Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 38

Thread: Traditional Short Mead

  1. Default Traditional Short Mead

    Somebody recently allowed me to sample a few different meads and it seems to be something I quite like so I decided to try to make some on my own. I think it would be neat if I could have a bottle of mead that I made for new years. I did not like the spiced or fruit meads as much as I liked the traditional meads I tried.

    All the short mead recipes I seem to find are mixed with fruit. Would it be possible to make a traditional mead that will have a decent taste in that time period?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Tennessee Valley
    Posts
    1,128

    Default

    Welcome to GotMead?

    I think the thing with fruit and spices is they cover flaws in the meads so you can drink them sooner. Traditionals let every flaw show through. Most flaws will blend and mellow with time.

    With only a few months you might be able to pull off a cyser. I have read of batches ready in 8 weeks. Otherwise one of Joe's Quick Meads might work.

    For a really great mead, you are looking at a 12 to 18 month lag time. Just in time for new years 2012!

    Maybe someone will post who knows more than I.
    “Give a man a beer, waste an hour. Teach a man to brew, and waste a lifetime!”

    slàinte mhath

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    1,519

    Default

    I just finished racking a pure show mead using Red Star Cuvee yeast and very high quality honey. It's about 1 month old, and currently very drinkable. Granted, I started with an SG of 1.120 and is now sitting around 1.008, so it's very hot with alcohol in the back of the palate, but it still retains the sweet notes of good mead in the front, so that kick come out of nowhere.

    Long story short, you should be able to make a tasty traditional before New Years provided you start with high quality ingredients.

    Happy mazering!
    Find what you like, and hone it to perfection.

    And don't serve dodgy mead!

  4. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by YogiBearMead726 View Post
    I just finished racking a pure show mead using Red Star Cuvee yeast and very high quality honey. It's about 1 month old, and currently very drinkable. Granted, I started with an SG of 1.120 and is now sitting around 1.008, so it's very hot with alcohol in the back of the palate, but it still retains the sweet notes of good mead in the front, so that kick come out of nowhere.

    Long story short, you should be able to make a tasty traditional before New Years provided you start with high quality ingredients.

    Happy mazering!

    Did you just aim for a little more alcohol than the yeast could convert or did you stop the fermentation when it got to a certain level?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Ithaca, NY
    Posts
    4,958

    Default

    You can make a traditional mead quickly. To ensure success (i.e. being able to drink it soon), follow the basic tenets of all the quick meads: low alcohol and sweet. I would suggest something along these lines:

    Mostly mild, floral, sweet honey. Avoid using a lot of heavy stuff like buckwheat honey. Clover, orange blossom, thistle are good. Wildflower honey can be good, best to taste it first or ask what the major constituents are.

    About 12% abv.

    71B yeast, it's known for quick drinkability.

    Ferment fully, crash cool and rack onto stabilizing chemicals. Backsweeten to taste, I'd say somewhere in the neighborhood of 1.010-1.015 would be sweet enough for most people without being cloying. Go by taste if you can, everyone is different.

    You can probably have a mead like this done fermenting in 2 weeks or less, crash cooled and fairly clear in another week, and stabilized and sweetened in the next week. Let it hang out and finish clearing for another month and you should be able to bottle it early December, giving it some time to mellow out in the bottle before you drink it. Good luck!
    Want to see something added to the GotMead Glossary? PM me! Didn't know we had a glossary? Check the top row of links.

  6. Default

    Would Lavlin EC-1118 work well for this? I would have to stop the fermentation at the right gravity obviously.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    1,519

    Default

    Honestly? This was my first time using Red Star Cuvee, and I forgot to check what it could handle beforehand. I just let it got until dry (also probably why it burns on the way down). It's also easier to stabilize and backsweeten to taste rather than aim for a desired finishing point. As long as there is sugar availible, assuming the yeast aren't at their alcohol tolerance, the yeast will try to keep fermenting. The one thing under our control is the starting gravity, which tells us how much potential ABV assuming it ferments to dry.
    Find what you like, and hone it to perfection.

