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Old 12-12-2009, 04:51 AM   #1
McMead
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Default How long is too long in primary fermentation?

We have a soon to be melomel in primary fermentation and the bubbling has slowed to a point where it is ready to be racked to a secondary ferment. We are doing this mead as a group and i would like to have everyone present for the racking but life sometimes gets in the way. Will it be ok sitting on the yeast cake for an extra week or two?

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Old 12-12-2009, 10:49 AM   #2
fatbloke
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Originally Posted by McMead View Post
We have a soon to be melomel in primary fermentation and the bubbling has slowed to a point where it is ready to be racked to a secondary ferment. We are doing this mead as a group and i would like to have everyone present for the racking but life sometimes gets in the way. Will it be ok sitting on the yeast cake for an extra week or two?
Are you intending to move it to secondary or have you just finished the ferment in the primary ?

If the former, then you'd normally be moving it to secondary (for anaerobic fermentation/finishing) at about 1030 or so.

If it's the latter, then it's already finished fermenting, it's all gonna be protected by a layer of CO2 (though meads don't oxidise as quickly as other fruit/grape wines) so it's not a problem. You might even look into "sur lie" a.k.a. battonage technique to explain to the group. Though remember to explain about checking whether the yeast is suitable for that or not.....

Either way, if it's finished, then a couple of weeks shouldn't be a problem.....hell it might even help it clear a little more than you'd planned.
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