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Thread: Hello World | Back-sweetening question

  1. Default Hello World | Back-sweetening question

    Let me start by saying hello to other members here. Well no, I am not really a meadGod, but a meadn00b to be more precise. I am here to learn about meads and the username is reserved for future.

    As we speak, a test batch of 2.25 litre PET bottle of mead is being fermented in my cupboard and that is my second brew (the first one got horribly wrong ). I have taken a lot more precautions this time and all looking great till now.

    My question is, that how do I back-sweeten this without blowing up my fridge? I tried finding suggestions in the internet and apparently, sodium metabisulphite doesn't kill the yeast. Is this true? I want to pour some mango syrup (about 1-2%) and sweeten the batch. I fear it will start fermentation again inside the bottle.

    Also, how much sodium metabisulphite do you recommend adding to 2.25litre of final product if the chemical was 100% pure?

    Thanks for reading my first thread nevertheless. I will try to post a picture about my brew later in this thread if that's allowed.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Connecticut
    Posts
    419

    Default

    So 2.25 liter is about 1/2 gallon. You will have yeast sediment (lees) on the bottom of the bottle when it's done fermenting. You will need to transfer the mead to another container (via siphon) to leave that lees behind before you can stabilize it with chemicals. The 2 chemicals are potassium metabisulfite and potassium sorbate. It's the sorbate that inhibits fermentation.

    Such a small volume will be hard to dose. The sulfite in pure form is very powerful, only 1/4 teaspoon (TSP) for 5-6 gallons. However, it can be had in a solid tablet form, called Campden tablets. One crushed tablet treats one imperial gallon. The sorbate is typically 1/2 TSP per gallon, you'll need slightly less than 1/4 TSP I guess.
    Dave from New Haven County

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Saratoga Springs , NY
    Posts
    1,378

    Default

    Hi meadGod - and welcome

    Maylar, While it is true that K-meta in crystal form is hard to "dose" the simplest way to dose anything is to make a large batch such that the dose for a small quantity is quite measurable. I don't have my notes with me but if mix enough K-meta with enough water to dose a gallon with say 1 teaspoon that is not a difficult thing to measure. You may prefer to mix the K-meta with enough water for you to add say, 10 ml rather than the 4.9 ml of "teaspoon".

    But that said, I think one problem with stabilizing that many novices fail to recognize is that if there is a very large colony of viable yeast cells in your mead simply adding the stabilizing chemicals has very little effect. For one thing, lab cultured yeast have a huge tolerance for K-meta compared to wild yeast. SO what you need to do is be patient and stabilize after you have racked (siphoned) your mead from the yeast. Each time you rack you remove a large proportion of the yeast population assuming , of course, that you are racking at reasonable intervals to allow much of the yeast to drop out of suspension. (in your primary you might want to stir the yeast INTO suspension to ensure their activity...

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