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Old 11-10-2008, 02:02 PM   #1
Zymurgrafi
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Default Heather Braggot. Recipe good. Execution...

No idea. You tell me how I am doing? What should I do now?

I have been dabbling with meads for the last year. All one gallon batches. Well, this summer when the heather was blossoming and I picked more heather than I needed for my heather ale, I decided to try a braggot.

It tasted wicked good the first time I racked it. Ambrosia! Wonderful aroma and flavor of the honey and heather. Very floral. The second racking, not so good anymore. Not nearly as wonderful. Did I let it go too long? I figured a braggot needed age like mead. I have not even bottled it yet.

Anyway here is the low down. I used extract for simplicities sake but will use Marris Otter malt in the future.

Recipe:

1 Gallon batch
Expected 1.067 OG (Actual was 1.078)
Expected FG 1.000 (last time I checked it was 1.017)

12 oz. extra light dry malt extract
1 Lb. 2 oz. Clover honey
.20 oz. chocolate malt
1.60 oz. Crystal 60

11 g Dry Heather tips
6 g Fresh Heather tips

1 g Irish moss
1 g yeast nutrient

Boil extract and dry heather for 45 minutes (small batch, shorter boil) and add the fresh heather in the final 10 minutes. Honey added at flameout.

SafAle US-05 1 pack

Brewed on August 6, 2008. Fermented at 68F for about a month (note taking was not very good) though temp fluctuations could have occurred... I racked it once after about a month I believe. Again, it was incredible. I racked it again a couple of weeks ago as there was still a considerable yeast deposit.

Looking over my notes now, or lack there of, I realize I was a bit to casual, so that right there may well be my answer. Where should I go with it? I did not take a reading at last racking because, well, I have less then a gallon now... Also, there is still occasional airlock activity (I know not an accurate sign) It is about at about 64F Right now though it has been lower say, 60F.

Bottle it up? Do I need to add yeast? I generally keg but since this is so small I cannot. If I were kegging a bigger brew I would just force carb, so I do not know how to bottle condition a high gravity brew.

Maybe just leave it still?

I am kind of doubtful it will taste better with age as it was SO good early on and then less so after time.

Sorry about the long winded post. Thanks for reading this far. Any thoughts?


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Old 11-10-2008, 02:54 PM   #2
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FWIW...I kegged my Braggot, then plan to use the BMBF to bottle it....which reminds me; I need to get it into the keezer.

I think that your likely experiencing the mid rift crisis. Given enough time, almost anything that tasted good to start with will come back.

I don't see anything wrong with your recipe, and actually, the US-05 should produce a pretty clean product. I would just hang loose, and when the urge to bottle strikes ya, add some yeast, or keg.


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Old 11-10-2008, 02:58 PM   #3
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Well, to pinpoint where an error might have occured, you're going to have to explain this "off" flavor a little better. Is it like cardboard? Sherry? Does it have a butterscotch or butter flavor?

My assumption is that during all these rackings, air was introduced to the beer. If you started with a one gallon batch, I'd say you're probably down to a 2/3 or a half. The airspace in the jug may have introduced o2, or if splashing or bubbles were in the racking line while transferring. My advice is if it tastes ok now, drink it.
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Old 11-10-2008, 03:26 PM   #4
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No off flavors really, just does not taste as amazing as it did.

How much yeast to add? I can figure out the priming sugar for a small batch but I do not want to use to much yeast. As I said, there are still occasional bubbles coming through the airlock. I have not taken a reading lately so it may not even be fully fermented. Perhaps yeast is still kicking then?
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