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Thread: Maple syrup smell?

  1. Default Maple syrup smell?

    I have made no fewer than 20 batches of mead and all of them have turned out pretty well. However, they all have a strong smell of maple syrup. It's not particularly disagreeable, but not welcome either. This characteristic persists through aging and racking and has occurred with many varieties of yeast and honey.

    Any thoughts on what might be causing this?

    Thank you!

  2. #2

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    What variable never changes?
    In other words, do you always use the same honey, nutrients, yeast, carboy, etc.
    Figure that out and change it!
    Better brewing through science!

  3. #3
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    Have you checked if the container the honey comes in says "Maple Syrup" on the side?

    Or have you seen this:



    The Maple Syrup Fairy is a benign but mischievous little thing.

  4. Default

    The only things that have remained constant are the equipment (all-glass carboys) and the water. I live in a small city with a municipal well. My understanding from talking to other brewers is that the treated well water in this area is excellent for brewing because it contains moderate levels of minerals (limestone, fluoride, etc). I always boil the water to sterilize and remove chlorine. I have not tried water from other sources, but I doubt that the small changes in water quality would impart strong "maple syrup" smells.

  5. #5
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    OK. 20 batches all smelling of maple syrup? Have you had others make the same observation?




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  6. #6

    Default Maple syrup smell?

    Quote Originally Posted by blaklite View Post
    The only things that have remained constant are the equipment (all-glass carboys) and the water. I live in a small city with a municipal well. My understanding from talking to other brewers is that the treated well water in this area is excellent for brewing because it contains moderate levels of minerals (limestone, fluoride, etc). I always boil the water to sterilize and remove chlorine. I have not tried water from other sources, but I doubt that the small changes in water quality would impart strong "maple syrup" smells.
    Well, if the water and carboy are constant, you have no choice but to change them and see if it improves. Buy a 1 gallon jug of spring water and ferment with that water directly in the jug. If it resolves the problem, then you found the issue no matter how unlikely it may seem.

    Remember, Doing exactly the same thing and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity.
    Better brewing through science!

  7. #7
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    You may also want to try treating your water with campden tablets instead of by boiling. If your local water treatment plant is using chloramines instead of chlorine it won't boil out, but can be removed by treating with a crushed campden tablet. Although I didn't think the results of those in mead were supposed to smell like maple syrup?

    By maple syrup are you referring to sweetness, minerality, or both; and are you making sweet or dry meads?
    Bees stole my signature file!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by skunkboy View Post
    You may also want to try treating your water with campden tablets instead of by boiling. If your local water treatment plant is using chloramines instead of chlorine it won't boil out, but can be removed by treating with a crushed campden tablet. Although I didn't think the results of those in mead were supposed to smell like maple syrup?

    By maple syrup are you referring to sweetness, minerality, or both; and are you making sweet or dry meads?
    Goes without saying that maple syrup is concentrated maple tree sap. Are there maple trees or fir trees near your meadery?

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