    And don't serve dodgy mead!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    1,519

    Default

    What akueck said. Haha
    Find what you like, and hone it to perfection.

    And don't serve dodgy mead!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    San Francisco, CA
    Posts
    1,519

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ruinarion View Post
    Would Lavlin EC-1118 work well for this? I would have to stop the fermentation at the right gravity obviously.
    I don't have a bunch of experience with EC-1118, but the mead I have used it on has had fruit and has not been very drinkable quickly. Just my two cents on it.
    Find what you like, and hone it to perfection.

    And don't serve dodgy mead!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Calgary AB Canada
    Posts
    4,066

    Default

    I would stay away from that yeast for this, it's a tank and I doubt you'd be able to stop it, and frankly it's just not that great unless you're wanting to make something sparkling.

    For young mead, and also for newbies I'd go for 71B. It requires little for nutrients, tastes good young. One of my favourite yeasts, just make sure not to let the mead sit on the sediment for too many weeks.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    Tennessee Valley
    Posts
    1,128

    Default

    Ahhh...still so much to learn.

    But isn't this place just great.
    “Give a man a beer, waste an hour. Teach a man to brew, and waste a lifetime!”

    slàinte mhath

  12. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AToE View Post
    I would stay away from that yeast for this, it's a tank and I doubt you'd be able to stop it, and frankly it's just not that great unless you're wanting to make something sparkling.

    For young mead, and also for newbies I'd go for 71B. It requires little for nutrients, tastes good young. One of my favourite yeasts, just make sure not to let the mead sit on the sediment for too many weeks.
    What makes a yeast great for making a sparkling mead/wine? Just curious because I usually brew beer and everything I brew gets carbonated.

    If it requires little nutrients would it still be good to add nutrients?

    Would 1 packet of 71B be good for a 2 gallon batch aiming for 12% abv? I am a little overwhelmed with all the mead info I have been looking at but I don't think I have found a pitching rate calculator for mead or wine.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Calgary AB Canada
    Posts
    4,066

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ruinarion View Post
    What makes a yeast great for making a sparkling mead/wine? Just curious because I usually brew beer and everything I brew gets carbonated.
    EC1118 is good because of it's very high ABV tolerance and that it is fairly neutral, and also that it is one of the strains that is good to let the mead/wine sit on the lees for ages (considering there will be lees in the bottle this is obviously a must. 71B for example is no good for this). Beer is easier because the yeast is almost always much higher ABV tolerance than is necessary for the job, wheras wine/mead is much higher ABV.

    If it requires little nutrients would it still be good to add nutrients?
    Yes, the nice thing is you don't have to be too paranoid though, and it won't cause you greif if you accidentally use too little (some yeasts go nuts producing sulphur odours if you don't feed them enough nutrient, RC212 is an example).

    Would 1 packet of 71B be good for a 2 gallon batch aiming for 12% abv? I am a little overwhelmed with all the mead info I have been looking at but I don't think I have found a pitching rate calculator for mead or wine.
    I'm guessing that's a 5g packet (I often buy 8g packets as well) and yes that is perfectly fine for that amount. 5g is almost always a good amount, unless it's a 5/6 gallon batch with a very high SG, or a giant batch, then you'd want more. It's also not too much for even a 1 gal batch (apparently there is such a thing).

  14. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by AToE View Post
    EC1118 is good because of it's very high ABV tolerance and that it is fairly neutral, and also that it is one of the strains that is good to let the mead/wine sit on the lees for ages (considering there will be lees in the bottle this is obviously a must. 71B for example is no good for this). Beer is easier because the yeast is almost always much higher ABV tolerance than is necessary for the job, wheras wine/mead is much higher ABV.

    You say that 71B isn't good for leaving on the lees. Does that mean I need to rack it off the lees early or does that refer to extended aging? Will there be problems if it is bottled too long and sediment forms?

