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Old 07-16-2009, 08:32 PM   #1
dmob29
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Default 1st Cherry Mead - Wyeast 4184 - petered out

I am trying my hand at a mead now, although its going to be really sweeeet. Here is what I got if anyone has any tips:
Sweet Mead is the intent:
16lbs of wildflower honey (didn't realize how sweet this is over other types!!)
nutrient and wyeast sweet mead 4184
OG - 1.114
FG - 1.040 (kinda high??) The sample was sweet, but pretty good.
This was about 6 weeks at around 72.

I just moved it onto 7 lbs of frozen dark sweet cherries (pitted) from Trader Joes and waiting to see what happens with that. Planning on leaving it there for at least a month.

Just saw that with the wyeast 4184 the tolerance is only 11% and I am currently sitting at about 10.5% and thats before it does anything with the cherries I just racked onto...which won't be much with the low tolerance.

Any suggestions?? Just let it finish or should I repitch with a Red Star or another yeast??

Headin to my LHBS on Friday.

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Old 07-16-2009, 08:57 PM   #2
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I've never been impressed with the Wyeast sweet mead yeast, from my experiences using it in the past (too sweet, petered out too soon, or never took off). I don't use it anymore.

Prior to adding the cherries.... I would have repitched with some Lalvin 1116 yeast. Given your beginning SG, 1116 would get you down close to 1.015-1.020, if you don't add any more nutrients. However, since you've added the cherries, any new yeast is going to pick up some nutrients from the fruit, and it's hard to say how low your SG will go.

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Old 07-16-2009, 09:23 PM   #3
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Ya, that's kinda what I was thinking. I got anxious to move it...live and learn!!

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Old 07-17-2009, 05:58 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrgoodcheese View Post
I've never been impressed with the Wyeast sweet mead yeast, from my experiences using it in the past (too sweet, petered out too soon, or never took off). I don't use it anymore.

Prior to adding the cherries.... I would have repitched with some Lalvin 1116 yeast. Given your beginning SG, 1116 would get you down close to 1.015-1.020, if you don't add any more nutrients. However, since you've added the cherries, any new yeast is going to pick up some nutrients from the fruit, and it's hard to say how low your SG will go.
+1 on the yeast, I know your fermentation is not technically stuck but if you do have one it is the yeast to use and has an alcohol tolerance of 20%.

A nice link for all wine yeasts- Winemaking: Strains of Wine Yeast

I would rehydrate and add nutrients as it may be tough for the yeat to start up in the current state of your mead even considering its tolerance.
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Old 07-17-2009, 06:11 PM   #5
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Right on, thanks for this. I am heading to my LHBS today to pick up some grain for a brew I'm doing this weekend so I can grab some more nutrient and yeast. Would you recommend airation too? I have heard that is not really a good thing to do this far into it to risk oxidation.

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Old 07-17-2009, 06:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dmob29 View Post
Right on, thanks for this. I am heading to my LHBS today to pick up some grain for a brew I'm doing this weekend so I can grab some more nutrient and yeast. Would you recommend airation too? I have heard that is not really a good thing to do this far into it to risk oxidation.
I would not for that reason just racking onto the solution of yeast and nutrients should be fine.
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Old 07-17-2009, 06:20 PM   #7
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Sweet, thanks again! I wasn't really worried that much, but I at least wanted to get a dryer mead... the sample was pretty much like syrup, still pretty tasty though.

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Old 07-17-2009, 06:25 PM   #8
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For future reference back sweetening to taste is pretty easy and you dont have to worry about yeast pooping out on you.

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Old 07-17-2009, 10:44 PM   #9
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you may be able to increase the acidity with acid blend to balance the sweetness. 1.040 is very very sweet. I've found most mead over 1.020 is cloyingly sweet once aged, but some acidity will help decrease the perceived sweetness. So would tart fruits.

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