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Old 04-07-2011, 12:46 AM   #51
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I'm using vanilla beans. 1 split and scraped in primary and 2 in secondary as well as an oak cube. I actually want a very prominent vanilla taste. I've heard of people using cocoa nibs on the Got Mead? site, check out the group brew they did. It's very handy seeing as though they post a step by step brewlog as they go.

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Old 04-07-2011, 06:33 AM   #52
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I'm using vanilla beans. 1 split and scraped in primary and 2 in secondary as well as an oak cube. I actually want a very prominent vanilla taste. I've heard of people using cocoa nibs on the Got Mead? site, check out the group brew they did. It's very handy seeing as though they post a step by step brewlog as they go.
Man that sounds good!!!!
Thanks for the heads up about the GotMead site. I did find the info and I will be going with the cocoa nibs instead of powder.
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Old 04-07-2011, 06:50 AM   #53
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Let me know how it turns out. from my taster, mine has a mouthfeel which is actually quite nice. Kinda, creamy (I don't know how to explain it) from all of the dissolved powder!

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Old 04-13-2011, 11:36 AM   #54
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Spent 3 weeks in primary, racked to secondary today. FG was sitting at around 1.002. Took a sampler.. Dear god. This is TERRIBLE. Little to no chocolate flavour, bitter as all hell and kinda citrusy. I'll stabilise and backsweeten at next racking (which by the looks of it will be within the next month or two, the cocoa settles out leaving it a dull brown colour). It better age out or else I've wasted a 5gal batch Racked onto vanilla beans/oak chip. A LOT of trub at the bottom, mostly cocoa I guess. This has until next december to age into something miraculous. But hey, who cares. If it's the end of the world, at least I'll be drinking something, right?... Right?!

For giggles I started a cider on the cocoa trub which I will backsweeten with some honey or caramelised sugar.

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Old 04-13-2011, 11:09 PM   #55
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Old 04-14-2011, 01:33 AM   #56
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It's interesting that mine tasted nothing like yours. I was only able to degass twice a day due to time restrictions, but that is the only thing I did differently! Also, I tasted mine at a week before you tasted yours, maybe in that short time it had mellowed out just a bit? I'm hoping that racking onto the extra cocoa and aging will give a better taste, but it definitely needs to be sweetened to counter the bitterness mine has.

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Old 04-14-2011, 02:03 AM   #57
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I was kind of expecting it to be bitter, so I was prepared to add some lemon juice to counteract it. It wasn't bitter, but it definitely wasn't very good. I dunno what it will taste like after 2 months in secondary – but I expect to play with it some.

Like it says in my video, SG = 1.014 after 1 month in primary. After I racked it, some activity started up for a week or so, so I expect the gravity to drop further.

Again – from everything I've read about chocolate meads, they're supposed to taste terrible for 6 months, bad for a year, interesting in the second year, and orgasmic at 2+ years (at least for the ladies). I have my fingers crossed.

In keeping with the “End-of-the World” theme – there's some christian cult predicting that the rapture will take place on 5/21/11 and that Armageddon will be 10/21/11. I'm thinking of taking what I've learned from this batch and making a “Rapture Mead” on 5/21/11... and then coming up with an “Armageddon Mead” to be brewed on 10/21/11. Anyone have any recipe suggestions? (the only caveat is that I generally only make high-gravity, “big” meads)

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Old 04-14-2011, 02:11 AM   #58
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Again – from everything I've read about chocolate meads, they're supposed to taste terrible for 6 months, bad for a year, interesting in the second year, and orgasmic at 2+ years (at least for the ladies). I have my fingers crossed.
That kind of reassures me. There's hope yet! How long are you planning to bulk age?

A rapture mead sounds like something off the Bioshock video-game, so i would go a hydromel with some really good honey. Either that or a caramel-apple cyser, I've heard good things about it. There's a recipe on here for it by SummerSolstice.
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Old 04-14-2011, 03:06 AM   #59
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My plan for bulk aging is to rack every 2-3 months until it's clear. If it's not clear at 1 year, I'll start to explore other options to clear it.

I'm thinking of doing a vanilla mead for my “rapture” recipe. The chocolate seems to overwhelm the vanilla in my Mayan mead – so I think I'd like to make something that tastes of vanilla.

The caramel-apple cyser sounds interesting for an “Armageddon” mead, given it's in October. I always associate apples with autumn.

Edit - I forgot to mention Brochet. I've wanted to try one of these, so maybe I'll use this excuse...

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Old 05-22-2011, 12:16 AM   #60
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OK - it's been 2 months in secondary (after 1 month in primary) for this brew and I've been mulling over the idea of making this a REALLY end-of-the-world Mayan-inspired brew by adding some hot peppers. After many sleepless nights (and the fact that I've started another chocolate mead, so if I screw this one up all is not lost), I decided to pull the trigger and add some peppers.

I added 6 habaneros (seeds, veins, and all) sliced, in a hop bag.

I have to run, so I'll just post what I wrote in my brew log:


@3 months SG = 1.013. Tastes much more chocolatey and bitter. Maybe the chocolate in secondary added much more chocolate flavor. Interesting, but definitely not good. I think it has promise though. Chopped and placed 6 habanero peppers in a hop bag – and racked on top. Topped off carboy with 2 pounds of honey and 1.5 cups of water. Most of the honey settled to the bottom (I hope it dissolves) – but I gave it a stir with a racking cane. I then pulled a very small taste that had some of the undissolved honey – and OMG!!!!1!111!!! does that make a difference!!!!1!1!! The sweet and the hot and the bitter chocolate go fantastic together! Holy crap, I might have discovered the best thing EVAH!

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