Originally Posted by BWRIGHT
Pure stupidity? You'll have to explain that one. I have many reasons to pasteurize, and I can assure you that stupidity is not one of them. I can taste sorbates/sulphites in most commercial wines/ciders. It is not a pleasant taste. That is the main reason I choose to pasteurize. Also, if you want to bacskweeten AND carbonate (without a kegging setup), pasteurization would be necessary. Pastuerization would almost certainly extend the shelf life vs. not doing it and not adding chemicals. I'm trying to figure out the proper levels of sorbate and k meta on this mead because I've read and can now taste that the strawberry aroma/flavor is delicate. Even, despite the fact that I used 23 lbs of berries. I've seen where many people have had mead corks pop that well over 10% as well. I'd like to avoid that since I'll have $90 and 6 months of waiting invested.
Yes I fully understand that. Strawberry is a hard flavour to convey in the form that we enjoy from the original fruit. Ergo to get some of the original flavour means secondary addition. Presuming that's what you'd be aiming for.....
Now while you seem to have taken my comment as a personal sleight (that wasn't my intention), I'm happy to explain......
Strawberries aren't just difficult to use and retain flavour, but they're also heat sensitive and the flavour and any colour you managed to retain are likely to be degraded under exposure to heat.
Equally, alcohol is also heat sensitive and would normally escape under heating but presuming that the bottles are filled and sealed, some flavour modification would most likely take place. Hence all that time and money you allude to being possibly wasted.
Also, pateurisation kills off the yeast. The point of having some viable yeast cells, so that any fermentable sugars can produce some CO2 to carbonate the batch in bottles.
If pasteurisation kills the yeast cells, how do you expect to carbonate the batch ? That would require the addition of more yeast, defeating the point of some form of pasteurisation procedure.
So plenty of strawberry flavour, sweetness and carbonation will need kegging kit.
People worry about possible bugs and contaminants, fermentation and about 10+ percent alcohol are usually fine too sort that, rendering pasteurisation unnecessary.
I hope you see why I made that point. I'm sorry if it sounded a little abrasive, but I really feel it would be a bad move to heat your batch.
Sweet and carbonated ? Without kegging, you'd likely be looking to attain the carbonation from a dry (ish) batch that has been artificially sweetened. Either with careful selection of the right artificial sweetener (I've read good things of xylitol, but not tried it myself) or with a non-fermentable, natural sweetener......maybe lactose or something like that ?