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  1. Default packaging mead 1st timer

    Hi! I'm new to the forum and new to meadmaking. If this info is found elsewhere I appologise for being redundant, but I couldn't find the info. I've been brewing beer for 5 years so I have an understanding about equipment and processes.

    My questions are about bottling mead. I want to serve it without carbonation (still is the term I believe?) so I assume I bottle like beer, just skipping the step where I add priming sugar. I'd like to know if oxygen affects mead the way it affects beer. I plan on using a few 1 ltr flip top bottles.

    Is it detrimental to the mead if say, I want to drink half one day and the rest a few days later?

    Also I want to bottle 1/2 gal into a growler and seal with a .38 mL screw on lid. Will it keep if its drank in incriments? Or does it need to be drank in one sitting?

    Thank you!

  2. #2

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    The advice I've been given on flip top bottles is 6-8 months in the bottle and you should be fine. I know there are some people on the board that uses them a lot, but I don't know for how long.

    As for drinking some now, then later, mead is rather similar to wine. Just make sure you recap/cork it fairly well, and it'll be fine for a week or so at half full, but any longer and I'd hit it with a CO2 burst.

    The growler, I don't know. I don't know how air tight growler lids are supposed to be.

    However, if you really want single servings, you can bottle the mead in whatever you want. It doesn't have to be a wine sized bottle just because it's a honey wine. I use beer bottles a lot when I know it's something I'm going to be sharing with family. I use bigger bottles if I'm going to be serving a horn at an event with my kindred.

    I also have some split bottles (375 ml), some old glass soda bottles (6 oz), and some funky sized bottles from overseas or hard liquors because people just give me bottle sometimes. Bottle in whatever size makes serving easy for you, not in what you think you're 'supposed' to use.

  3. Default

    Sorry, will mainly be using 12 oz beer bottles with a few 1 ltr flip top bottles. I think the growler will be awesome but can just use a few more 1 ltr bottles if it will be a problem.

    For the growler the lid seals air-tight but I want to be sure theres no issue with it before I use it.

    One question I forgot: since it will be still, can I just bottle and drink? It was a mead kit from Northern Brewer and it just said wait 2 weeks for carbonation. Since I'm not carbonating I assume I can bottle and drink.

  4. #4

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    I seem to remember Medsen mentioning an experiment he did where regular bottle caps outperformed corks. I'd just bottle them with caps and keep the growlers for something carbonated.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Soyala_Amaya View Post
    The advice I've been given on flip top bottles is 6-8 months in the bottle and you should be fine. I know there are some people on the board that uses them a lot, but I don't know for how long.

    As for drinking some now, then later, mead is rather similar to wine. Just make sure you recap/cork it fairly well, and it'll be fine for a week or so at half full, but any longer and I'd hit it with a CO2 burst.
    I use flip tops and have had some that's several years old with no ill effects. I've also bottled sparkling meads in them (I know this can be a point of controversy, but I haven't had troubles) and they're airtight enough to be sparkling several years later. In fact, I just opened some that was bottled about 2 years ago and it was great!

    I totally agree with you comparing mead to wine for storage.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Ithaca, NY
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    4,958

    Default

    You can bottle and drink immediately, though there is the not-proven idea of "bottle shock". Basically the theory is that the wine/mead gets a little odd/cranky for a little while right after bottling. Could be due to oxygen exposure, jostling around, finding a new equilibrium with the container its in. Who knows? But you might find the taste change right after bottling, and a short wait (couple weeks to a month or so) should fix it.
    Want to see something added to the GotMead Glossary? PM me! Didn't know we had a glossary? Check the top row of links.

  7. Default

    Ok think I'll avoid the growler and go all beer bottles with 4-5 1 ltr flip tops for get togethers. Then shouldn't have to worry about opening a bottle and not finishing it all.

    I can't wait! Its my first, a sweet wildflower mead. I will have a bottle or two first off but will let the rest sit for a few weeks to make sure it finds its equilibrium. Its been in the works since mid september...the gf got it for me for my bday. A few more weeks of waiting won't kill me lol.

  8. #8

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    I did say it was advice I'd gotten, not my experience. I don't have any experience with long term storage in flip-top bottles since I primarily use them for easy open bottles when I know everything I'm taking with me is going to be poured out (i.e. I'm going to be filling a horn over and over and don't have a third hand for a bottle/cork opener)

    I would probably use the growler for the exact same thing if I had the opportunity. Something easy to open one handed since I'd have a glass/horn in one hand, and the bottle in the other, but not for long term storage. Just MHO, so take it for what it's worth.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    UK - South Coast.
    Posts
    3,632

    Default

    From memory, the possible issue with flip tops is to do with the seals failing after a while.

    For long term storage, the rubber can perish, so it may be sensible to use new rubber seals or silicone seals.

    Crown capped beer bottles are usually fine as they provide smaller quantities that can be drunk in one sitting without the worry of oxidation.

    Bedsides, meads don't usually oxidise as quickly as wines, so you can usually drink them the next day without.issue, its just sensible to recap and chill if the bottle has been opened........
    here's me home brewing blog (if anyones interested....)
    and don't forget
    What the large print giveth, the small print taketh away! Tom Waits.....

  10. Default

    I've used the flip tops for years with beer and had no problems. I'll put new gaskets on beforehand though to be sure. I'll be using orval bottles for the rest which are very cool and pretty. It should be fine.

    Thanks for the input. Hope everyone is having a merry holiday today.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Ottawa, ON
    Posts
    8,394

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    Hehe, late to the party again. Silly holiday festivities.

    I routinely bottle my JAO-style meads in 1.5 litre jugs with screw caps (I sanitize the cap that came with it when it was filled with Rosso (Rossi?) wine), and I drink them slowly (I'm still working on a bottle of blackberry mead I started in the summer, it's just under half full at the moment) and haven't yet had one oxidize on me.

    Meads do seem to be a lot more resistant to oxidation than wines, and I've noticed that with my own creations... I don't think I've managed to oxidize a mead yet but I've had several wines get a little bit oxidized (in one case it was an improvement and I did it on purpose the next time I made the same stuff).
    "The main ingredient needed is 'time' followed closely by 'patience'." - The Bishop 2013
    "When you consider that laziness and procrastination are the fundamentals of great mead, it is a miracle that the mazer cup happens." Medsen Fey, 2014
    "Sure it can be done. I've never heard of it, but I do things I've never heard if all the time. That is the beauty of being a brewer!" - Loveofrose, 2014
    "I tend to....um, er, experiment, and go outside the box. Sometimes outside the whole department store." - Ebonhawk, 2014

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