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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Mead Forum > Hibiscus Mead
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Old 06-20-2006, 04:25 AM   #1
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Default Hibiscus Mead

I've had some phenomenal hibischus iced teas and I'm thinking that it might make for an interesting mead. Anyone have any experience with hibiscus in brewing? Can I buy hibiscus online? I have three plants trying to grow in my front yard and I haven't gotten one flower in the month they've been in the ground (but one of the plants is ready to break out its first flower any day now).

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Old 06-20-2006, 05:21 AM   #2
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Also, I found a local beekeeper from whom I'm going to buy my honey for my next batch. I want something local. I might find a wild berry tree and pick some berries for a melomel.

BTW, do any of you upstate ILers know what kind of berries those are that grow all over the place here? They look like blackberries but they grow on a tree. They're delicious, and cars are usually covered in berry bird-poop.

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Old 06-20-2006, 02:20 PM   #3
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Try www.wildweeds.com

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Old 06-20-2006, 02:25 PM   #4
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I haven't tried hibiscus mead yet, but it makes a good wine. I buy my hibiscus from whole foods in bulk it is about $18 a pound. My recipe is for 3 gallons 1/2 pound hibiscus flowers, 6 pounds sugar, two tablespoons acid blend, two tablespoons yeast nutrients, and one packet red star champagne yeast.

Start by bringing two gallons of water to a boil and adding the hibiscus turn the heat of at addition. In another pot invert the sugar by heating it to 250 degrees F with just enought water to liquefy and the acid blend. Once the temp hits 250 add the yeast nutrients and turn of the heat and cover for ten minutes. Next strain the hibiscus water into the pot that has the sugar in it and let it cool. Then mix it and pour all into a 3 gal carboy to off to 3-gallon mark and add you rehydrated yeast.

Rack at 1 month then bottle when clear. Age one year for best flavor.

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Old 06-20-2006, 03:28 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jsin
I haven't tried hibiscus mead yet, but it makes a good wine. I buy my hibiscus from whole foods in bulk it is about $18 a pound. My recipe is for 3 gallons 1/2 pound hibiscus flowers, 6 pounds sugar, two tablespoons acid blend, two tablespoons yeast nutrients, and one packet red star champagne yeast.

Start by bringing two gallons of water to a boil and adding the hibiscus turn the heat of at addition. In another pot invert the sugar by heating it to 250 degrees F with just enought water to liquefy and the acid blend. Once the temp hits 250 add the yeast nutrients and turn of the heat and cover for ten minutes. Next strain the hibiscus water into the pot that has the sugar in it and let it cool. Then mix it and pour all into a 3 gal carboy to off to 3-gallon mark and add you rehydrated yeast.

Rack at 1 month then bottle when clear. Age one year for best flavor.
Thanks! I'm going to try it, but using the following recipe:

12 lbs honey (local), 1lb hibiscus flowers, 2 tbsp yeast nutrient, dry mead yeast.

I'm going to simmer 3 gallons of water with the honey and skim off all the white stuff. When it's all gone, I'll add the nutrient and flowers and simmer for 30 minutes then strain into my primary. I'll sparge the flowers with 1 gallon of warm water then top off the must to 5 gallons with cool water. Pitch the yeast and let it ferment for 6 weeks before racking.
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Old 06-20-2006, 04:09 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesefood
Also, I found a local beekeeper from whom I'm going to buy my honey for my next batch. I want something local. I might find a wild berry tree and pick some berries for a melomel.

BTW, do any of you upstate ILers know what kind of berries those are that grow all over the place here? They look like blackberries but they grow on a tree. They're delicious, and cars are usually covered in berry bird-poop.
I think that you are referring to mulberries. They look a lot like raspberries, but are firmer. They are indeed delicious, and I think that I have seen recipes for mulberry meads floating around.

As a side note, I hear that the leaves of a mulberry tree are mildly halucinogenic. I've never partaken though, so I can't speak from experience.
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Old 06-20-2006, 04:29 PM   #7
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That sounds fairly yummy- what's a hibiscus like? I don't know that I've had much experience with it.

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Old 06-20-2006, 04:48 PM   #8
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Sweet and floral is the only way to describe it. It's a beautiful flower that makes for some nice flavors and a pretty pink color (Gawd, I feel gay).

Try it sometime. Hibiscus tea is quite popular.

I think Mulberries are what the berries I refer to are called. I'm going to make a mull-o-mel sometime soon.

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Old 06-20-2006, 05:04 PM   #9
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How's this for another bizarre ingredient: Marshmallow Root Mead (marshmallow-mel). I'm going to track down some fresh marshmallow root and add it to the mead boil. Should make for an interesting flavor.

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Old 06-20-2006, 05:10 PM   #10
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Or, perhaps this would work:

Lemongrass-Licorice Root-Marjoram

I used to brew this up for an iced tea when going to the Ren Faire, or really any other hot, out-of-doors event. It's delicious, and really keeps you cool in summer.

Think it might work in a meth?

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