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Old 04-20-2013, 11:38 PM   #1
Bearmaul
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Default Backsweetening with table sugar

I have a 5 gallon batch of an orange mead that definitely needs some backsweetening. The honey flavor is certainly there pronounced but it's not very sweet -- kind of bitter, actually.

Basically, I'm wondering if it's okay to backsweeten with plain old table sugar. My plan is to add 5 crushed campden tabs (it's a 5 gallon batch), let it sit so the campden can work, make a simple syrup with 1 part sugar and 1 part water, and use it to backsweeten my mead to taste.

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Old 04-20-2013, 11:51 PM   #2
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Its your wine you can sweeten it with anything you want, but why not use some more honey? also you dont need to make a syrup with sugar, just dump it in and stir, but the honey would make it better. WVMJ

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Old 04-21-2013, 12:26 AM   #3
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Its your wine you can sweeten it with anything you want, but why not use some more honey? also you dont need to make a syrup with sugar, just dump it in and stir, but the honey would make it better. WVMJ
Its a money issue primarily. I've been put into a position where I have to pinch every penny I can.
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Old 04-21-2013, 08:25 AM   #4
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Its a money issue primarily. I've been put into a position where I have to pinch every penny I can.
Hum? well I suspect we can all understand that, especially currently......

So just leave it as it is at the moment to age some, then back sweeten with honey later on, unless you're desperate to drink it, then just sweeten it as you already posted.........
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Old 04-21-2013, 11:35 AM   #5
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Been there, done that. I am currently on restriction for buying any more honey since I have my own hives but they are building up I tell her, but you got them to make honey for meadmaking so just use that honey, but the bees need it right now dear, but they dont drink mead, I know dear but I need more bees to make honey, did you want to grow bees or honey I thought it was for honey, but we need more bees to make honey so there is extra for us and the bees. I hope its a good honey year or I am back to making welches again! WVMJ

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Old 04-21-2013, 09:04 PM   #6
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Been there, done that. I am currently on restriction for buying any more honey since I have my own hives but they are building up I tell her, but you got them to make honey for meadmaking so just use that honey, but the bees need it right now dear, but they dont drink mead, I know dear but I need more bees to make honey, did you want to grow bees or honey I thought it was for honey, but we need more bees to make honey so there is extra for us and the bees. I hope its a good honey year or I am back to making welches again! WVMJ
...

Having visions of my future conversations. Hoping to start some hives next spring.
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Old 04-21-2013, 09:12 PM   #7
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I have a 5 gallon batch of an orange mead that definitely needs some backsweetening. The honey flavor is certainly there pronounced but it's not very sweet -- kind of bitter, actually.

Basically, I'm wondering if it's okay to backsweeten with plain old table sugar. My plan is to add 5 crushed campden tabs (it's a 5 gallon batch), let it sit so the campden can work, make a simple syrup with 1 part sugar and 1 part water, and use it to backsweeten my mead to taste.
Don't forget that campden doesn't kill yeast. (and wine yeast is amazingly tolerant of sulfites- that is why winemakers use them). If you want to sweeten the mead, you have to use sorbate as a stabilizer.

Sorbate doesn't kill yeast either, but it inhibits yeast production. In a super clear mead, that is no longer dropping any lees at all after 60 days, sorbate can be used when stabilizing. 1/2 teaspoon per gallon is needed, dissolved in some water, and then that (along with campden) is added to the carboy. The mead is then racked into the solution and allowed to sit for a couple of days. Then you can add the simple syrup.

My preference would definitely be to use a good honey, instead of table sugar, to sweeten a mead. Sure, it would be more expensive but you will definitely taste the honey when sweetening. I would rather NOT sweeten, and drink the mead dry, then to use a sugar syrup for sweetening a mead.
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Old 04-21-2013, 09:43 PM   #8
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Here is a good helpful hint for marital bliss, DO NOT use her kitchen to mix up stuff for the bees and especially not to harvest honey, you cant get enough honey to make it worth the grief of making having to unsticky everything in her kitchen!! WVMJ

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Having visions of my future conversations. Hoping to start some hives next spring.
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