So, read around a bit and wondering about cork prep for bottling.
First off, I'm using these colmated corks from Portugal by way of Germany:
I've read various ways of doing it: Boiling the corks, soaking them in hot water for an hour, steaming the corks, soaking in meta for an hour. I'm not sure if I want to use meta, but I don't know if it's a good idea to boil these corks. Comated corks, if you don't know, are basically natural corks that were not quite as high of a grade. They then use a cork powder glue of sorts to plug the holes. Anyway, the material is natural cork.
So, would it be safe to boil these, or soak them without meta?
They came in a sealed bag. And that's the other thing: The seller recommends using all of the corks within 6 hours of opening the bag because of moisture loss to the corks once the bag is opened. Does this sound right? I suppose if that's what they recommend that they would know. Hell if I know.
I'll be using a floor corker like this:
I read Schramm's book and that part about bottling, but any and all ideas about bottling are appreciated.
And, oh, yes, the mead is ready for bottling. 3 batches ranging in age from 10 months to 14 months old, all fermented out, clear and ready to go.