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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Mead Forum > Sweet mead flavor calibration
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Old 09-11-2008, 06:03 AM   #1
bluefoxicy
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Default Sweet mead flavor calibration

Anyway while drinking I was thinking about sweet mead and I think I figured out a way to get it the way I want.

First off, taste test it. Add the honey to hot water, pulling an occasional sample and tasting it. Stop adding honey when it's about as sweet as you want it, possibly good a little less or little more sweet.

The yeast I'm using should attenuate at 5-6% ABV. So, I'll take a gravity reading here. Water is 1.000, so subtract that from the reading and divide your mass of added honey by this, and you have unit mass per 1 gravity. (divide this by 1000 to get unit mass per .001). Multiply 6% by 0.75 (0.045), and multiply your unit mass per 1 gravity by this number.

Then add that much extra honey. Ferment.

If your yeast indeed attenuates at 6%, you should have 6% alcohol and a sweet mead of however much sweetness your last tasting had. Does this sound sane?

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Old 09-11-2008, 02:38 PM   #2
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Your theory is correct, but what the heck kind of yeast do you have that's only going to hit 6%?

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Old 09-11-2008, 03:53 PM   #3
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On top of what yeast kicks it at 6%, most will go beyond their listed "limits" with stepped additions of sugars. So if you add more honey with out stabilization, then the yeast will more then likely ferment at least some of your "back-sweetening" honey. So it may get a bit sweeter, but it will probably get a bit stronger to.

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Old 09-11-2008, 11:57 PM   #4
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And as it gets stronger, the sweetness diminishes since its now alcohol, not sugar. You may actually dry it out by raising the ABV.

I also agree, the yeasts I've used, always attenuate higher than their listed range. S-33 is a beer yeast that should stop at 11%. I've pushed 13.5% ABV with it, twice.

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Old 09-12-2008, 12:32 AM   #5
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Okay, so find a yeast that attenuates and raise the gravity by enough to result in 11% more alcohol.

And I didn't mean add it after, I mean figure this out before pitching the yeast, and add as much honey as you figure will be converted by the yeast (i.e. if you think 3 pounds will turn into alcohol, add 3 more pounds). Then pitch the yeast.

Also I have no idea where I got that 6% number. I just looked at everything I have that tells me about everything I'm trying to do and nothing even lists an ABV number.

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Old 09-12-2008, 03:47 AM   #6
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Why don't you just ferment a batch of mead and use potassium sorbate to retard further fermentation and backsweeten before bottling? Same dif...

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Old 09-12-2008, 04:14 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by homebrewer_99 View Post
Why don't you just ferment a batch of mead and use potassium sorbate to retard further fermentation and backsweeten before bottling? Same dif...
heh heh heh

You Said Retard.
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Old 09-12-2008, 09:48 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigKahuna View Post
heh heh heh
You Said Retard.
Hehh he hhheeee, you beat me to it.

But yes, ferment, stop it, (Crash cool?), back sweeten.
Making good mead is as tough as making good wine, nature does what it does, but biting my nails for 1-3 years gets pretty old. But the end result has never disappointed me. I just need more carboys.
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