmelized, not burnt!) honey roasted pecans and walnuts coarsely chopped
    1 lb sultanas, chopped
    5 vanilla beans
    3 nutmegs, cracked and smashed
    4 cloves, whole
    10-15 allspice berries, cracked and smashed
    3 cinnamon quills, crushed
    4 handfuls coacoa nibs, crushed
    2 oz medium toast American oak soaked in Cognac

    Balance must to about 1.130

    Check your pH something like this could go low on you and cause a sluggish ferment.

    I'd go with either 58W3 or BA11 for this puppy and be sure to rehydrate with GO-Ferm, and use a standard nutrient addition schedule. Keep the must moving during the fermentation. Moderate fermentation temperatures apply here so keep it right at 70 F.

    After the primary taste your mead and see where it may need adjustment to bring the flavors in to balance. Take your cognac soaked oak cubes and put them into your secondary vessel, rack the mead onto them and add any additional ingredients you may feel are necessary. If you feel this is lacking in acid (I don't think it will be but that's up to you) wait until the end before you bottle or keg to add acid as the chocolate and spices will add a sharpness to it as well.

    Maybe not so simple, but worth the effort.
    +1 on this recipe! I just made something very similar, using this recipe as inspiration and its turned out wonderful!

    Recipe as follows:

    7kg bananas
    6 vanilla pods, cut in half
    4 whole nutmegs, cracked
    6 cinnamon quills, broken in half
    200g dark Raisins, chopped
    250g Cocoa nibs
    60g Mixed-Roasted bourbon-soaked hickory chips
    11 lbs honey
    Mead yeast
    Nutrients
    DAP
    Pecto Enzyme
    Super-Klear

    Brewing:

    I boiled the bananas with the skin on. You don't want to boil long as the aroma is very volatile, and you lose it very quickly. As soon as it comes to the boil, you want to take it off. Next time, I would do it, as Oskaar said, without the skin. That means you put the pieces in a big strain bag and put it in your primary. This DOES give you a rich banana aroma, but it also can give you a bit of a stinky skunky smell, that doesn't go away for a couple of weeks of being in the secondary. If anyone has a better way to maintain aroma, I'm all ears. Maybe could try blending the bananas into a smoothy/soup then adding it? The skin left a really ugly grey color, but did disappear mid-way through the fermentation. SG: 1.082

    Half way through the fermentation, I added half the nutmeg, vanilla and cinnamon in a hop bag.

    Finished fermentation at 0.992 (giving an ABV of about 12%). Added super-klear, and then racked on to secondary with rest of the nutmeg, cinnamon and vanilla with the hickory (which was roasted to a medium-light and medium-dark toast, and then soaked on bourbon for a week) and bourbon tea.

    After a week, I removed the wood, and added the cacao nibs and raisins. Beautifully complex and slightly astringent. I pumped up the acidity to .55% with TA. Haven't back sweetened; leaving it nice and dry. After a few days, i removed the chocolate and raisins, cold crashed for a couple of days, and primed with some dark brown sugar. Bottled in beer bottles, and will age for 6 months.

    Won-der-ful!

    Thanks Oskaar for the recipe. Good luck to anyone else making this!

    bananamead.jpg
    Last edited by Chris200071; 01-23-2016 at 09:55 AM.

  17. Default

    So replying to this really old thread but wanted to weigh in for anyone searching archives of posts: I've got a banana mead aging in secondary right now that is crystal clear. What I did: I took bananas that were way over-ripe to the point of being candidates for banana nut bread that I had peeled and frozen and put them in my blender with enough water to top off the blender. Blended it up until they were completely liquid. I then poured that into my fermentation bucket with all my water and honey. Topped that up to my desired gallons of reverse osmosis water and then blended it all well with my stir paddles on the power drill. Once everything was well mixed I pitched my yeast and blended again. Added (per label quantities) of pectic enzyme and hydrated bentonite. Over the next several days I followed my normal yeast feeding and aeration schedule being careful not to let it foam all over the place (I keep my primary fermenter bucket inside of a large plastic tub to catch overflows). It WILL gas like mad for the first several days giving off a ton of CO2 so be careful! About a week or so after my stepped feeding and degassing was complete it had settled down enough for me to transfer to a glass carboy. Funnel poured it all in. Let it sit like that with my tilt hyrdometer floating in it until it had fermented out almost all the sugars. Added Potassium Sorbate and Metabisulfate per label, took out to my garage to cold crash. Left out in the garage in the very low 60's to cold crash for a week. Brought back in and it was very well crashed. Then racked it all through a vinbrite filter over into a clean carboy. It's sitting there now and it's a nice deep yellow and clear as anything! You can read a drivers manual cover through the 4 gallon carboy!

    https://flic.kr/p/26eiewp
    "I'll be honest - we're throwing science at the wall here to see what sticks. No idea what it'll do. Probably nothing. Best-case scenario, you might get some superpowers. Worst case, some tumors, which we'll cut out." - Cave Johnson

  18. #58

    Default

    He friend.

    I don't mean to be an ass. I'm sure you wouldn't have thought about it. It's not good forum correctness to dredge up old threads that have been dead for a long time. Just start a new thread if you feel the need to talk to current members. None of the people in this thread have even been around for a very long time.
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

Page 3 of 3 FirstFirst 123

Similar Threads

  1. The most simple mead recipe!
    By gisbrewmaster in forum Mead NewBees - Post your Questions Here
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 03-11-2008, 09:19 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •