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-   -   Raisins (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f30/raisins-377609/)

scottv 12-31-2012 06:23 PM

I see a lot of people using raisins to help ferment. My question is there a certain type if raisin or just raisins in general. Also can you still add nutrient and energizer on top of it or does it defeat the purpose.

Arpolis 12-31-2012 10:30 PM

Raisins are cheap tannins and nutrients. No one type is inherently better over the other if using just to provide more nutrients. If you have the proper yeast nutrients then I would not worry about adding raisins unless you want the flavor. In that case add fresh grapes/grape juice/grape puree from the LHBS instead of raisins.

WVMJ 12-31-2012 11:14 PM

Zante Currant raisins give a little better flavor than the usual raisins, might be worth trying to make a raisin mead with them. I dont think I have seen grape puree, but wine grape concentrate also works well and wont clog up your racking tube. WVMJ

scottv 01-01-2013 12:42 AM

Ok so you can do both but do not really need to.

jackfrost 01-01-2013 01:14 AM

I like the raisins flavor I use then in all Mead's

fatbloke 01-01-2013 07:14 AM

A small handful (per gallon) is good as there is some nutrient value plus they can also help with "body" (viscosity), but if you use too much you can get sherry/port/"raisiny oxidation" sort of notes - which judges of comps mark down for......unless its a batch made to have that as a specific attribute, like a port or sherry with honey notes coming through in the taste......

scottv 01-01-2013 07:32 AM

Thanks y'all. I'm about a week away from starting my second mead. Want this one to be much better.

saramc 01-01-2013 10:09 AM

Scottv...I do not hesitate to use raisins in my mead. They are a great nutrient source for mead, and we know that nutrient deficiency is an issue in mead--unless you tackle it. If I am working on what will be a light colored mead I use golden raisins or a blend of golden/dark. I typically use 8-12oz per gallon. If the mead will be darker then I use plain dark raisins, though zante currants are my favorite dark 'raisin'(though not a raisin, but you know what I mean). I do not worry if the raisins have sulfites, but I do look for oil and avoid those particular ones. The amount of sulfites added to preserve the raisins will not inhibit your yeast, but you can do a few rinses in boiling water if that bothers you.

I will also haunt nuts.com because they have a huge variety of raisins, and sometimes I even find the raisins on the stems--fabulous little dried drops of sugar!

You mentioned you would like to improve your mead. Would you care to share your recipe, start date, bottling date, etc--perhaps we can troubleshoot? The biggest tip, and you may already know is: quality in/quality out, all in good time.

WVMJ 01-01-2013 03:16 PM

Sara, they are made from grapes, what makes the zantes not a raisin? THanks, WVMJ

jackfrost 01-01-2013 04:16 PM

You can also use craisins and prunes. To ad depth. Or whole cherries with pit to at woodsy flavor.....I like to use apple wood chips.

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