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Calgary AB Canada
    Posts
    4,066

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by ruinarion View Post
    You say that 71B isn't good for leaving on the lees. Does that mean I need to rack it off the lees early or does that refer to extended aging? Will there be problems if it is bottled too long and sediment forms?
    You won't have to rack out of primary fermentation early, but I would rack again within 1-1.5 months after that when the bulk of the lees have dropped.

    As to the bottles... yes, I would imagine that if you bottled it really early you might get enough sediment to cause you problems. That said, you'll probably have drank it all long before this becomes an issue!

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Ithaca, NY
    Posts
    4,958

    Default

    Unless you bottle when it's cloudy, the amount of sediment you might drop in the bottle shouldn't do much harm. Fining agents are an option if things aren't clear after a few months and you want to move it along.

    For a quick, easy-to-drink kind of mead, 71B is king. IIRC, this is the yeast used for Nouveau wines in France which are consumed only a few months after harvest.

    5-8 g of yeast is fine for 2 gallons. You do want to add nutrients, but you should be able to do so without constant monitoring if you use 71B. Things to pick up include GoFerm, FermaidK, and DAP; these three will get you through most nutrients needs. Yeast hulls (aka ghosts) are nice to have around just in case. For 2 gallons, adding ~2-4 g of DAP and ~2-4 g of FermaidK at the first sign of activity plus another ~2-4 g of FermaidK a few days later should be enough (rehydrate with GoFerm too).
    Want to see something added to the GotMead Glossary? PM me! Didn't know we had a glossary? Check the top row of links.

  17. #17

    Default

    You could also always try a smoother. I have never used one and do not personally know anyone that has, but I have read posts from some people that say it is a quick fix to make a harsh wine more drinkable. I personally prefer to let time do the smoothing for me.

    Midwest has this one:
    http://www.midwestsupplies.com/super-smoother.html

    My personal recommendation, go ahead and buy bottled mead this year for your holidays, start your mead now and you will have your own for next year. Also, if you always want some mead around the house, you will always have to have a batch brewing.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Pittsburgh, PA
    Posts
    630

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by crimsondrac View Post
    You could also always try a smoother. I have never used one and do not personally know anyone that has, but I have read posts from some people that say it is a quick fix to make a harsh wine more drinkable. I personally prefer to let time do the smoothing for me.

    Midwest has this one:
    http://www.midwestsupplies.com/super-smoother.html

    My personal recommendation, go ahead and buy bottled mead this year for your holidays, start your mead now and you will have your own for next year. Also, if you always want some mead around the house, you will always have to have a batch brewing.
    There's a brief discussion on super-smoother here.

    I'm in complete agreement that that "time" would be the better choice.
    Age improves with mead, even more than mead improves with age.

  19. Default

    Well my ingredients should be at my place today or tomorrow. So I plan on getting it started on Saturday afternoon or Sunday depending on how my schedule turns out.

    I don't plan on using super smoother I would rather let it age naturally. I am thinking about making another batch and making it a higher gravity but use a yeast that will dry it out faster and let that condition until next year but it would still be nice to make something that will be ready by the holidays other than beer since quite a bit of my family doesn't drink beer.

  20. Default

    I've been reading the troubleshooting section and I see a lot of talk about stuck fermentation due to too low of a pH level. I am looking at just using yeast, honey, nutrient, Goferm, and water. Is it likely to have too low of a pH?

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Search terms too short?
    By icedmetal in forum Site Suggestions, New Toys and Tools
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 12-31-2009, 10:58 AM
  2. My first batch ever seems to have stopped short...
    By paulfmoss in forum Mead NewBees - Post your Questions Here
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 10-11-2009, 03:04 PM
  3. short question regarding my calculations
    By Corvus in forum Mead NewBees - Post your Questions Here
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-01-2006, 10:56 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
  •