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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Mead Forum > Suggestions for First Mead?
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Old 01-10-2007, 07:47 PM   #1
Walter Sobchak
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Default Suggestions for First Mead?

Hi everybody. I've been homebrewing for about six months, and I'm thinking about attempting to make a batch of mead. If anybody has any suggestions about what to make (dry, sweet, etc.), I would appreciate it. Thanks!

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Old 01-11-2007, 12:40 AM   #2
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My first batch was a sweet mead. I actually added about a 1/2 pound too much honey so it's going to be a little sweeter then I expected.

It's been in secondary for about 2 1/2 months now, not sure when I will bottle it. I did taste it a few weeks ago and damn it was tasting good, the alcohol taste is mellowing out really well... just a slight taste.

If you interested you can view my thread HERE.

Hope that helps.

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Old 01-11-2007, 01:12 AM   #3
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A simple mead is Joe's Ancient Orange Mead. It kind of goes against traditional meads, though- it even uses bread yeast.

http://www.winepress.us/forums/index.php?showtopic=6114

I made this, and it's a tasty still mead that finishes sweet. It's quick, for a mead- drinkable in about 3 months or so. I bottled it last summer and only opened one bottle so far.

Lorena

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Old 01-12-2007, 03:54 PM   #4
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wow very nice, this makes me want to try a batch of Mead sometime.

I have a frat friend that swears by it!

I have an extra carboy too!

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Old 01-12-2007, 04:09 PM   #5
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When trying something for the first time, I have always defaulted to doing a Papa Charlie recipe, most often from the Bible. Being mead, I did his Prickly Pear Cactus Mead and it is absolutely delicious. You can't go wrong with the Papa.

Papa Charlie = Charlie Papazian
Bible = The Complete joy of Homebrewing (I you don't gotst, getst.)

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Old 01-12-2007, 06:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fiery Sword
When trying something for the first time, I have always defaulted to doing a Papa Charlie recipe, most often from the Bible. Being mead, I did his Prickly Pear Cactus Mead and it is absolutely delicious. You can't go wrong with the Papa.

Papa Charlie = Charlie Papazian
Bible = The Complete joy of Homebrewing (I you don't gotst, getst.)

Hey Sword is there any way you could post or pm the recipe for me?

My wife and I love the prickly pear margaritas so if it is anything like that it is a must have around here, thanks bro.
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Old 01-12-2007, 06:23 PM   #7
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I'll post it from my notes when I get home from work. I've seen versions of this recipe on the 'net that were not the same as Papazian's, though they credited him. I doubt he changed the recipe because there is a whole section in the book about how he makes this mead anually and buries a few new bottles at the top of Mead Mountain (location = secret) and drinks older buried ones from 10+ years ago. This guy is my idol.

....Recipe and notes to follow! Cheers!

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Old 01-12-2007, 07:27 PM   #8
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It'd be fun to do a great mead (over 8 years old) but who has the patience? You'd have to make a lot of mead if you like it that much.

I did a dry one that's So-So, but it's still under a year old. It's sitting in a keg on CO2 because I wanted it bubbly.

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Old 01-12-2007, 11:02 PM   #9
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Papazian Prickly Pear Cactus Mead
West Revere Brewery Variation

20 lbs. Mesquite Honey (I used Trader Joe's "100% Desert Mesquite Honey"
6 lbs. Prickly Pear Cactus fruits
1/4 tsp. powdered yeast nutrient
1 tbsp pectin enzyme

1/2 oz. (Dry) Lalvin EC-1118 Saccharomyces Bayanus champagne yeast
1/2 oz. (Dry) Red Star Flor Sherry yeast

SG 1.130-1.150 (I got 1.168!)
FG 1.025-1.050 (Me = 1.028)

Cut pricklies into 1/4"x1/4" sections. Place prickly segments into 2.5 gallons of cold water and bring to boil. Boil 2 hours. Around the 25 minute mark, this liquid lost it's initial deep red color and turned a golden. Explanation from the pros?

Meanwhile, bring 20 lbs. honey to boil with 1 gallon of cold water. Boil 15 minutes.

Boil 1.5 cup water then transfer to small glass container (jar, pyrex, flask). Cool to 100F and add 1 oz. (total) of yeast combination, let sit for 30 minutes.

Pour honey liquid into plastic bucket. Strain fruit liquid into bucket/honey "wort". Cool wort to 76F. Transfer to glass fermenter and pitch yeast/nutrient/pectin.

Ferment at 70-77F. Fermentation can take up to a year to complete. The mead is ready to bottle when fully cleared.

My schedule went as such:
9/11/05 - wort, pitched
9/19/05 - vigorous fermentation!
2/3/06 - mead has cleared significantly, 2-3" whiteish trub on bottom, yellow/gold color
10/17/06! - finally bottled 'er! It was lonely in the cellar all those months....

I wanted to prime half for a "sparkling" mead and leave half still. For the half batch of priming solution:
Boiled 2 cups TJ's mesquite honey w/ 8 cups water for 10 minutes
Cooled to 76F
Pitched with 1g Lalvin EC-1118
Racked mead to plastic bucket, added priming solution, bottled.

2.5 months in the bottle and there still isn't much carbonation but the stuff is amazing. Well worth the wait. I'm going to get another batch going soon because as Cheese mentioned, it is just too hard to wait long enough. I hope to keep my hands of 4-5 bottles until the summer.

Let me know how it goes for you!!!!!
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Old 01-13-2007, 03:55 AM   #10
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Great! Thanks Fiery Sword

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