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Old 05-03-2011, 04:22 PM   #1
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Default What to do with 15 lbs of free honey

Hello all, this would be my first post on this forum.

I have been an every couple of months beer brewer for about 12 years now. I have also made a few good ciders ( and some notso good ones ) from both juice and picked apples and now I have decided to jump into mead.

Oh and I'm getting really good at raising huge colonies of spider mites, but not so good at growing healthy hops.

I curently am at the end of the primary for Northern Brewers Semi Sweet Artisianal kit using Wyeast 4783 Rudesheimer Yeast. OG: 1.080-1.083. In another bucket I have 3 Gallons of apple juice and 5 lbs of honey ( OG untested due to dropping hydrometer on floor after testing NB kit) at the end of primary that I threw on top of the leas from a batch of cider fermeted with cote des blancs. Wow talk about a fast start that was. 20 minutes tops before regular airlock activity.

The point is that I have a friend of a friend that wants mead. He works for a local bee joint and says that he will give me all the honey I can handle as long as he gets some mead back in turn.

He dropped off 3 5lbs jugs the other day. Honey is light to med color and good med flavor.

Do I want to use all 15 in a 5 gallon batch or should I lighten it up a little for the first run?

For the next month basement temp should still be pretty contsant low 60's.
Throw it on top of the Rudesheimer or Cote Des Blancs leas or start fresh with D-47?
Or even split it between all three? Which won't be much of an experiment at all because I can never seem to keep all data with the right batch through the end.

Thanks for the input.

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Old 05-03-2011, 05:10 PM   #2
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The rule of thumb on this forum seems to be 2.5 to 3.5lb /gallon of mead for a very dry to very sweet mead (depending on yeast of course)....

Personally I'd go with all 15 lb mix with water to about 5 gallons, add yeast nutrient and some yeast and let it go, but that is me, plus I like it sweet so even more would be ok to me. - oh and be prepared to let it sit for 6+ months, or even +years

Btw, this woudl make a 'straight' mead - meaning no spices, no other flavors, etc. You could at racking or bottling do something to change that if you wanted to.

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Old 05-03-2011, 07:41 PM   #3
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You could make a Cyser (apple Juice or Cider) with half of it and a Pyment (Alexanders Grape Concentrate) with the other half. Then you can end up with 50 Bottles of mead and taste choices versus 25 bottles of a straight mead.

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Old 05-03-2011, 08:46 PM   #4
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Make free mead of course! But seriously, look at MoAM or JoAM. I made these both and though it took nearly a year for them to come to fruition, it was worth the wait.

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Old 05-03-2011, 09:59 PM   #5
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Since you didn't purchase the honey from a licensed Apiary, you'll not have obtained a valid certificate of quality with your honey. Your best option would be to send it to me for proper disposal. Within 48 hours of proper disposal, you'll receive your Honey Disposal Assurance email.

Thank you,
Honey Disposal Board

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Old 05-03-2011, 10:00 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drac0 View Post
Since you didn't purchase the honey from a licensed Apiary, you'll not have obtained a valid certificate of quality with your honey. Your best option would be to send it to me for proper disposal. Within 48 hours of proper disposal, you'll receive your Honey Disposal Assurance email.

Thank you,
Honey Disposal Board
Man, I started reading your reply and thought "Is this guy serious?!". Then I finished reading, lol.
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Old 05-04-2011, 03:46 AM   #7
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You gotta do what you gotta do to get fresh ingredients!

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Old 05-04-2011, 04:19 PM   #8
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OK so all 15 lbs in a 5 gallon batch.
Now I just need to decide on the yeast. Any thoughts on the 3 options?

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Old 05-09-2011, 08:32 PM   #9
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Lavin D-47 great simple dry yeast nice chardenney hint to it...good for something light like meads

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Old 05-10-2011, 03:28 PM   #10
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Lavin D-47 great simple dry yeast nice chardenney hint to it...good for something light like meads
I mostly use D-47. It runs clean and likes the 60-68 temp range. You may through off some fusels at 70 and above. Sounds as if you are good.

Here is what I would do:
12 pounds of honey
1 tablespoon of yeast nutrient
1 tablespoon of yeast energizer
2 packets of Lavin D-47
5 gal of water (preferably spring water)

Put that all but the yeast in the brew bucket and heat to just melt the honey down, you don't need to boil. When done, put in a plastic cup your yeast with a bit of water and some sugar, room temp. Wait till it's foamy and until your must is below 98 degrees. Then toss in the yeast. Stirr well, transfer to your brew bucket or carboy. Then wait until your air lock has slowed down until 1 bubble for every 30 seconds or so, rack to secondary. That should be around a month or so. Once in the secondary, I'd say 2 months time it should start to clear, You then mix in Potasium Sorbate, about 1 tablespoon to stop the yeast. Wait for a week then add the remaining honey. You can add flavors in the form of fruit juice or a spice at any time after you rack it once.

Rack off of fruit/spices after around a month or so. Leave for 2 months and take a tablespoon of Sparkloid in 8 oz of water, boil it and then toss that into your must. Wait 2 weeks to a month and rack off the sediment. It should be really clear at this point. You then bottle and wait for 6-8 months. Now you have Excelent mead. You wont be disapointed. (you should have about 8 six packs of 12 oz bottles worth)

If your friend has more honey for free, I wouldn't mind some. I would even give over a couple of six packs to him.
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