Mead Making

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Trialben, Feb 6, 2020.

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  1. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Thought I'd start a Mead thread for those who would like to share their mead making techniques with the brewing community and also to help me out on my first Mead brew:).

    I've done some research on other forums there seems to be a go to mead recipie called the "BOMM mead". Not sure I got his name right Breas One Month Mead is the accroynym.
    He lays out steps for you to make a one gallon or 5 batch of clear mead in one Month
    A couple of guidelines is you need
    Wyeast 1388
    DAP (Diamonium Phosphate)
    Fermaid K (I think new one is Fermaid O)
    Adding additions of these above yeast nutrients every third through fermentation shaking to degass at every sugar break e.g. OG =1.090 first addition at .060 second at .030.
    Here's link to the thread if your interested https://www.homebrewtalk.com/forum/threads/brays-one-month-mead.429241/
    I've done most of my browsing on there...

    Ok so I can get this DAP stuff but not the Fermaid O or K but I do have some Yeast nutrient already which contains Zink Phosphorus- potasium manganese already.
    Why can't I just use some of this stuff boiled cooled and added to the mead at the third sugar break intervals?

    Also keen on using either this new hornindal Kviek yeast or Skare yeast on this mead brew.
    Im Not keen to buy more yeast when I've got more strains than you can poke a stick at sitting in me freezer...

    Any Mead brewers out there?
    I'd appreciate your opinion and insite into mead brewing.

    Already I'm noticing some slight differences in brewing techniques from beer to Mead shaking to degass and Sanitation doesn't seem to be as up front as with beer.

    Cheers!
     
  2. Yooper

    Yooper Administrator
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    I'm an experienced meadmaker and winemaker.
    Sanitation is critical, just as with beer. Perhaps more so in many ways, since there is no boil.

    Remember that mead can easily go to 18%, depending on the amount of fermentables you use, so remember that when you are choosing a yeast strain.

    I don't use "yeast nutrient" in beer, so not sure what that is.

    Degassing has to do with the higher ABV of mead. Remember that co2 is poisonous to yeast so stirring to degas means better release co2, especially if you have a tight fitting airlock.

    BOMM uses solid techniques for mead, so following his instructions means you can't go wrong.
     
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  3. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the reply Yooper!
    I had my first tastes actually as a ring in judge on mead when I went to my last hombrew comp :rolleyes:. Oh boy oh boy there was some lovely tasting meads from memory a blueberry mead stole the show for me it was so complex delicate thing and yep plenty boozy (I went and searched that bottle out of the entries at the end of the night to Finnish that bottle off :D!

    Going to have a crack at this 4lt batch tomorrow with some "winter honey" that's what my work mate called it not the best grade honey sorta crytalizes easy.
    https://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/view/945555/lemon-myrtle-mead
    So do use any of these mineral additions when your making mead Yooper DAP Fermaid K or K2C03 (potasium carbonate :confused:)?

    Apparently honey has less nutrients the yeast need for a happy ferment so it's added at like 1/2 real in every third way through fermentation maybe to drive it to completion.
    Any who CHEERS wish me luck :)
     
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  4. beer1965

    beer1965 Active Member

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    #4 beer1965, Feb 10, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2020
    I'm one for keeping life simple. I didn't always. But age does that to you.

    I recently made some mead and had to jig a bit of math to work it all out. Being in Canada our gallons are imperial and not the same as US. After a fair amount of checking and double checking I opted to convert the basic recipe into grams. I wasn't positive if my gallon jugs were imperial or US. Turns out they were imperial so it was good I made the conversion.

    Typically it's 3lbs of honey for 1 US gallon of water. In grams it's a 1 gram honey to 2.78 gram water conversion. With that you can scale it to whatever size you'd like. And of course having bees I'm using raw honey.

    I ended up making a half gallon or so equivalent to test the waters and mixed the honey and water together with a pretty vigorous shake in the jug to aerate the mix well. I also ended up taking some of the water needed (before any honey was added) and brought it to a boil with a black teabag and a handful of raisins that were chopped up. The raisins were for yeast nutrient and the tea bag to add tannin. It was about a cup of water. Once at a boil I let it stay there for a minute or two and then let it sit until cooled. The teabag and raisins were strained and only the liquid added to the jug.

    As to yeast you should think about alcohol resistance. I didn't want a sweet mead but something dry and crisp so I pitched 1 gram of E118. It's a champagne yeast with an 18% alcohol resistance before it puckers out. If I wanted it sweeter I would have picked a lower alcohol resistant strain. I added 1 gram given the volume.

