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  1. #1

    Default Ian's Excellent JAO Bottling Adventure Video

    It was my first JAO and my first mead and I needed some content to try out new eqiupment for my wifes tv show we are producing in a week or so. Anyway, in the middle of editing, and it won't be the must prep or anything like that, but it does show how I bottled, what I used and how I prepared everything. Also good shots of what 'clear' mead looks like in the fermenting carboy with the fruit from JAO. (think cooking show, but mead instead).

    I will be sure to post a link here for those who are interested. It will be on Vimeo (like you tube but way higher quality) in 720p (this is high definition) and will hopefully be in the same style as the show we will be shooting for my wife.

    I will keep people posted.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Evergreen, CO (west of and above the Denver smog!)


    Hey, Ian! That is fantastic!! I'm looking forward to watching....

    BTW, welcome to the "New and Improved" "GotMead?" !!
    Na zdrowie!

    Wayne B.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Boulder County, Colorado


    Since PBakulic mentioned that both him and Vicki are working on a book of mead making, something that crossed my mind as I was strolling through the mall looking for gifts was a gotmead calendar. The calendar can give recipes, history of meadmaing, tips and the pics can come from user submitted pics of their mead. Not only would it be a great gift to give out, it would be a great way to show off some of the wonderful meads that are being made.

    For what it is worth, that is my 2 cents.


    Not all those who wander are lost.
    -J.R.R Tolkien

  4. #4

    Default All, wanted to post the follow up to my original post

    Here is the 'final' video. Not exactly what I would have liked, (need more camera angles) but I have run out of idea's for the footage I have. So this project is finished, I am pretty sure the next project will be much better, and I am thinking the next project will be the 'starting' must of a champagne project.

    Anyway, enjoy the video, and you can post any critiques on the video site or here,

    Also, if a mod feels like moving the post, feel free too.

  5. #5



    I got a chance to watch your video! It was very fun and watchable. You are brave for putting this up for viewing!

    There were a some pretty serious brewing NO-NOs in it however. :-( I am wondering about editing it a bit to correct them.

    The big one was your sanitation protocal was okay for your bottles, but missing all together or lax in others. Your siphon was not sanitized, your corks, while boiled, were touched by hands (some multiple times!) during the corking procedure (and once by mouth - eek).

    Another big one was pouring back into the main carboy. Anything removed from the carboy could have been infected, by pouring back the main carboy will be also infected.

    A couple of suggestions to help your brewing:

    StarSan is a quick and effective santizer. It is not expensive (it is sold as a concentrate and then home diluted). Put it in a spray bottle and wet any surface for 30 seconds to sanitize. Drain excess DO NOT RINSE and use. Don't worry about bubbles, they don't affect the taste. Sanitize your siphon, bottles, corks, hands, counters, etc. It is better to over-sanitize than to risk infection.

    Siphon - use water to pull a siphon. The mouth is not sanitary! Pour water into the hose and have a container next to your first bottle. Drop the tip into the container until the color changes, then pinch off the siphon hose and bottle away. Sanitize the tip frequently especially if it is touched or touches other surfaces.

    Or better - invest just a few more dollars for an auto-siphon and bottling wand.

    I am not familiar with the corker you used or the process of boiling corks. I use a floor corker and only dip the end of the cork in StarSan. I've never lost a bottle. Well, okay, one bottle, but it refermented and the pressure blew the cork and mead aaaalllll over everything. In any case, let your bottles sit upright for 3 or so days to let the excess pressure escape, then turn your bottles. There is a recommended fill level which I am forgetting right now, I always look it up right prior to bottling. I *think* it is 1 inch below the bottom of the cork. Mentors?

    One more thing, always handle your hydometer by the bulb. The are prone to snapping off if you hold them by the thin top.

    I look forward to your next video! I'd suggest checking in with the Mead Mentors prior to your next one for technical brewing help on your project.

    Again, thanks for the work you did!

    All the best,
    "Spanky, Sparky, Buckwheat the Fourteenth - doing the right thing starts first thing in the morning, not after you are caught." -- John Criton FarScape

  6. #6

    Default Wow, some great feedback here

    I wanted to post a quick reply and say that I did boil the syphon hose and any cork that I pulled out with my teeth got thrown away. I guess I just I didn't think I needed to be as worried about sanitation at the bottling stage, because any wild yeast would not be able to survive the toxic (alcoholic) conditions inside the bottle?

    Am I wrong here, and my bottled mead appears to be ok after about 5 weeks??
    Need some help here?


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    The OC


    Hey Ian,

    It's not just wild yeast that you need to be concerned about. There are many other sources of potential infections in dust, pet dander, fruit flies, etc. Anything and everything that the mead touches or is decanted into needs to be rabidly sanitized.

