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Old 09-13-2010, 10:10 AM   #1
BigErn
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Default Lemon Mead (lyser?)

Lemon mead.... has anyone tried to make it like you would a cyser.

I was thinking 3 galons of lemonade with 6 lbs honey topped up to 5 gallons.

What are peoples thoughts on this?



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Old 09-13-2010, 01:03 PM   #2
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Check this thread. I had a real hard time with this due to the pH of the lemon juice. The yeast just didn't like it and I had to neutralize the acidity. Once it was all done, conditioned, acidity re-added (using acid blend) and back-sweetened, most people can't taste the lemon anymore. I even added the skin of 1 lemon to try and get some of the citrus oil back into it.

If you attempt this, let me know how it turns out. I still think that honey and lemon just go together naturally, but making them work, meh.

Another option is to make a basic sweet mead and then add the lemon juice to it until it tastes right.

Good luck!
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Old 09-13-2010, 02:06 PM   #3
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Check out Homebrewer99's Light Lemonade Mead in the recipe area, and tweak to suit.

I did a basic Hydromel with lemonade. Maybe 7# of honey and a bunch of lemonade concentrate cans and it turned out orgasmic.

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Old 09-13-2010, 02:17 PM   #4
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Fermenting lemonade can be a challenge due to pH being so low. There are two approaches that I know can work.

1. Ferment by using the yeast cake from a prior fermentation using a yeast like EC-1118 that is tolerant of low pH. These yeast will be more-accustomed to a harsh low pH environment. Then keep it warm, and aerated, and be very patient and it will usually get going.

2. Adjust the pH. It takes a lot of Potassium Bicarbonate or Calcium Carbonate to to bring the pH up from Lemonade levels (typically 2.8 or lower) up to the range where yeast can work, but if you get the pH up to around 3.2-3.4, you can typically get it done easily. Once the pH is adjusted, the yeast love citrus fruit. After fermentation is complete, you can taste it to see if it is tart enough to suit you; in most cases it probably will be as the acidity is still very high, and TA is more closely associated with acid taste than is pH. However, if you need to add some acid to suit you, using acid blend, citric acid, or more lemon juice will allow you to get the level you want. When I do this, I find the lemon aroma still present, but I do ferment them relatively cool. Adding some lemon zest will give you more.


Of the two approaches, I much prefer the second method. However, there are a lot of folks on www.winepress.us that make a lemonade recipe called "Skeeter Pee" that uses the first method, and they mostly seem happy with the results. Check out skeeterpee.com for the details.

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Old 09-14-2010, 01:55 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jezter6 View Post
Check out Homebrewer99's Light Lemonade Mead in the recipe area, and tweak to suit.

I did a basic Hydromel with lemonade. Maybe 7# of honey and a bunch of lemonade concentrate cans and it turned out orgasmic.
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Old 09-14-2010, 03:16 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 3 Dog Brew View Post
Another option is to make a basic sweet mead and then add the lemon juice to it until it tastes right.
I would think this is the money line...no worries about the pH, and you'll probably get more recognizable lemon flavor in the end by adding after the main fermentation finishes...
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Old 09-15-2010, 08:19 AM   #7
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I just started a 'hard lemonade' for all intensive purposes. I juiced about 8 or 9 lemons (ended up being about 3 litres of lemon juice), zested 2, added 4kg of sugar and topped up with water to 20L. Pitched yeast, and the airlock started bubbling after about 48 hours.

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Old 09-15-2010, 07:35 PM   #8
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I was thinking of doing something like this, but instead just making a traditional mead, and then bulk aging on a few lemon zests. This would give the lemon flavor and hopefully avoid all the acidity issues from the lemon juice. Maybe add lemon juice after stabilizing if necessary.

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Old 09-16-2010, 01:16 AM   #9
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Be careful, when you ferment lemon juice it can get kind of harsh



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