Originally Posted by aclimbatize
I just found a post about polish mead recently and was wondering if anybody has made any that is finnished and turned out well? I have kind of a sweet tooth and would love to make some sweeter desert meads, and these polish meads sounded like exactly what I'm looking for.
Any recipes? Advice? I'm just concerned about the amount of honey in the heavier meads stalling fermentation do to yeast being stressed out with the amount of sugar. Do they stagger honey additions? All at once? A particular strain of yeast more able to cope with these demands? Any help is appreciated!!
I've got a couple running at the moment, the other one is a third honey two thirds water by volume (classification Trojniak) and the other is half honey half water by volume (classification Dwojniak). I did a few stupid mistakes from which I've leardned my lessons.
My plan for the next attempt would be:
- Start primary fermentation with buckets so aeration and nutrition additions is easier.
- Start with one quarter honey, three quarters water (by volume)
- Use a champagne yeast and more of it than typically recommended for the amount.
- Rehydrate yeast properly
- Use a proper nutrient addition plan, there is a good one in the pinned faqs on this forum.
- Aerate really well for the first few days, several times a day.
- When this fermentation is slowing down, (SG around 1.020-1.010), rack into a suitable glass carboy.
- No need to be too careful with the lees as we don't want to lose any viable yeast. All liquid racked, only the more 'solid' part of lees left out.
- Add more honey in a staggered schedule. Use mathematics to calculate what should happen to the SG as the readings will not be good immediately after adding (honey won't dissolve evenly immediately).
- After additions, roll the carboy around a bit to help dissolving. Take SG the next day.
The staggered schedule would need to be improvised based on how the yeast handles the new sugars. Also some extra nutrients and especially DAP should do good.
As I haven't yet finished any of these really sweet meads, I can't tell how this goes but it is at the very least a massively better plan than with my initial attempt, which was mixing in all the honey at the start and 'rehydrating' the yeast in a glass of the must before pitching, without much aeration.
However I've found reports where a must with OG 1.200+ has fermented and mellowed within about 2 years, so it should be possible without the staggered honey additions too.