    I noticed that you had bottles in a pot of steaming water, the vid was a bit dark so I didn't notice if it was boiling or just really really hot. It's not really a great idea to put glass (except for glass designed to deal with that heat like mason jars, pyrex, etc.) into that kind of intense heat lest it go pop or just crack and break.

    Anyhow, congrats on your vid! I think you're on the right path and your vid will evolve into something great. I'm going to split this thread off from the original thread so you can have an ongoing conversation without threadjacking the original posted topic.

    cheers and best of luck, Oskaar
    Is it tasty . . . precious?

  8. #8



    There are all sorts of evil things that thrive in alcoholic conditions. The main one that is everywhere is the bacteria that turns wine into vinegar.

    I've been fighting an infection in my kitchen and it is really heartbreaking to deal with 5 gallons of wonderful mead that is trying to turn into vinegar. I've sanitized it 3 times and I finally think I've gotten ahead of it. *crosses fingers*

    Mold is also a concern. You have heard of moldy wine, I'm sure.

    My main concern is that many folks learn from videos only these days. I didn't see/hear you say anything about sanitizing the siphon. I saw you take it from the package and then use it. Your hands were all over the entire thing over the course of bottling. And it wasn't clear that you had discarded corks.

    I am so not trying to jump down your throat about your very fun video. Like I said, I know a lot of folks just dial up a YouTube session or two to learn how to do things and that is it. You have a nice presence on camera - I've done public TV spots in another incarnation and it's a hard thing to do.

    I have no idea if you will have problems with infection or not. But the techniques certainly left the door open for such. I hope that it all turns out okay for you!

    All the best,
    "Spanky, Sparky, Buckwheat the Fourteenth - doing the right thing starts first thing in the morning, not after you are caught." -- John Criton FarScape

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    UK - South Coast.


    Well, Ok rather than pick holes in Ians content production technique, because, let's face it, there's a few "frowned upon" methods used in the actual content.

    The kit used to actually film the vid produced a good quality piece, though it might be sensible to think about a better microphone if it's something you're gonna do on a regular basis - there was a awful lot of background noise getting picked up.

    Personally for such an exercise, I'd have thought a proper "plan" as to what you actually want to show. Seperate out the scenes a little more i.e. make the first part about cleaning the bottles and then concentrate on the bottling part or just focus on sanitising/sterilizing new bottles because it's easier to see (from a camera POV - baring in mind the limited ability of a camera when compared to using the eye) the mead flowing into the bottles.

    When I say a "proper" plan, I'm not suggesting getting to anal about it and making up story boards etc, but a basic list worked out then thought over so you are a little more prepared in how you actually order the sections of the shooting.

    Ah, yes, and don't forget the basic physics i.e. you're not going to compress the liquid with a hand corker. You're compressing the air space between the liquid and the bottom of the cork, hence, as you found out, that if the liquid is too high up the neck of the bottle then the cork will seem to be sliding back out of the bottle by itself - because the compressed air between liquid and cork is at too high a pressure.

    Notwithstanding the points raised by myself and others, and irrespective of the "how not to do it" things, I say for a first effort and that it was done "in the home", well done. 7 out of 10.

    My only point is that it might be bettter if it was shot in a slightly lower quality, to allow for faster download. Then with the appropriate pre-production planning, the shot would go better, need less editing post shooting and have a more "polished" look about it.



  10. #10

    Default Wow, great feedback

    I think this gives an entirely new perspective on 'Watch and Learn'...Apparently what I created was 'Watch and don't learn from me!'.

    I have a new batch going, and I expect that I will film the racking steps. This time I will show more sanitation, more shots of cleanliness (and actually being clean). Also, I am going to wear gloves when I need to touch sanitized surfaces. However I am now trying to never touch a sanitized surface.

    As for the production tips. Wow, could I have used a mic or what! Thankfully someone has let me borrow a mic, so I am all set to use it this weekend. (for the racking) and hopefully the sound can be significantly clearer. I guess we'll see sometime soon.

    Also, the comments on 'people who fire-up you tube and learn from there'. I think this is certainly the case for some projects. However, in the process of learning about Mead, there isn't anyway that someone is going to get into this Hobby and spend the $ it takes to make a batch, then follow my advice exclusively. I could see if this was a weekend DIY bench building project, but when it comes to making Mead, the expense and effort and time is just to great for someone to only use my video as a single source of information. In the next films, I will be much more aware of this than in this first one.

    The good news, is that in the future, I will be trying to show a lot more sanitation steps, maybe speak more about ingredients that originally went into this batch, and spend some time on yeast and preparation.

    Thank you for the views and great criticism. If any of my responses sound defensive, please just remember that I want all feedback! It only makes the next video's better, and hopefully the mead taste better too!

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