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Old 09-28-2012, 07:56 PM   #1
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Default No fermentation, even after adding more yeast

Hey guys I have a blueberry mead thats been sitting in it's carboy for around 7 months now. Started with just 10 pounds of honey trying to make 5 gallons of the mead. Racked it once already and added 3 more pounds of honey, that was about 5.5 months ago.

Since then it's just been sitting, I kind of forgot about it. I still had 2 pounds of honey that I was wanting to throw in it so I did yesterday when I racked it for the 2nd time. Waited a few hours and didn't see any fermentation. Felt like maybe the yeast died since they had been sitting in there for so long so I decided to get another packet of yeast. Threw that into the mead with out 'starting' it, and that was about 24 hours ago. Still no signs of bubbling.

I'm wondering what has happened. Maybe the current climate of the mead is too strong for the yeast to start up. Was wondering if any of you could give me suggestions. Would really love for the additional 2 pounds to be eaten up before I bottle. Maybe I should just wait, but I've never had yeast be this 'dormant' before. I'd appreciate any help. Thanks a lot.



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Old 09-28-2012, 08:00 PM   #2
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First, be patient and wait a day or two.

Any idea what the alcohol content is on that mead? What was the OG? Where's the gravity at now? Did you re-pitch? Did you roust the trub?

I'm willing to bet you have a high alcohol problem that's just killing the yeast unless you think the temperature is just too low.



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Old 09-28-2012, 08:58 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aiptasia View Post
First, be patient and wait a day or two.

Any idea what the alcohol content is on that mead? What was the OG? Where's the gravity at now? Did you re-pitch? Did you roust the trub?

I'm willing to bet you have a high alcohol problem that's just killing the yeast unless you think the temperature is just too low.
Sadly, I didn't measure the OG =(

I pitched a new packet of yeast in yesterday and yes i did roust the trub.

It's possible the alcohol is too high but most mead recipes of 5 gallons usually calls for 15 pounds of honey I've seen. I'm using D-47 yeast btw.

Temp is around 72F right now.
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Old 09-28-2012, 09:03 PM   #4
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Its entirely possible that the new yeast you pitched couldn't hack it in the alcohol rich environment from the initial ferment. See if you can add up all the ingredients you put in the initial and get a rough OG. Then take an FG and if you are are high in alcomahol then presto... problem identified.

I am pulling this out my ass as I have never done it myself but based on the other semi related posts I have read, the answer should be something like that.

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Old 09-28-2012, 09:45 PM   #5
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Off the top of my head I suspect your O.G. was approx 1.065-1.075 since you started with 2#/gallon, then you added another three # to the five gallons. I would hazard a guess that it is high alcohol environment also.

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Old 09-28-2012, 11:08 PM   #6
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The great new is that your must is not screwed and doomed to be a cloying soup of sweet harshness. First wait a full 2 - 2 1/2 days to see if your yeast takes off. My skeeter pee batch took 30 hours to start fermenting so you have some time. If nothing happens then go out and get some Lalvin K1V-1116. Next make a big starter as follows

2 cups water
1/2 cup honey
1/4 tsp yeast nutrients
10 chopped up raisins

Sprinkle the yeast pack on top of the starter must but do not mix it in. Cover with a paper towel and rubberband and wait 2 hours. Then add in 1/2 cup of your must & wait another two hours. Repeat the last step still you have 4 cups of liquid. After the first two hours you should notice lots of activity in the starter and it should not slow down for the whole 10-12 hours. Pitch the yeast and that should get ya going.

Keep us informed.

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Old 09-29-2012, 12:02 AM   #7
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Cool. Thanks for all the replies. I went out and got some different yeast with a higher alcohol yield. I'll wait at least until tomorrow evening to determine if i should pitch that or not.

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Old 10-04-2012, 09:56 PM   #8
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Just wanted to update you guys.

I had no fermentation from the initial yeast. A day after my last post I went and got a packet of EC-1118 yeast. Prepared that in a class with a bit of sugar, and once the yeast started doing their thing I threw it into my carboy.

That day it did a little bubbling but not much, and after about a day it completely stopped. Shake it every once in awhile and a couple bubbles will come out of the air lock but thats it. I should have said that the batch is probably down to 4 gallons now due to the initial volume the blueberries took when i first threw the batch together. Possibly there is just too much booze in the carboy, maybe I should just let it sit and bottle in a month or so. Any final tips?

Thanks for reading.

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Old 10-04-2012, 10:07 PM   #9
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If EC1118 isn't fermenting then your alcohol is already wicked high. EC1118 is my super yeast.

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Old 10-04-2012, 11:01 PM   #10
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You should have followed Arpolis's starter suggestion.



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