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Old 09-30-2011, 02:35 PM   #1
MaineMatt
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Default Mead funk? With pics

This is my first batch of mead and I used a northern brewer kit. I put it into secondary a couple of weeks ago, and when I went down to the basement to check on it last night, I noticed a white "funk" growing on the surface.

A quick search here indicates possible bacterial contamination - do the pics look right for that? If so, is there anything I can do to salvage the batch?

Edit- the liquid level is right in line with a ridge on the carboy - that combined with some flash makes it look worse than it is in the second picture.

boutet-0205.jpg   boutet-0224.jpg  
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Old 09-30-2011, 04:01 PM   #2
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How does it smell/taste?

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Old 09-30-2011, 04:02 PM   #3
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What was in the kit?

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Old 09-30-2011, 04:14 PM   #4
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What was in the kit?
From the NB kit inventory -

- 12 lbs Ames Farm Artisanal Minnesota Honey.
- 4 packets yeast nutrient.
- Wyeast 4783 Rudesheimer Yeast

As for the smell/taste - it has a bit of a sourness or tang to it - there's the standard mead flavor underneath it, but the first impression is a bit tangy/sour (?).
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Old 09-30-2011, 04:21 PM   #5
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taste and smell it. then report back to us.

my first mead had white specks on top for a long time, tastes great - must have been something weird with the fermenting honey/yeast combination.

One alternative that could work for you is cold crashing it for a good long while then hitting it with a dose of microbial growth inhibitor like campden tablets or other sulfites and polyklar/bentonite. I don't think it will stop an active fermentation but it might be enough to get most of the bad stuff to drop out of solution for you to rack it again.

this will not undo what has already been changed in the flavor profile though.

Another option, keg it keep it really cold.

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Old 09-30-2011, 04:40 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by runningweird View Post
taste and smell it. then report back to us.

my first mead had white specks on top for a long time, tastes great - must have been something weird with the fermenting honey/yeast combination.

One alternative that could work for you is cold crashing it for a good long while then hitting it with a dose of microbial growth inhibitor like campden tablets or other sulfites and polyklar/bentonite. I don't think it will stop an active fermentation but it might be enough to get most of the bad stuff to drop out of solution for you to rack it again.

this will not undo what has already been changed in the flavor profile though.

Another option, keg it keep it really cold.
I have some Super-Kleer here that I was debating whether or not to use - depending on what's indicated by my taste test I may just toss that in there and rack it to a keg once it clarifies. I was going to bottle this batch and age it, but if it's got funk going now, a year in my basement probably won't do it much good.
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Old 10-01-2011, 04:24 PM   #7
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taste and smell it. then report back to us.
As for the smell/taste - it has a bit of a sourness'tang to it - there's the standard mead flavor underneath it, but the first impression is a bit tangy/sour (?).
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Old 10-17-2011, 06:30 PM   #8
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Well, I decdied to take a "wait and see" approach on this, and after 2 weeks, nothing's changed. It hasn't gotten any worse, but it hasn't improved/settled out either.

Any other thoughts?

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Old 10-18-2011, 06:24 AM   #9
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Is it a good tangy/sour? I brewed a sour mead that I thought was pretty good. If it's already done fermenting, you might as well age it and see what comes of it.

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