Beginner melomel/pyment recipe needed

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noisy123

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I am looking for a recipe that uses 15 or so pounds of clover honey to produce a slightly-sweet sparkling melomel. I have not tried much mead but I am guessing from beermaking that meads with FG's around 1.015-1.02 could still be carbonated and would have a sweet taste, is that right?

I would prefer the fruit be added in the form of Oregon puree's or Alexander's concentrates. Ideally, it would just be a modified version of
Making a basic mead referred to in the sticky. I like the incorporation of newer techniques like no boils etc...

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

hightest

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You could make the basic mead, and rack onto the fruit (or puree) once the ABV get to 10%. This would be the simplest method; although there are varied viewpoints on whether is is "better" to use fruit in the primary, secondary, or both...
 
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noisy123

noisy123

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hightest, thanks for your reply and your FAQ.

Should I substitute a different yeast to produce a less dry version?

Also, one or two cans of oregon puree?
 

hightest

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hightest, thanks for your reply and your FAQ. Should I substitute a different yeast to produce a less dry version? Also, one or two cans of oregon puree?
You're welcome...

Not necessary to change yeast as you'll want the base mead to be dry. Here's why...

Your recipe (15lb honey & water to make 5 gal) should yield an OG ~1.106. Ferment that to dryness (SG <= 1.000). Now rack the base mead onto the fruit concentrate. As I recall Alexander's Conc. comes in 48 oz cans and the juice is about 66°B (SG ~ 1.329) If you use one 48oz can (6 cups) with a base mead at 1.000, your SG will increase to 1.022 and your overall ABV will drop to ~13%. Let that mixture set 3-4 weeks before another racking.

I've not used the purees in quite some time so I have no data on their SG, but the end result will be similar - a sweeter mead... ;)
 
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noisy123

noisy123

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I looked for the following at my local shop:
Yeast Nutrient - Red Star's SuperFood (SF), or Lallemand's Fermaid-K
Yeast Energizer - Diammonium phosphate (DAP)
Rehydration nutrient: Go-Ferm (only needed if using dry yeast)

I could not find these brand names but the salesman sold me Nutrient and Energizer (they did not have the GoFerm). He did not know what the Nutrient and Energizer were made from. Should I use them? Is there a lot of variation in these substances?

The yeast nutrient is composed of 2-3 mm diameter white pebbles and the energizers is an off-white powder with the consistency of sifted flour.

The nutrient looks like this:
 

hightest

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I looked for the following at my local shop:
Yeast Nutrient - Red Star's SuperFood (SF), or Lallemand's Fermaid-K
Yeast Energizer - Diammonium phosphate (DAP)
Rehydration nutrient: Go-Ferm (only needed if using dry yeast)

I could not find these brand names but the salesman sold me Nutrient and Energizer (they did not have the GoFerm). He did not know what the Nutrient and Energizer were made from. Should I use them? Is there a lot of variation in these substances?
IMO, honey is too costly to take a chance with unknown products.

The primary reason why I only use (and advocate the use of) Fermaid-K, Superfood, DAP, and Go-Ferm is the fact that I know what (and what is not) in them. Secondly, their manufacturers clearly state that the nutrients do not contain urea. Lastly, the manufacturers describe the amount of YAN their nutrients provide per unit weight so that one may properly manage fermentation.

As you asked me my opinion, I'll offer it... I would suggest that you return these mystery compounds for a refund and order the proven products online (I use Austin Homebrew in TX).

While I do not know what these products contain, I will say that neither Fermaid-K, Superfood, or Go-Ferm are pure white in appearance. These products are tan in color.
 

hightest

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If what I just posted did not convince you, consider this taken directly from TheBrewShack's website:
We have only been making beer and wine the last few years and admit our experience is limited. This is a new business so our products are limited.
That was the name on the bottle image you posted.
 

CBBaron

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I am looking for a recipe that uses 15 or so pounds of clover honey to produce a slightly-sweet sparkling melomel. I have not tried much mead but I am guessing from beermaking that meads with FG's around 1.015-1.02 could still be carbonated and would have a sweet taste, is that right?

I would prefer the fruit be added in the form of Oregon puree's or Alexander's concentrates. Ideally, it would just be a modified version of
Making a basic mead referred to in the sticky. I like the incorporation of newer techniques like no boils etc...

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
First read the stickies at the top of the page about yeast nutrients.
For best results use GoFerm to rehydrate the yeast, Fermaid-K and DAP as yeast nutrient in the must. The sticky describes when, and how much of these to add.

