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Old 06-29-2008, 10:55 PM   #1
Liquisky
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Default Joe's quick grape mead question

I followed the directions but I think I ended up with too high a gravity. I ended up with 1.132. this if it goes to 1.00 will be a little over 17% etoh. I have it in a 1 gal jug/carboy and it comes up to where the jug begins to taper. i thought I had 1 gallon when I poured into the jug (used the bucket my 11lbs of honey came in from Homebrew heaven that I THOUGHT was one gallon.

Should I add water now (has been fermenting for 3 days) to get the gravity down or do you think the Lalvin EC-1118 yeast can do the job?


Here's the recipe from an earlier posting, I followed to a tee except maybe getting the volume a little off and I used 3lbs of local honey instead of 2 different kinds.

Thanks for any advice.

I'm fermenting at about 72 degrees in my bedroom. Is this ok or should I get the temp down?

______________

Recipe Type: All Grain
Yeast: Lalvin EC-1118
Yeast Starter: Add Dry
Additional Yeast or Yeast Starter: No
Batch Size (Gallons): 1
Original Gravity: ?
Final Gravity: 1.000 or less
Boiling Time (Minutes): 1
Color: Deep Red
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 14-21
Secondary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 14
Additional Fermentation: No


Joe's Grape Mead / Pyment / Melomel

Ingredients
2 lbs Clover honey
1 oz buckwheat honey
64-oz Welch's Grape Juice with Vitamin C added- Make sure it has no preservatives in ingredients other than Vitamin C added (A.K.A. Absorbic Acid)
Balance water if you need it to make 1 gallon after adding honey mixed in water (don't use too much water in honey mix or you'll end up with more than you bargained for.
Lalvin EC-1118

Methods/steps
Just finished bottling my first Grape Mead Melomel or Pyment whatever one wishes to call it and it was started on November 4th and is simply wonderful to drink already. It was ready in 5 weeks!
Thought I would share my recipe with you, as it is the youngest best tasting, quick mead I have had thus far. Too bad
It will ferment super fast to dry (about 13% alcohol) because of type of yeast and all the nutrients and natural sugars in Welch's grape juice. It should be to SG =1.000 or less in 14- 21 days max.
Rack to clean carboy over mixture of 6-oz honey, 6-oz Welch's grape juice, 1/2t of Sorbate and 1/2 crushed campden tablet.
It will stabilize and clear fast. Let it clear and set for another 2 weeks and it will be ready to bottle and drink.
It will be medium sweet but smooth and drinkable right away. If you want it semi sweet use 4-oz honey instead of 6-oz / gal.
The only reason I used the Campden (Sulphite) is because my understanding is that using both Potassium Sorbate and Sulphite together will definitely inhibit renewed fermentation and it did for me.
Color is deep red, has nice legs on sides of glass after swirling, good nose and great balanced taste) Just don't tell everybody you used Welch's. I won't. Because the juice is clear to start, clearing is naturally fast, fast, fast.

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Old 06-30-2008, 04:11 AM   #2
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EC-1118 will Get'er Done! up to like 18% or better.

Don't mess with this batch. You will end up with a STRONG mead..but it'll be good...someday.
Try another next weekend. Begin on the 4th of July weekend, you may be able to sample by Labor Day.

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Old 06-30-2008, 10:35 AM   #3
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Are you sure you followed the recipe? I've made this recipe several times over the past few years using a variety of juices and it always starts at around 1.080 or so. Remember that 2 lbs of honey is a little less than a quart.

The secret to making a quick mead is keeping the gravity low. As BigKahuna said, this one's going to take a while to finish - likely a year. No problem, though. Just start another one to enjoy while this one's aging.

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Old 06-30-2008, 02:06 PM   #4
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Default Thought I followed directions, honey was liquid

The local honey I used was less thick from other's I've seen, poured out very easily. I didn't have to use very much water to "dissolve" it maybe just a cup and a half or so to get it warm so it would mix better with the Welches. I then used the full 64oz of grape juice. I read and reread the specific gravity, cause it looked pretty high. I guess I assumed that the 1 gal jug would hold more than one gallon the way carboy's do. I may be mistaken on this point and just didn't add enough water to make a gallon. That's why I was asking if I should add more water. Are the one gallon jugs 1 gallon only if you fill all the way up to the top? This one is a clear jug bought from homebrewheavan.

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Old 06-30-2008, 02:56 PM   #5
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There will always be variations in honey and other fermentables. Really, the way I do it is, I use the recipe as a guideline and I always use a plastic bucket for a primary. That way I can add more honey, water or juice to hit the specific gravity I'm shooting for. I make a little more than the size of the target glass secondary because I always lose a little (or more) in racking. If there's any left over, that's what I use for topping.

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