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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Mead Forum > Mead fermentation Help
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Old 10-05-2010, 06:34 PM   #1
hopheadgirl
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Default Mead fermentation Help

I recently started a Mead. I used 12lbs of grapefruit honey from a local bee farm, 4 gallons of water and added a orange. Once we dropped the temp down to 78 degrees we pitched the yeast. We used WLP001 California Ale Yeast. The temp has been at 74 degrees pretty consistant now and I am not seeing any bubbles. Any ideas why my yeast isnt going off? Its been 57 hours now and no real activity.

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Old 10-05-2010, 07:01 PM   #2
MedsenFey
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Did you happen to add anything else? acid blend? nutrients?
What was the expiration date of the yeast?
What was the starting gravity?
What is the current gravity?

I ask because meads sometimes don't show nearly as much activity as beer when fermenting, and checking the gravity can confirm that the yeast are active.

It often helps, when using liquid yeast, to make a starter. The cell counts just aren't high enough otherwise, and can give a very long lag phase. Try aerating the must really well to help the yeast in there grow and divide more, and it might be helpful to add some nutrient. If it doesn't get going in the next 24 hours, you may want to repitch using a starter.

Medsen

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Old 10-05-2010, 07:22 PM   #3
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The yeast wxpration was January 2011, did not add anything else. It was 1 am when I finally got the temp down and forgot to take a starting gravity. I have only ever done all grain beers and so this is very new to me. I have never had to use a starter on liquid yeasts and was afraid to pull the airlock off. I am guessing its not a fragile as beer so I can do the gravity now as well as reaerate it.

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Old 10-05-2010, 09:21 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hopheadgirl View Post
I am guessing its not a fragile as beer so I can do the gravity now as well as reaerate it.
That's correct. Oxygen exposure isn't problematic for meads during fermentation, and in fact, it is necessary to get the yeast to build enough biomass to complete fermentation. Beer doesn't have that problem in most cases because you're typically dealing with lower gravities and lower alcohol levels.

Hopefully, you're just seeing a long lag phase.
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Old 10-06-2010, 05:46 PM   #5
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Good news, it appears it was just a slow start but we got bubble last night YAY! Still much slower than what I am used to but at least its starting. It took 60 hours to see a sign of life.

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Old 10-07-2010, 03:18 PM   #6
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Default honey

Hey Hopheadgirl
Where did you purchase your honey from?
I am up in the north county and the only bee farms around me only what to deal with is bulk purchases(20gallons or more).
I really want to make a mead this weekend, so any suggestion what be great thanks.
igotsand

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Old 10-08-2010, 07:39 PM   #7
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We bought it from Mother Earth Brew Co in Vista. They are buying in bulk from a local farm and have 2 types currently. They are awesome people and are also a microbrew. They have a both a retail homebrewers store and a tasting room. Check them out at :

http://www.motherearthbrewco.com/

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