Next unless you have a keg it is not easy to get a sweet sparkling mead. Honey and fruit sugars are completely fermentable by the yeast unlike malt sugars. This means either the sugars are completely consumed and you have a dry beverage or the yeast is not active.

You can make a sparkling mead by fermenting the mead dry then bottling with some priming sugar or honey like you would beer. However the mead will be dry.

You can make a sweet mead two ways. One is to make a must such that the yeast will exceed its alcohol tolerance before consuming all the sugar. Or you can ferment a mead dry then stabilize using Sorbate and sulfite before adding additional sugars. The stabilization prevents the yeast from restarting fermentation. Both methods result in still mead.

Using Vinters Harvest wine bases, Oregon fruit puree or Alexander's grape concentrates are all easy ways to make fruit or grape based meads. The fruits can be added with the honey in the primary ferment, or added in the secondary after the primary ferment has slowed, or even both.

One possible sweet pymet would be to take a can of Alexander's white grape concentrate, about 13# of honey and D-47 yeast. This should make a nice sweet pymet with subtle wine like flavors.
Another option would be to use 2 cans and 10# of honey.
Less honey will result in a dryer mead while more will be sweeter. 1 can with 15# should result in a sweet desert mead.

In all cases read the stickies by hightest first. There is alot of really good information.

Craig
 

CBBaron

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The yeast nutrient pictured looks like the LD Carson Yeast Nutrient which contains urea. I have used it in low amounts but several articles have said it is a bad way to get nitrogen for the ferment.
I am guessing the Energizer is also from LD Carson and is somewhat like Fermaid-K in contents. This is a better choice to use for nutrients in a mead if you cannot get Fermaid or Superfood. Many HBSes seem to repackage or relabel LD Carson supplies so I am guessing that is what you have. I eventually decided to place an order for the real stuff including GoFerm from an online supplier.

Craig
 

hightest

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In the past I have directly asked LD Carlson for information about their nutrient products, and received no response whatsoever. I did not ask for proprietary information. I asked two questions: (1) Does your product contain urea (in any form), and (2) the amount (ppm) of YAN provided per unit weight of their product added.

As they hvae chosen to ignore (not respond) to my questions, I can only deduce that they have something to hide. As such, I strongly suggest brewers stay away from these mystery products. Stick with the proven winners: Fermaid-K, Go-Ferm, & Superfood.

Although you may not find them in your LHBS, they are available online (Austin HB is my personal choice even though I'm in NJ). However, I would let your LHBS know why you elect not to purchase the Carlson brand.
 
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noisy123

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You could make the basic mead, and rack onto the fruit (or puree) once the ABV get to 10%. This would be the simplest method; although there are varied viewpoints on whether is is "better" to use fruit in the primary, secondary, or both...
Hi all. I followed this advice. I kept it on the raspberries for 10 days and then racked. Then I let it pretty well finish fermenting. The gravity right now is: 1.000

Whoo-hoo. No stuck fermentations. I am attributing this to the staggered additions.

So my question is:
Is this guy done? If so, can I reduce the temperature and age at this point?
My cellar temp is in the low 60's. Is that all right?
 

hightest

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I don't recall if you actually measured the OG, but I did estimate it at ~1.106. Now that your mead is racked to a secondary (@SG=1.000), just let it rest for at least 4 weeks, you may be suprprised at what precipitates out... ;)

Typically, I let my meads rest between 1-6 months before deciding further actions...

The ambient 60°F room temperature is not a concern.
 
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noisy123

noisy123

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I don't recall if you actually measured the OG, but I did estimate it at ~1.106. Now that your mead is racked to a secondary (@SG=1.000), just let it rest for at least 4 weeks, you may be suprprised at what precipitates out... ;)

Typically, I let my meads rest between 1-6 months before deciding further actions...

The ambient 60°F room temperature is not a concern.
OG was 1.105. ABV 13.9% !!

Will I be able to carbonate this stuff or is all the yeast dead?
 

CBBaron

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OG was 1.105. ABV 13.9% !!

Will I be able to carbonate this stuff or is all the yeast dead?
Personally i don't like carbonated mead.

However, what yeast did you use? You may be able to get it to carbonate or they may just be pooped. If you used something like D-47 which has a 14% tolerance it will be a hit or miss proposition. I'd plan for still in that case. If you used something like EC1118 with an 18+% tolerance then it should carbonate given enough time and good conditions.

Craig
 
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noisy123

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I used D-47. Could I add champagne yeast or something with high alcohol tolerance before bottling? If the FG is 1.000 it should mean no bottle-bombs even with champagne yeast right?
 
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