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Old 03-28-2013, 05:56 PM   #1
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Default Your experience with honey in secondary.

So, I brewed an American Wheat Ale. I originally was going to add apricot or peach puree to secondary, but have been thinking about going the way of honey. I have seen conflicting info on this, and some say that the honey does not add any flavor, and you cannot tell that it was even added. I would think that adding it to the secondary, though restarting fermentation, would still leave some of the honey characteristics behind. Have any of you guys tried this, and what was your experience? Could you taste the honey afterwards?

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Old 03-28-2013, 06:02 PM   #2
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I have added a pound of lime blossom honey after primary fermentation before and holy hell YES you could taste it. I guess what I am saying is it depends on the honey, and lime blossom honey does not belong in beer, not even a saison.

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Old 03-28-2013, 06:09 PM   #3
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You won't get much if any added flavor after the yeast gets done with it. You're probably considering adding 1# per 5 gallons. A mead may have between 3-5# per gallon. You'll get it at those levels but not so much in a beer. It's 100% fermentable so it will increase the gravity but it will also thin the beer out a bit. Just keep that in mind.

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Old 03-28-2013, 06:15 PM   #4
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try adding it a couple days into the ferment so the yeast has time to get the sugars you want them to get

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Old 03-28-2013, 06:24 PM   #5
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lol. What would you think about orange blossom?

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Old 03-28-2013, 06:26 PM   #6
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I add honey to secondary all the time, I prefer to use the darkest honey that I can find. I've tried at 10 minutes left in the boil and flame out as well, and found that adding to secondary gives a much more attenuated beer. When added before primary I've had to rouse the yeast to get it to finish everything on 1.080+ beer.

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Old 03-28-2013, 06:46 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by winterc View Post
I add honey to secondary all the time, I prefer to use the darkest honey that I can find. I've tried at 10 minutes left in the boil and flame out as well, and found that adding to secondary gives a much more attenuated beer. When added before primary I've had to rouse the yeast to get it to finish everything on 1.080+ beer.
Can you taste the honey when you add it to secondary? I just want to be able to taste it without adding too much. I planned on a lb or so.
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Old 03-30-2013, 03:11 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poobah58 View Post
It's 100% fermentable so it will increase the gravity but it will also thin the beer out a bit. Just keep that in mind.
I almost never jump on people for statements on this site but that is simply not true. 85-95%, which nearly every reliable source sights, is the general agreement. Palmer puts it at 85-90% and beersmith at 90%. Unless your situation is ideal for secondary fermentation, you won't get much higher than 90%. Being 100% fermentable and fermenting 100% are two different things.

A big consideration in term so taste is the type of honey, as pointed out by another poster. Clover is virtually useless. Orange blossom is decent. Buckwheat and a few others are considered quite potent but not always the "honey" flavor we think of.
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Old 03-30-2013, 03:22 PM   #9
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I stand corrected. It still won't do much flavor wise at 1# per gallon. At least not in my experience. I've tried Pumpkin Honey in a Tripel and Orange Blossom in a Honey Wheat. Can't say that I could really notice the honey at all.

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Old 04-04-2013, 05:18 PM   #10
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Well I got 2lbs of Orange Blossom I was going to use for my honey wheat. I was just hoping I would get some of that honey taste. Got some conflicting opinions here. Guess there is only way to find out!..

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