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Old 12-18-2008, 03:47 PM   #1
beer_guy_dave
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Default melomel project update

About 4 months ago I started a "mother mead". 12 pounds clover honey, champaign yeast and water to 5 gallons. I split this into 5 x 1 gallon secondaries on top of frozen blueberries, blackberries, cherries, peaches and strawberries. Left on fruit for 2 weeks, then racked off. Will rack once or twice off of the remaining sediment, then I intend to add a little flavor concentrate to each ( I'd like a little more flavor intensity). I could not find strawberry flavoring, so I'm going to use a little strawberry jello mix instead.
I think this will work. Are there any better options for strawberry flavoring?
Kool aid mix maybe??

After it's clear, I'll age for several months before bottling. The colors are amazing! Once I decide which one I like best, I'll make a 5 gal batch of it.

Happy Holidays to all,

Dave

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Old 12-18-2008, 04:06 PM   #2
ContinentalDrifter
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How about frozen strawberry concentrate or even a can of the frozen Bacardi mixer (or another mixer type thing)? Kool-Aid just sounds dirty. There are also Mott's unfrozen cans of strawberry-kiwi concentrate, but I don't know if they come in plain strawberry.

There's also strawberry extract from the baking aisle, but I don't know how well that would work. It wouldn't change your FG significantly and would not provide anything fermentable. Or maybe strawberry soda extract?

You should be able to mail order anything that isn't frozen.

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Old 12-18-2008, 04:45 PM   #3
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You only left them on the fruit for 2 weeks? How much fruit flavor did they pick up? You definitely could have gotten the level of fruit intensity by just leaving them on the fruit longer. Just a heads up for next time.

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Old 12-18-2008, 05:13 PM   #4
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When I took the fruit out, it looked pretty well spent. I started with fruit which was frozen fresh in season. I thawed it , mashed it and put it in grain bags to keep out most of the unwanted junk. I think i read somewhere that too long on the fruit can yield some "off" flavors. I'm sold on the jello because I think it will work (only going to use a small amount), and if it works well, I'll probably try it in some future meads. It's cheap and comes in lots of flavors. I'll let you all know how it comes out.

Dave

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Old 12-18-2008, 07:15 PM   #5
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I had a very similar plan for a mead i have in the primary now. How long did you primary before moving to the secondary with fruit? I was planning on a month, but am coming up on that date now.

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Old 12-18-2008, 10:45 PM   #6
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Duck,

I don't have my notes handy, but I recall starting this mead at the end of Sept and the initial yeast pooped out early. I re-pitched with chanpaign yeast and finished the ferment. Didn't rack onto the fruit until the last week of November. When I do this again, I'll start with champaign yeast and wait til fermentation is complete. From this experience, I think a month would do it.
By the way, I'll probably use blueberries the next time. My daughter recently moved into a new house and we discovered a whole row of high bush blueberries there - a virtually limitless supply!! To add to my good fortune, I was in the local supermarket, the last place I'd think to look for specialty honeys, and found orange blossom honey, alfafa honey, tupelo honey and buckwheat honey. Not real cheap, but I'd probably use these
as "accent" honeys.

Dave

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Old 12-20-2008, 08:29 AM   #7
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"accent" honeys? Or accidental? As in trying to explain to your SWMBO how you bought 20 lbs of specialty honey?
You could try "I was thinking of you and bought all this sweet honey and baking chocolates". Oh well, I could make a mead and some good stouts out of them for our next anniversary.

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