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  1. Question My OG is high at 1.140 should I add a stronger yeast?

    This is my first mead.
    Recipe
    Boiled: roughly 1 gallon of water (4 liters)
    Steeped: 1/2 cup of jasmine tea
    : 1 tsp of cinnamon
    : 4 oz of orange peel
    Took of heat
    Added: 5.5 lbs of honey
    Poured into 1 gallon carboy (1 liter extra)
    OG = 1.140
    Added: Lalvin D47 (max 14%)
    Didnít have yeast nutrients so I order online.

    Made bread yeast, added raisins, and then boiled: (as a substitute yeast nutrient)
    Added to carboy two days later.
    It is bubbling nicely. ( smells pleasant not like rotten eggs i.e. H2S)

    I figured it should have a FG = 1.033

    Should I add ec1118 yeast to get the FG closer to 1.00
    Or
    Should I leave it?

    Also I am planing on putting some type of oak and cherry pits into later racking any suggestions on quantity?

    The goal for me is to have something to drink with my wife. Sadly she is allergic to hops so beer is out and she prefers sweet wines over dry. I just donít want something that is sickeningly sweet.

  2. #2

    Default

    Hi Gpbaker - here's my input:
    D47 requires the must be kept at a temp below 68F to avoid a higher chance of off smells/flavors. This is not the temp of the room, but the temp of the actual must which will be higher than the ambient temp due to the fermentation.
    You will need nutrients (raisins are not nutrients).
    The SG of 1.14 is pretty high. It's hard to tell you what is too sweet as that is relative to each person. I can tell you that my understanding is that anything with an SG of 1.020+ is considered dessert mead.
    You can use oak (don't do chips - cubes or other) and acids to try and balance out any sweetness.
    Both D47 and EC1118 have a competitive factor. I'd be more inclined to do another batch with the EC1118 that you ferment to dry, and consider blending it with the sweeter one if it's too sweet for you. Of course, making sure both batches are stabilized before blending.

    If you're doing orange peel with the pith (the white under the orange rind) then you do risk having a bitterness added to the flavor. Orange zest (outer skin) is OK, but the pith can definitely result in undesirable flavors IMO.

    Just my 2 cents

  3. Default

    Thanks,

    I move the mead to the basement to get it as cold as possible without putting it into the refrigerator.
    My nutrients are not suppose to arrive until Monday which will be almost 6 days into the fermentation. Should I still add the nutrients that late into the fermentation?

    Thanks for the advice on the yeast. I will see what the FG is and see how both my wife and I like the dessert wine before blending. We might try adding acid like you suggested first to balance out the sweetness.

    *Correction* to the recipe I used orange zest not orange peel. Good catch

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Location
    Pretoria, South Africa
    Posts
    356

    Default

    6 days is pretty much on the end of the time according to TOSNA. You should have waited for the nutrients to arrive before pitching the yeast (you don't go run a marathon 6 days before your carbohydrates for the run arrives), but that's a done deal now. 1.140 is high. Yeast will most likely not finish with no nutrients, and 1.033 is very sweet in a mead. For me, anything over 1.012 is too sweet, even, unless you're aiming for a dessert wine. Oaking or adjusting after fermentation, coupled with aging, is a good idea to make this drinkable. Don't expect it to be very good after a month, or even after 6. I would give a mead like this, with no nutrients (or at least, assuming insufficient nutrients) and over 11% ABV with no mention of temperature control, made with D47, to not be drinkable anything before a year.

  5. #5

    Default

    The bottom end of the temp range for D47 is 59F. If you could keep the ferment at 62F or so, then it will slow it down a bit (likely a good thing). You're not going to be able to follow modern protocols for nutrients at this point. Maybe others have some suggestions if you don't have a local brew shop to get to (assuming you don't since you ordered them).

    Typically, Staggered Nutrient Additions (SNA) call for only 4 feedings with the 4th being at the 1/3 break or 7th day - whichever comes first - and the previous three within the first 3 days. If you're past the 1/3 break when you get your nutrients, it may be too late, but I'll let others chime in.

    If you use acid additions, taste test small amounts in something like a shot glass, and do the conversions before adding any significant amount to the batch.

    Before you try a new batch, you might want to put the time in on listening to the modern mead making podcasts on GotMead that start 9-5-2017.

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