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Old 11-13-2010, 05:39 PM   #1
Homercidal
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Default First mead...

Picked up some cheap honey at the bakery yesterday to try as my first mead. Hopefully it will turn out ok, although this is more or less a trial run to see how fermentation goes, etc.

The honey is likely sourced from China, just going on the price. They wanted $1.95 per lb. I gave them a small plastic container that was once used to transport LME. They fit 11.4 lbs in it.

As I was leaving the store the phone rang of course, and I had the phone on my shoulder and trying to set the honey down I put it on the center console. The lid caught on the parking brake and it tipped a bit. Just enough let some honey run down onto the edge of the seat and carpet. indication of things to come? I hoped not!

With my friend coming the next day to brew, I decided to do up his starter. Got the yeast and DME in the flask and on the stirplate. Then mixed up the honey and water according to the sticky and rehydrated the yeast as I do for dry beer yeast. Started foaming even before I pitched, so my confidence was up! (No food for the yeast at this point. I only had Fermax, which was not indicated for rehydration.)

Took gravity and hit my target at exactly 1.10! (I wanted it a lighter mead). Pitched the yeast and went to eat dinner and watch the new Karate Kid movie with the family. We ended up watching the original first on netflix, then the new one. (Original was better, BTW, accordign to the whole family).

Afterwards went to bed, but before doing so I checked in on the mead and it was bubbling right along! Wow! I thought it might take overnight at least!

Today I added a bit of the Fermax and degassed it a bit while stirring it in.

Here's crossing fingers and hoping it comes out ok. I'm wondering if anyone's tried adding bourbon to mead. Seems like I've heard of this before. Maybe something I tried at the Siciliano's Homebrew Day Party? Memories are faint, but it seems I tried something like that there and really liked it.

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Old 11-14-2010, 01:08 AM   #2
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Congrats on your first mead.

I haven't heard of adding bourbon to a mead. You could always take a little mead out once it is finished fermenting and add a small portion of bourbon to it and see if you like it.

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Old 11-14-2010, 08:13 AM   #3
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Default Good luck!!!

I don't know about adding bourbon to mead but I have tried a few honey bourbons and fell in love.

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Old 11-15-2010, 02:32 PM   #4
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Still chugging away! Smell is slightly more sulphury than I think I have ever smelled in a beer/apfelwein before. Not that strong though, actually.

I haven't had the guts to take a reading, but probably should. The instructions say to put more nutrient in at specific times.

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Old 11-15-2010, 02:39 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Homercidal View Post
Still chugging away! Smell is slightly more sulphury than I think I have ever smelled in a beer/apfelwein before. Not that strong though, actually.

I haven't had the guts to take a reading, but probably should. The instructions say to put more nutrient in at specific times.
If you're following hightest's staggered nutrients addition schedule, my experience tells me that you're probably at ~30% sugar depletion right about now. You could add more nutrient without taking a reading if you want.
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Old 11-15-2010, 03:44 PM   #6
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I am following his schedule, except that I didn't have the rehydration stuff, and added the first nutrient addition the day after I pitched.

I'm pretty excited about this. Sucks to have to wait so long for it to be ready though.

Read up a bit on bourbon mead today and winder if I should toss some oak chips in there too. I'm on a bit of a bourbon kick lately. I normally don't care for hard liquor, but the "flavor" of bourbon has been great in stouts and whatnot. Although I tried it in an IPA this weekend and didn't care for it. (just poured a capful in).

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Old 12-28-2010, 05:53 PM   #7
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Has it only been 1.5 months?? Dang, this takes forever!! (sigh)...

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Old 12-28-2010, 06:39 PM   #8
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keep holding out!

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Old 12-28-2010, 07:18 PM   #9
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It sucks... The carboy has what I would consider normal for beer fermentation. Namely bubbles with what looks like tan yeast clinging to them. I've tried shaking the carboy to degas it a bit and sink that stuff, but it just comes back.

I thought surely it was time to rack and degas some more, but it's only 1.5 months in!!

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Old 12-28-2010, 08:23 PM   #10
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Well... like so many people on the forums say wait for 1/2 to 1 inch of yeast sediment then rack. Some people even will rack 3-4 times till the mead is crystal clear. I've heard of a few who rack every 30 days regardless of sediment or gravity.

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