Help with my first mead- Blackberry Melomel - Home Brew Forums
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Old 03-26-2013, 04:36 AM   #1
Shmrak12
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Oct 2012
Fort Collins, CO
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I want to make a Blackberry Melomel for my first mead this week and I have a couple questions.

Should I put the fruit in during primary or secondary fermentation?

Any suggestions on staggered yeast additions? (OG: 1.090)

What are people's thoughts on adding sulfites vs pasteurization?


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Old 03-26-2013, 07:43 AM   #2
Brann_mac_Finnchad
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Apr 2012
, AK
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If you add fruit in secondary, you'll get more of a "fresh" fruit flavour. Primary some of the flavour will ferment out, and change (I have a mixed berry--which does contain blackberries--melomel almost ready for bottling. I got a flavour almost like red wine from the berries, although that may be due to the yeast choice as well). Personally, I say do both.

I do not use sulfites, and only occasionally pasturize (which could change the flavour slightly). Have you considered letting time do it's thing, with repeated cold crashings and rackings?

What yeast are you planning on using?


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Old 03-26-2013, 03:53 PM   #3
Shmrak12
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Oct 2012
Fort Collins, CO
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At first I was going to use wyeast 4632. But after reading peoples reviews I think I will go with 10 g of Lalvin D47.

I like the idea of adding fruit during both fermentations. How long do you primary before racking over? And how long do you cold crash? Conditioning time? And finally how many times do you transfer
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Old 03-27-2013, 01:25 AM   #4
Brann_mac_Finnchad
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, AK
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Not familiar with the wyeast strains--d47 could work (usual caveats of temperature). Personally I would (and did) use a strain used mainly for red wines.

I usually wait until it approaches the FG, then rack off the gross lees. Repeat in secondary. Until clear and you decide it's ready to bottle.
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Old 03-27-2013, 05:31 AM   #5
tuner240
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Jan 2013
DeLand, Florida
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Cold crashing means taking the mead after fermenting, or during if you want to attempt to slow down or stop the yeasties work, by putting the mead in the fridge for about a week or so. This helps to force the yeast into hibernation and can help with clearing the mead as well. You will notice the yeast drop to the bottom of your vessel. Rack off of this when you notice that the accumulation of lees has stopped. Multiple rackings may be needed over time, and brann pretty much summed it up: first racking after fermentation is complete, then rack as necessary every couple of months to get your mead off of the trash. Then again, some rack once and leave it alone until they bottle. It's all about preference.

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Old 04-01-2013, 07:45 PM   #6
Shmrak12
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Oct 2012
Fort Collins, CO
Posts: 31


Quote:
Originally Posted by Brann_mac_Finnchad
Not familiar with the wyeast strains--d47 could work (usual caveats of temperature). Personally I would (and did) use a strain used mainly for red wines.

I usually wait until it approaches the FG, then rack off the gross lees. Repeat in secondary. Until clear and you decide it's ready to bottle.
I ended up going with 10g of Red star Montrachet yeast. I aerated well, supplied nutrients and then pitched. The lag was maybe 24 hrs. But it has been rolling strong for the past few days.
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:28 AM   #7
WVMJ
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Dec 2012
Karnage, WV
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How much fruit do you have? If you wanted to make a blackberry flavored mead adding the fruit to just the secondary is best, if you to make a blackberry mead you could ferment most of the fruit in the primary and then to boost the flavor you can add a few pounds to your secondary, but I would crush these and add just the juice as the seeds can add some bitterness if left in to long. Did you mean staggered yeast nutrient additions? You could add half at start and half at 1.060 or so. What kind of honey did you end up using? WVMJ


Quote:
Originally Posted by Shmrak12 View Post
I want to make a Blackberry Melomel for my first mead this week and I have a couple questions.

Should I put the fruit in during primary or secondary fermentation?

Any suggestions on staggered yeast additions? (OG: 1.090)

What are people's thoughts on adding sulfites vs pasteurization?
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Old 04-03-2013, 04:15 AM   #8
Shmrak12
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Oct 2012
Fort Collins, CO
Posts: 31


So here is what I went with:

13# Wildflower Honey (Cheapest at my LHBS)
3# Raspberries (Primary)
3# Blackberries (Primary)
6oz Fresh Lemon juice
10g Redstar Montratchet yeast
3# Raspberries (Secondary)
3# Blackberries (Secondary)
Staggered DAP and Superfood additions

It is fermenting like a beast at the moment and smells amazing. I never considered that the seeds may add bitterness, I think I will strain the berries before adding into secondary.


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