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  1. Default Adding more Honey Mid-Fermentation

    Howdy all,

    if I have a yeast capable of appx. 18% ABV tolerance, and the yeast was pitched into a 1.100 SG must, I believe I can add sugars/honey into the must (lets say when ferment reaches 1.050) to bring the SG back to 1.100 to leverage the high ABV tolerance and keep fermenting.... right?

    what is the calculation to ensure I add only the amount of honey needed to obtain max ABV, at any SG in time and ensure I don't go over the 1.100 tolerance?

    so ... are the calculations as simple as this: max ABV - current ABV = additional ABV ?

    where 'additional ABV' would be used to determine the SG points to be added.
    and ABV = (OG - SG) x 131

    assuming my yeast should not be in an SG over 1.100, here is an example:

    max ABV - current ABV = additional ABV
    18% - 6% = 12%
    12% = ( TG - 1.000 ) x 131 where TG is the targeted SG to increase the must to get to 18%
    TG = 1.091
    I then would take my currently 1.050 fermenting must and raise the SG to 1.091 to get a final ABV of 18%.

    does that work out right?

  2. #2
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    Hi - just curious, why do you have a '1.100 tolerance'? Why not start with a SG like 1.135 to work to that 18% if that's what you're going for?

  3. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by 4give View Post
    Hi - just curious, why do you have a '1.100 tolerance'? Why not start with a SG like 1.135 to work to that 18% if that's what you're going for?
    I've been under the impression that yeast can't handle such a high initial gravity. for the yeast I'musing the specifications don't indicate their tolerance to high original gravity. I thought the cutoff was around 1.110-1.115. but also, in this case, I changed my mind along the way, after the recipe was in progress.

    the two yeasts I'm using are lalvin K1-V1116 and EC1118. my initial intent was as bone dry as I could go but now I also want to leverage the higher ABV tolerance (since I'm going all the way to practically zero leftover sugars).

  4. #4

    Default

    What you are proposing is called step feeding.
    Yes its possible.
    I do t know what you plan to do with this mead, but an 18% bone dry traditional mead using EC 1118 is going to taste pretty harsh.
    It the purpose is blending with another mead, go for it.


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  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lumenbeing View Post
    What you are proposing is called step feeding.
    Yes its possible.
    I do t know what you plan to do with this mead, but an 18% bone dry traditional mead using EC 1118 is going to taste pretty harsh.
    It the purpose is blending with another mead, go for it.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Nothing ten years of aging can't help out a little
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    Default

    Just my two cents - Just because your car can hit 120 MPH does not mean that you want to put your foot on the pedal to race through Manhattan at that speed and likewise. just because the yeast CAN ferment to 18% does not mean that that is a good idea. Driving at 25 MPH (I think the limit in NYC is these days) may make far better sense. What you or the yeast CAN do is one thing. What you or the yeast SHOULD do is not always the same thing.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by bernardsmith View Post
    Just my two cents - Just because your car can hit 120 MPH does not mean that you want to put your foot on the pedal to race through Manhattan at that speed and likewise. just because the yeast CAN ferment to 18% does not mean that that is a good idea. Driving at 25 MPH (I think the limit in NYC is these days) may make far better sense. What you or the yeast CAN do is one thing. What you or the yeast SHOULD do is not always the same thing.
    So true. But this is something every new mead makers do or so it seems.
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

  8. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Squatchy View Post
    So true. But this is something every new mead makers do or so it seems.
    I probably would've done the same thing, but here in TN, places with just a beer license are limited to 10.2 ABV beverages, so I was trying to keep the stuff I make near that. This past weekend though while visiting some breweries/taprooms in AL, I tried a mead that was 19% (Viking Blod from Dansk Mjd) that was amazing.

  9. Default

    Thanks Lumen, "step feeding" was the helpfull hint and opened up some good reading.

    All,

    I still don't exactly find any calculations to help me understand the ABV potential I have at any given gravity after honey additions. I think I can't plan a must and predictably know the final ABV with any post pitch additions.

    however, from all the theory I read, I like to think that smaller more regular honey additions, early in the ferment, are the best step feeding method. I suggest that 10 points of sugar are going to be just over 1% ABV; or in effect the same ABV produced by the accumulated gravities.

    for example:

    start with 1.100 at pitch (13%ABV)
    when SG drops to 1.075, increase SG to 1.085 with honey (+1%ABV)
    repeat that 3 more times (untill?, if?)
    accumulated gravity is 1.140 and that ABV would be near 18% when the ferment fizzels out at 1.000.

    is that reasonable?

    also, I Noticed this thread it's possible someone has considered this and especially with the question on rationed feedings or all up front feeding:

    http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthr...t=step+feeding

  10. Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Trenchie View Post
    Thanks Lumen, "step feeding" was the helpfull hint and opened up some good reading.

    All,

    I still don't exactly find any calculations to help me understand the ABV potential I have at any given gravity after honey additions. I think I can't plan a must and predictably know the final ABV with any post pitch additions.

    however, from all the theory I read, I like to think that smaller more regular honey additions, early in the ferment, are the best step feeding method. I suggest that 10 points of sugar are going to be just over 1% ABV; or in effect the same ABV produced by the accumulated gravities.

    for example:

    start with 1.100 at pitch (13%ABV)
    when SG drops to 1.075, increase SG to 1.085 with honey (+1%ABV)
    repeat that 3 more times (untill?, if?)
    accumulated gravity is 1.140 and that ABV would be near 18% when the ferment fizzels out at 1.000.

    is that reasonable?

    also, I Noticed this thread it's possible someone has considered this and especially with the question on rationed feedings or all up front feeding:

    http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthr...t=step+feeding
    Have you tried the mead calculator?




    http://gotmead.com/blog/the-mead-calculator/

    Sent from my SM-A520W using Tapatalk

  11. Default

    thanks Farmboy, After wrestling with the calculator for a little while, it does seem to do these types of calculations. though I'll need some practice to get it nailed down.


    now off to my cauldron.

  12. #12

    Default

    Early one when I first started making mead. Some were step feeding the honey at the end of the process to try and get a bigger ABV. I never take anything I read on public forums as an absolute and have to mess with it myself, so I know from experience if it's true or not. In my opinion, it's not any more productive at reaching a higher ABV than doing the mid ferment single addition. I have also learned how to just start at super high gravity and go about that in two ways that work just fine as well.

    Osmotic stress happens at around 11.13 or so. But that doesn't mean you can't start a batch at significant;y higher gravites. You just need to accommodate the procedure some. I use 2 grams a gallon up to 1120 or so. If I have a partial packet left I just toss it in. I mostly buy in bigger quantities so I mostly just measure to what I want/need. But a few more grams to empty an open package is never wrong to do. Above that, I start using more yeast to start with. A longer ferment needs a bigger biomass to get through it. Even 1170 isn't a big deal. But I would probably do the one-time mid ferment honey addition that you found in the thread you provided.

    You can go even higher buy allowing your honey to just lay on the bottom and not stirred up into suspension. This way you have a lower gravity in the must and still have a ton of gravity points laying on the bottom of your vessel, and they will just slowly eat away at that until the tap. And at that point, you can stabilize and then stir up the must to suspend the RS. But this is just the same as backsweetening the regular way only different.
    7 out of 4 people have a hard time using their hydrometer!

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