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View Poll Results: Am I off my rocker??
You're totally off your rocker for thinking about this. 0 0%
Just make the ~4 gallon batch size and use oak cubes/spiral/stave/etc. 6 37.50%
Suck it up and go for the 5.5-6 gallon batch size and use a 5 gallon/20L barrel to age it. 10 62.50%
Make the ~4 gallon batch size, and use a small barrel to age part of it. 0 0%
Voters: 16. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 12-04-2012, 07:45 AM   #21
huntingohio
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The cubes may be worth an experement, seeing as the whole batch is an experment either way.
Maybe a very very slight oaking would add a good bit of eathyness that would mesh or atleast not conflict with the wildflower honey.
My semi educated guess is your going to need alot of yeast nutrient and energizer too, likely double standard additions. I also have no experence with this yeast strain, only distillers yeast in making a "faux schnapps type liqueur" that came in a round 20% abv.
This batch most likely will be aging for 5+ years before it starts to taste less like rocket fuel, more like a mead liqueur.
If i weregoing to spend my money on such an experement I woul buy on of the big burly red wine kits that come with skins an oak and raise the OG with honey to what your looking for, and pitch that yeast strain. That executed well oaked and aged would be a joy to drink.
But it is your experement just be sure to keep us updated as I am pretty sure your well into uncharted territory, I'm curious how the yeast will behave at this high of an abv. What kind of esters or other by products they make.
I'll be watching closely with a bowl of popcorn and a homebrew

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Old 12-04-2012, 12:57 PM   #22
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I have energizer and some straight nutrient blend (plus some DAP). Need to get to the LHBS today to see if they have more of the nutrient blend (bought a 1# bag at the old LHBS I used to go to). I'm already planning on using about 3-5x the normal amount of nutrients with this batch (per White Labs page) and to oxygenate the living snot out of it. With the lower starting gravity, and ramping it up as it goes, I should be able to push the limits of the strain. Also fermenting on the cooler side should stress the yeast less, giving a better end product.

I like my mead to finish on the sweet side of things. IMO/IME, gives a better tasting product, that you actually enjoy drinking. After two years, my original batches are really coming into their own. With those being 18% (the ones I've been drinking at least) I'm expecting this batch to be at least 2-3 years before bottle, and then possibly another few years before going to glass. I do have a 21% mead that will be getting flavor additions soon, and will probably be another year before it goes to bottle.

I used 1.5oz of oak in a 3 gallon amount of mead, for 4-6 weeks before. Could barely taste the oak earlier, but it's faded pretty much now. I'll probably double the dosage this time. More like 1oz/gallon, and for longer. With the longer aging time, I'd rather oak it a bit heavier and let it be on target in the 4-6 year age range, before it starts to fade away.

Yeah, this is going to be a long time in process batch.

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Mead [bottled]:Oaked Wildflower Traditional, Mocha Madness, Blackberry Melomel, maple wine
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Old 12-04-2012, 03:07 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Golddiggie View Post
Yeah, this is going to be a long time in process batch.
I'd be curious to know WHEN this becomes drinkable. I know it will take a while, but if you can, let us know how long it takes before it tastes good...

Good luck!
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Old 12-04-2012, 03:50 PM   #24
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I plan on posting updates, either in this thread, or a new one. Since I've already blocked off 2-3 years from pitch to bottling, I'm not too concerned. I know the honey is great, it's more a matter of how far I can push the yeast. I also know that the yeast strain isn't all that flocculant, so it will need time to settle out. That will be the lion share of the time before it goes to aging with oak. I'm also considering (since I have it on hand) using either of two different toasted maple, or cherry wood for aging (instead of oak). Also keep in mind, the oak I have on hand (and like to use) is medium toast Hungarian oak. Rather different from the American and French versions (found in most barrels).

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Hopping Tango Brewery

跟猴子比丟屎 ・ Gun HOE-tze bee DIO-se

On Tap: Caramel Ale, Mocha Porter II, MO SMaSH IPA
Waiting/Carbonating: 12.5% Wee Honey II, 8.9% Old Ale, English Brown Ale, Lickah ESB, Mocha Porter II
Fermenting
K1:
K2: Epic mead
K3: TripSix
On Deck: Caramel Ale
Aging:mead
Mead [bottled]:Oaked Wildflower Traditional, Mocha Madness, Blackberry Melomel, maple wine
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