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Old 12-02-2011, 06:03 AM   #71
thargrav
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I started my MEAD today.

My recipe is really simple. I put 5 gallons of water in a 6 gallon carboy. I pour in 15 pounds of honey, usually clover honey. Then I pour in one pack of Safale S-05 yeast and put in a sterile airlock. I do not cook my MEAD - cooking drives off too much of the honey aroma. The result is a 6 gallon carboy with about 5.75 gallons of liquid.

And BTW, S-04 is a dry Ale yeast.

In the past I would rock the carboy after adding the yeast to help pull some of the honey into suspension then I would rock the carboy once a day until there was no more honey in the bottom - about one month. The MEAD would finish in about three months, then it would settle for at least 6 more months before I would bottle. I usually rack to a new carboy every three months. The result is a slightly sweet MEAD of about 18% alcohol.

This year I'm trying my new Black MAXX Stir Plate.

I started with 5 gallons of water in my 6 gallon carboy then I put the carboy on my stir plate & dropped in a sterile stir bar and turned on the stir plate (picture attached). Then I poured in the 15 pounds of honey - the stir plate maintained a vortex (picture attached). Finally I poured in one pack of Safale S-05 yeast and put in a sterile airlock (picture attached).

From here on out time will tell. But I expect the MEAD to ferment faster. The settling time should be the same - about 6 months. That's how long I have my MEAD settle before it meets my standards.

mead-vortex.jpg   mead-vortex2.jpg   mead-start.jpg  
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Old 12-09-2011, 03:50 AM   #72
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Any more feedback from the samples I sent out?

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Old 12-09-2011, 01:34 PM   #73
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Definitively waiting on more information.

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Old 12-09-2011, 03:27 PM   #74
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what information are you waiting for?

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Old 12-09-2011, 03:38 PM   #75
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Thats a huge bitch!

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Old 12-09-2011, 07:48 PM   #76
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Sorry its been a bit. Just tapped my first sample batch. I bottle my "Control Sample" so in a few more days i know if there are any flavor difference but so far the spun sample is great.

One thing i did do was i fermented in a bucket with the lid on but i didnt fill the airlock. Just sanitized and covered with foil. I figured this would allow it to breath just as you would with a started.

There are no apparent oxidation and the batch fermented down to terminal gravity in 6 days. Cold crashed for 2 and was kegged Sunday after Thanksgiving.

Double IPA up next.

Nice piece of equipment.

Rock Chalk

Chris

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Old 12-10-2011, 12:12 AM   #77
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thargrav View Post
what information are you waiting for?
How well it worked with the mead. Pretty interesting concept, accelerated mead fermenting, still age just as long?
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Old 12-10-2011, 01:20 PM   #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thepirho View Post
How well it worked with the mead. Pretty interesting concept, accelerated mead fermenting, still age just as long?
Accelerated mead fermenting. It''s been almost 8 days and my mead is already down to a bubble every 8 seconds. My mead starts with 15 pounds of honey and 5 gallons of water and a regular batch would be more active even now.

For those of you who only brew low gravity beer, one of my meads usually takes 3 months to completely ferment because of the high gravity. And even at the end of the third month I would have a bubble every minute or so.

Once the activity completely stops I'll sample and will know the outcome.

Settling will take about 6 months to produce a mead with no "floaties" in the bottle.
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Old 12-18-2011, 03:21 AM   #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GNBrews View Post
Right. Any pinhole will expose the beer to oxygen. Air is 21% oxygen and atmospheric pressure is 14.7PSI. Since there is no oxygen inside the carboy, atmospheric oxygen is now attempting to diffuse, with .21 X 14.7 = ~3PSI of pressure, on all of the outer surfaces of the sealed container. The airlock is keeping that oxygen out. While it's true that CO2 is heavier than air, if you have a leak, that ~3PSI of oxygen will rush in and become part of the gas mixture inside

While CO2 is technically toxic to yeast, having some in solution actually creates a cleaner tasting beer by inhibiting some yeast metabolism. It will definitely be interesting to hear what stir plate fermentations taste like.

There's a thread over in the "General Techniques" section about pressurized fermentation if you want to read more. Also, here's an article from Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, titled "Effects of CO2 on the formation of flavour volatiles during fermentation with immobilized brewer’s yeast".
There is the same 14 psi pressure inside the carboy, so a leak wouldn't cause air to "rush" in. If anything, there is more pressure in the carboy because of positive pressure from the CO2 being released from solution.
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Old 12-18-2011, 05:38 AM   #80
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I'm very interested to hear the results of the mead. It's very impressive that you can get a high gravity mead to ferment faster with the stirplate. I've thought about doing this with a 5L flask and a 1 gallon batch. 1 packed of un-rehydrated dry yeast however, is extremely underpitching. If you made a normal size starter I doubt it would take more than 3 weeks for full fermentation without the stir plate.

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