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Old 04-23-2006, 02:56 AM   #1
Cheesefood
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Default Mead Yield?

So I'm getting ready to brew my first mead next weekends. I have a couple of questions:

1. The kit I'm buying from NorthernBrewer says it takes 4 months, but it sounds like in reality it's up to a year before I drink. If this correct?

2. Should I use wine bottles or beer bottles for a dry mead? If wine bottles, how many will I yield?

3. I've never tasted HomeMead and I've only sampled commercial mead once, YEARS ago. Is it worth it?

4. Carbonated or flat?

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Old 04-23-2006, 03:35 AM   #2
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1. That is correct. It'll take a year or more before your mead is sufficiently aged to drink.

2. Go with beer bottles for smaller batches. Go with wine bottles for larger batches (at least, that's how I go about it). How many gallons are you making? A 750 ml bottle (a standard sized bottle) is roughly a quart, so you'll get around four bottles per gallon, give or take.

3. Totally. When you get good at mead, try a melomel (mead with fruit).

4. Start with flat. If you like it flat, then go carbonated. If you should go carbonated, make sure you get your hands on some heavier champagne bottles, otherwise you'll have to deal with "glass grenades."

Tell us how it goes

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Old 04-23-2006, 02:06 PM   #3
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What Odin said!.

I have 5 kinds of mead in bottles right now. If you ever get near the Quad Cities you are welcome to come over and try some.

As far as the still mead (no carbonation) vs carbonated, I usually (but not always) do a mix of the two.

Use 12 oz beer bottles. You can usually get 2 wine glasses out of one bottle. And get a couple of champagne bottles to put away for a couple of years or for gifts.

You can drink them as soon as you bottle it. However, depending on the ingredients, you may have to wait for 6 months or so for items like ginger to mellow out.

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Old 04-23-2006, 02:42 PM   #4
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OdinOneEye Answered your all questions with excellent replies! The only question I'll chip in is this one -

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesefood
3. I've never tasted HomeMead and I've only sampled commercial mead once, YEARS ago. Is it worth it?
I'd have just got the main ingredients (i.e. honey and water) locally and just got the yeast/nutrient etc from the HB Shop rather than a 'kit'. Maybe it has equipment with it that made it more attractive to you, I don't know. If you liked the commercial version of mead then it's definately worth it. Mead is very hard to find commercially and is expensive in the UK. Making my own solved that!
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Old 04-23-2006, 03:48 PM   #5
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I made a batch of mead 10 years ago. I never could drink it because it was very dry and had a sharp alcohol bite to it. I just used honey, water, yeast nutrient, and champagne yeast. I missed something when I made it just not sure what.
I bet with your kit, the mead will turn out much better.

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Old 04-23-2006, 04:03 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichBrewer
..very dry and had a sharp alcohol bite to it. I just used honey, water, yeast nutrient, and champagne yeast. I missed something when I made it just not sure what.
Though not necessary, it could have been that you left out an acid blend to give it a bit of tartness.

Since your brew was very dry it seems that you let it ferment out all the way giving you a low FG. I say that kind of biting my tongue because my last meads fermented out to 0.996!
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Old 04-23-2006, 07:24 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichBrewer
I made a batch of mead 10 years ago. I never could drink it because it was very dry and had a sharp alcohol bite to it. I just used honey, water, yeast nutrient, and champagne yeast. I missed something when I made it just not sure what.
I bet with your kit, the mead will turn out much better.
Harsh dry/alcohol tastes do mellow if you can have the patience to age them.
The Golden Rule (as with all brews but particulary true with Mead) is the higher the ABV the longer the aging needed. The mead in my sig had a dry finish and is 12% ABV. I bottled it in Sep 05 and don't intend on drinking it for at least a couple of years.
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Old 04-24-2006, 12:33 PM   #8
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Thanks for the input! I went with a kit to keep me honest and prevent me from getting creative. This is my first time, so I want someone to select ingredients for me and make sure I don't F it up. Perhaps in the future I'll get bold, but this time it's all about following instructions closely.

I'm thinking of going flat and putting it in wine bottles. For some reason, this just seems classier. Brown or Green glass? I'm going to keep it cellared in my basement for about a year so that I can enjoy it on my 32nd birthday.

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Old 04-25-2006, 03:00 AM   #9
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I say brown glass, (thereby answering the question that requires the least skill), just because Mead always feels to me like it needs to look old. So... there you go. Or clear, actually, so you can enjoy the wonderful color while you wait for it to grow up.

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Old 04-25-2006, 10:53 AM   #10
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If you're making still (non-carbonated) mead you can use beer bottles. I do even for carbonated meads and they work fine.

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