View Full Version : A Blueberry and a Traditional

06-14-2012, 12:36 AM
I have two extra carboys just lying around, and that is never good. I want to put them to use, but could use a little advice before I go one way or another. First, I was thinking of trying to make a blueberry melomel. I've seen a lot of people mention their blueberry creations, but haven't found a recipe anywhere. I threw this together:

3lbs clover honey
2lbs blueberries
one black tea bag
fill with water

1lbs blueberries

Thoughts? Anyone willing to share their blueberry recipes?

Second, I want to finally try doing a traditional mead. I was thinking of using orange blossom honey and some yeast besides fleishmann's for once. After doing a little digging, I've seen people mention that 71B or D254 are good for traditional meads and are better at dealing with higher temps (which I am going to be in without AC). Any advice one way or another, or does anyone suggest another yeast entirely? I was thinking of just doing the honey, water, and yeast with no nutrients, but I saw that this can lead to extended fermentations. How long does such a ferment go/any suggestions on handling it?

For most of my meads so far, I've basically just let them be. Sometimes a shake or a stir in the first week, and then I've racked over to secondaries on two of my meads, but honestly I am not sure how to approach this sort of thing, especially given new yeasts, no nutrients, and it being a traditional.

Thanks for any insight!

06-14-2012, 04:48 PM
Hmm... After reading some more, I guess what I really mean is a show mead, not traditional. Same questions though: what type of yeast is good for show meads, and are there any important differences in approaching or caring for it?

06-15-2012, 08:40 AM
I'm a relative newbie too, but since I'm planning a similar project I thought I'd jump in. Your blueberry recipe looks good from what I've read here and from my (one) experience with a melomel. I have a raspberry aging in my closet that started with about 3lb of raspberries in the primary and 1.5 in the secondary and it's turning out very well. Most of the comments I've seen elsewhere indicate that 'stronger' flavored berries can do well in the primary without being depleted by fermentation. Just make sure you deal with the blueberry cap once it gets going.

06-18-2012, 08:08 AM
Hopefully this isn't frowned upon... /bump.

06-18-2012, 08:42 AM
I'm guessing since this below question hasn't been answered is the reason you bumped it up again.

Hmm... After reading some more, I guess what I really mean is a show mead, not traditional. Same questions though: what type of yeast is good for show meads, and are there any important differences in approaching or caring for it?

I haven't done a Show Mead in a while but I'll see if I can offer a few suggestions based on what I did.

Without the use of rehydration mediums such as GoFerm or adding Nutrients throughout the fermentation be sure to choose a yeast with a low nutrient requirement. Avoid RC212, R2, 58W3 and D254 and go with something like QA23 or DV10 which do well in low nutrients situations.

Pay more attention than usual to your temperature range and aeration. The yeast definitely need to be happy when making a show Mead.

Make sure whatever yeast you use is appropriate fro the ABV you want, by this I mean if you usually use D47 with a Good aeration and Staggard Nutrient Addition schedule and it gets you 14.5%ABV and you are thinking you want your Show Mead to be at 14.5%ABV don't expect the D47 to get you there in this situation bump yourself up to the yeast that usually gets you 16% when following a Good aeration and Staggard Nutrient Addition schedule.

Best of luck with your Show Mead!

EDIT: And remember to DeGas and stir to keep the yeast in suspension. Remember to keep those yeast as happy as you can within the limits of a Show Mead.

06-18-2012, 03:00 PM
Did you freeze your blueberries first?

06-18-2012, 04:00 PM
I haven't actually started it yet, but I always freeze my fruit for a couple days beforehand.

Chevette Girl
06-18-2012, 05:20 PM
Bumping your own thread isn't frowned upon but you'll get better response if you just repeat or clarify your question.

That said, the only show meads I've done (http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php?t=16141) are probably still not finished and I'm going to let them go at least another year before I consider bottling. I think the biggest mistake I made with mine was letting them clear before racking them the first time. I really should have given them a stir to resuspend everything and then given them a few hours for the big things to fall out of suspension but not try to leave behind all the little bits that were probably responsible for the bulk of the fermentation, as both slowed WAY down after racking. I used D-47 and it seemed to do as well as I would expect for yeast with malnutrition problems. Initial SG was 1.085 and I think the SG's below 1.010 now.