    Lastly I cut up a clementine into 1/8ths and dropped it into the jug to see if that would translate well. Be careful if using a regular orange as the thick white pith of an orange peel could add a bitter note to the mead. You could alternatively use a kitchen peeler and peel an orange and add those to the tea boil above and not add the clementine. It's been about two weeks and I still have some slow bubbling through the airlock. The pic below doesn't show the clementine floating on the top as I added it after this pic was taken.

    And of course as someone mentioned above, keep it clean. I used starsan.
     

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  5. thunderwagn

    thunderwagn Well-Known Member

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    Looks tasty! I've made JOAM a few times, and a couple variations off of it. It's a super easy, almost foolproof way to get your feet wet. I've got bottles of the stuff that's several years old and it continues to improve it seems. The recipe and videos are all over the www and YouTube.
    https://gotmead.com/blog/recipe/joes-ancient-orange-clove-and-cinnamon-mead/
     
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  6. Yooper

    Yooper Administrator
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    I don’t use K-carbonate, as that raises pH and it would only be needed if the pH is too low. But I do use DAP.
     
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  7. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    I didn't get around to doing that mead yesterday beer brewing got in the way lol:D.
    Was probably a good thing as will give it a bit more thought yet.
     
  8. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Brewed that Mead up this arvo or should i say mixed it up. I ended up pitching some active Hornindal kviek yeast into it:) it's sitting at a cosy 36c atm ready to rock on. Added 15g grated ginger and 3g lemon Myrtle leaves along with a small quarter teaspoon of yeast nutrient to some boiling water to make a tea and dumped this in with some warm pre boiled water along with roughly 1.3kg of honey OG came in spot on 1.096. 20200211_173932.jpg
     
  9. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Thought I'd check in on this mead today just 3 days into fermentation. I've been shaking the bottle morning and night to degass.
    Sample was at 1.022 down from 1.096 9 something % I'm impressed with this Hornindal so far now the hard part finishing this off it's supposed to cut out at 12% :rolleyes: we will see hey?
    Sorry no pic but I drunk me hydro sample mmm mmm tasting on track to Me this is where a refractometer comes in handy I suppose...
     
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  10. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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  11. Hogarthe

    Hogarthe Well-Known Member

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    Honey is all simple sugar. Definitely use yeast nutrients to keep the yeast happy or they will get a sugar crash and poop put early. I don't think fermaid k is absolutely necessary, it's likely just the brand the recipe author had on hand. As long as you use something you should be ok. And mead almost always gets better with some age on it so don't drink it all right away.
     
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  12. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    #12 Trialben, Feb 22, 2020
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2020
    Bubbles have stopped rising up the bottle so took a gravity sample .996 it reads wow 100% attenuation starting gravity 1.096. So hornindal can ferment to 13%abv. 20200222_112827.jpg
    It tastes hot for sure some slight medicinal flavour in the background. I can smell the ginger and honey aroma as well as taste it there is also I don't know how a slight sweetness to it. Not to bad see how it shapes up with some age I suppose.
    Oh not sure on the lemon myrtle not picking up heaps of that


    Cool might try a mixed fruit one next
     
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  13. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    That's a big'un. You could freeze a bit and create some meadjack.
     
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  14. beer1965

    beer1965 Active Member

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  15. thunderwagn

    thunderwagn Well-Known Member

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    Put your mead away and forget about it. It generally improves greatly with time.
     
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  16. beer1965

    beer1965 Active Member

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    I assume you mean when bottled. But put away for how long typically? A few months or are you thinking a year or more?
     
  17. thunderwagn

    thunderwagn Well-Known Member

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    After bottling, I stash it away and try after a few months. I've got some that's several years old and is great. Mead is good, but I'd much rather have a few beers than a small glass of Mead.
     
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  18. beer1965

    beer1965 Active Member

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    I hear you.. I don't know much about mead and am going to try some small gallon batches. I have a traditional on the go now and will make some more with fruit as well. I have four beehives so the honey is easy for me so I figure why not. I'm thinking this summer/fall when I replenish the honey stock I'm going to try a braggot to see what that's like.
     
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  19. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Yeah seems the turnaround on mead ain't so quick more of a patience game.
     
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  20. thunderwagn

    thunderwagn Well-Known Member

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    Ain't nobody got time for dat!
     

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