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Old 11-10-2008, 05:14 PM   #1
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Default mead w/o phosphates?

I am new to wine-making, and mead is on my eventual 'to-do' list. Can I make mead w/o the use of phosphates? I have some relatives that are allergic to phosphates (makes them violently sick), and wanted to be able to share what I make eventually......

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Old 11-10-2008, 05:21 PM   #2
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You mean sulfites?

You can make mead without sulfites- you control the ingredients, and you can put whatever you want in it.

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Old 11-10-2008, 06:24 PM   #3
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::slaps hand on forehead::

yes, sulfites, LOL.

I just saw the basic recipe having phosphates, and mixed up the two words, LOL!

I want to make the wine's with as FEW ingredients as possible - so I wonder if I can make a simple mead with just honey/water/yeast?

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Old 11-10-2008, 06:38 PM   #4
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You can, but it takes longer than adding a bit of yeast nutrient.

Long, in mead terms, is frequently years. 4-5 years in the case of two batches I've made without nutrient.

You might help yourself out by making a BIG starter from malt extract (which has nutrients yeast like). You can let it finish and decant off most of the liquid before pitching it in your mead.

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Old 11-10-2008, 06:54 PM   #5
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well, I definitely don't have the patience to wait THAT long, LOL! So, the phosphates ARE the nutrients?

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Old 11-10-2008, 09:54 PM   #6
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DAP (di-ammonium phosphate) is the most common "yeast nutrient". Dead yeast is another - look for "nutritional yeast" at a health food store - "brewers yeast" often has trace amounts of hop residue that leave a bitter taste.

You seem pretty sure that your friends are sensitive to sulfites, not phosphates - in any case, most/all(?) the DAP is not going to be in the finished mead - it will be in the yeast, transformed, and get left on the bottom of the fermenter, for the most part.

Honey and water is a barren environment for yeast as opposed to grape juice or malted barley extract (aka wort).

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Old 11-10-2008, 11:00 PM   #7
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thank you very much for your info - I will add phosphates (yeast nutrient) and not sulfites (preservative) I can only find one mead around here to purchase - and it's alcohol content is pretty weak..... I think I can do better (I hope!)

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Old 11-11-2008, 06:59 AM   #8
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bkvail - All the meads I can buy here are "sugar/honey/little alcohol". Enough to send a diabetic into a coma. To be honest the first mead I made tasted like rocket fuel after a month, and it still tasted better than what I could buy.
If your in a hurry, I would recommend a braggot, per gallon try a 1.5 lb honey, and a 1.5 lb LME or a 1 lb DME mix. The more you increase the honey, you add more time to the fermentation and ageing.
I would recommend reading the Wiki, the stickies on the basic / new brewer / etc forums. They will expand your knowledge, reading the AG / equipment / DIY sections will blow your mind.
Best of luck, and feel free to ask questions, just do a little research before to ward off the A..-h0..s like me.

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Old 11-11-2008, 01:07 PM   #9
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I'm gonna have to learn what all the abbreviations mean too! And get and learn to use a hydrometer! My local wine store had one last hydrometer - and it was broken. Then they had one that was a hydrometer/thermometer combo, but it was more than a foot long! Would have had to get a special vessel to do measurements in with that, LOL.

I had to google 'SWMBO' because I saw everybody was using it, and I couldn't figure out what it meant! I guess it's the MEN that are using it anyhow, LOL. That's why I didn't know what it was! I guess I *am* SWMBO in my house

LME and DME are liquid and dried malt extract? I hadn't heard of those because I hadn't planned on making any beer (much to hubby's chagrin!)

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