Thanks for the info. Did you follow the exact proportions in the recipe or use a different amount of honey? Can you taste the orange? And lastly, do you happen to know your OG or FG?
The only thing I changed was the honey. I used 16 lbs. I tried it at 7 months and it still needed to chill out a little more. I'm at 9 now so I might crack another one pretty soon. The orange was very lite. I'm hoping the orange and vanilla come threw a little more over time. I think my O.G. Was 1.110 and I'll have to check my F.G. Later when I get home. It ended up being 13%.
Going to whip up a batch of this tonight. Too late in the season for Cuties clementines (only see mandarin variety out there now), but the store did have Darling Clementines so I'm hoping that will works as a close substitute. Time will tell.
Is there any reason to NOT use more than 12 clementines? I don't typically eat oranges, so I'm wondering if there's any harm in using the whole package. I suppose this would increase the orange flavor, but might negatively impact the other spices present by covering them up with too much orange flavor. Maybe I should just stick with 12 to be safe. Comments?
Edit: Further to my previous question, can anyone comment on the overall flavor of the spices? Can you taste the ginger/vanilla/rosemary/cloves? Are any lacking and need to be increased? I suppose I'll have to take some samples of the brew while it's simmering to see what it's tasting like. I can always make adjustments from there, but always enjoy opinions of people that have already made this particular recipe.
Flash, I made a one gallon batch two months ago. I juiced the whole box of cuties using about 3/4 juice and reserving the rest for backsweetening. At 2 weeks in I loved the flavor. Very dominant orange which is what I wanted. At a month and a half in it was much more subtle. I'm hoping it will come back more with age.
I believe the op did 12 oranges for a 5 gallon batch, which imo would be much more of a subtle flavor than dominant. I will update on my future tastings
I was hoping for a bit stronger orange flavor also. I used 15 cuties clementines for a 3 gal batch. I pitched the yeast on 01/20/2013, so I will be transferring to secondary this weekend. I will taste it and post an update. It is looking pretty clear but I'm sure it has a good bit more clearing to do. Also, it seems that a good bit of the orange aroma/flavor comes from steeping the orange peels.
Ok, never mind. I'm not making this one evidently. Went to put everything together last night and found that the Darling Clementines that I just bought on Saturday are already nasty and moldy (on Thursday night). What a sham! So, I'm going to switch gears and try the vanilla mead instead. Just ordered a bunch of vanilla off Amazon that will be here Tuesday. Will come back to this one next year when cuties are back in season. Can't wait!