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Old 09-13-2012, 01:34 PM   #1
taishojojo
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Default Second Batch...

I carboyed my first batch. Tastes good (its cloudy though).

I started a second batch.
15 pounds Orange Blossom
Yeast Nutrient (half dose)
Bentonite
Acid Blend
Filtered Tap water to 5 gallons
A packet of Red Star Cote du Blanc dry yeast.
OG: 1.118

I reconstituted the yeast with 1/4 cup of honey and 1/2 cup of warm water (110) with a sprinkle of nutrient.

Ran the must with a drill stirer... so it was good and frothy (took forever to get a reading)

Part of my reading on this yeast was that it was supposed to be active and give off sulpher smells.

When I reconstituted... it behaved as I would expect. Got yeasty smelling and all that.
That was yesterday... 14 hrs later (this morning) I'm not seeing any activity.

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Old 09-14-2012, 08:48 PM   #2
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I probably just need patience... I got home form work yesterday and checked it and it was bubbling away.
Insert drill stir... degas and re-froth...

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Old 09-15-2012, 12:03 PM   #3
fatbloke
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not entirely sure why you've added bentonite and acid blend ?

After all, bentonite is for clearing stuff, and at this stage, you wouldn't want anything that will drag the yeast out of solution.....

Plus adding acid blend up front, is likely to make the batch even more acidic. If you just blended the honey and water (no heat), let it stand for an hour or so to settle, then measured the pH, you'd find that honey is actually already quite acidic, but we don't usually notice that because any acidic notes are masked by the sugars/sweetness of the honey.

It's currently recommended practice to only add the acid after the ferment is complete i.e. add it a little at a time, to taste, after the batch has been cleared.

At least you've got the bit about aeration in the early stages (which as you've already sussed out, has the benefit of helping shift some of the built up carbonic acid/CO2 - which also helps reduce pH swings that are commonly experienced with mead batches).......

If your first batch is still cloudy, then that's fine if you just want it too clear naturally. As it will probably drop clear over time. So keep it in bulk, rather than bottle, because we don't, as home brewers, have climate/temperature controlled storage, so the bulk storage thing is actually a convenient compromise. Plus it's easier to bottle off a cleared product etc etc......

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Old 09-15-2012, 05:26 PM   #4
taishojojo
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fatbloke View Post
not entirely sure why you've added bentonite and acid blend ?

After all, bentonite is for clearing stuff, and at this stage, you wouldn't want anything that will drag the yeast out of solution.....

Plus adding acid blend up front, is likely to make the batch even more acidic. If you just blended the honey and water (no heat), let it stand for an hour or so to settle, then measured the pH, you'd find that honey is actually already quite acidic, but we don't usually notice that because any acidic notes are masked by the sugars/sweetness of the honey.

It's currently recommended practice to only add the acid after the ferment is complete i.e. add it a little at a time, to taste, after the batch has been cleared.

At least you've got the bit about aeration in the early stages (which as you've already sussed out, has the benefit of helping shift some of the built up carbonic acid/CO2 - which also helps reduce pH swings that are commonly experienced with mead batches).......

If your first batch is still cloudy, then that's fine if you just want it too clear naturally. As it will probably drop clear over time. So keep it in bulk, rather than bottle, because we don't, as home brewers, have climate/temperature controlled storage, so the bulk storage thing is actually a convenient compromise. Plus it's easier to bottle off a cleared product etc etc......
Well.. my first batch I had help... second batch I altered a little. Ive read in a variety of sources that honey isn't as acidic as yeast would prefer. Acid additive isn't necessary but helps (from what Ive read and been told). The bentonite... I was imitating from the first batch. My brain says to save that for after fermentation but the guy helping me out seemed to think it would help.
I had read that it was preferable to space out your nutrients as opposed to all at once.

my first batch tasted excellent when I racked it... no 'hot-ness' has it were. Its only been clearing for a few days and I can read a newspaper through the bottle (mostly).

First batch (with wlp720) had little acitivity. hardly any bubbles. plenty of CO2, though. Id stir and take daily hydrometer readings; 2-4 points a day.

Second batch (red star cotes du blanc) lagged for 24hrs but has been bubbling eversince... 1 blurp per second in the vapor trap (lock, thingy).

I'm still figuring this out. I just gotta be patient.
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