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Old 12-27-2007, 10:28 PM   #1
nsrstka
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Default Mead stuck fermentation

Hello all!

I think I have encountered a stuck fermentation in my first batch of mead here.

The recipe was 12 pounds of orange blossom honey and four gallons of water. I added some yeast nutrient from my local homebrew store at the rate suggested on the package (which I believe was one teaspoon per gallon but I may be incorrect). The original gravity was 1.098. I cooled the must down to the mid 70s and then pitched my re-hydrated 5g packet of Lalvin K1V-1116 after aerating as best I could with the carboy shake method. Fermentation kicked off pretty quickly and was going strong for a while. I let it sit in primary for about 7 weeks until visible signs of fermentation had slowed to a crawl. Like a fool I didn't think to check the gravity before I racked off of the yeast. The gravity came out to be 1.050! Way too thick and sweet! So...

Would it be advisable to re-pitch another dose of K1V-1116? If so, would I just re-hydrate and dump? Would I make something of a yeast starter with a small amount of fresh must at a quantity of like 1.020? Am I going to need to add some more nutrient? I have heard conflicting pieces of advise from homebrew shop employees and customers on this topic. Any advise from you guys would be much appreciated.

Thanks in advance!

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Old 12-28-2007, 09:22 PM   #2
malkore
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you need some yeast ENERGIZER in there. nutrient is good, but energizer is full of the nitrogen yeast needs to thrive, and that honey lacks. Beer wort is full of nitrogen and thus doesn't need the energizer.

7 weeks is just too long for mead. you should hit attenuation on a recipe like yours in 4 weeks or less.

I would indeed pitch another sachet of yeast. I wouldn't make a starter, you can rehydrate though, and I'd put the energizer in the hydration water just to help mix it.

I've also had success adding fruit to a stuck fermentation, as the nutrients and nitrogen will help the yeast resume fermentation. unfortunately you'll lose some of your orange blossom honey flavors as the fruit will over power it.

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