Capsicumel Mead

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opus345

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I've done a couple test batches that have turned out very good. I've got the ingredients on hand and empty primary/secondary containers, lets see if I can get some constructive (OK, any) guidance on this one. Should I start with 12 lbs and step feed or use all 15 lbs at the start?

Ingredients
15 lbs of Clover honey
5 Anahiem Peppers (Sliced, Seeds and Stems Removed)
5 Jalapeno Peppers (Sliced, Seeds and Stems Removed)
10 Serano Peppers (Sliced, Seeds and Stems Removed)
5 tsp yeast nutrients
2.5 tsp yeast energizer
5 campden tablets (or 1/4 tsp. potassium metabisulphite)
1 packet of Lalvin K1V-1116 yeast.

OG (15 lbs) = 1.115
OG (12 lbs) = 1.092
Target FG (1.020) = ~12% ABV
Primary 12 Days @ 68F

Brew Day
12 lbs of honey
Slice Peppers (Remove Seeds and Stems)
Thourghly mix 12 lbs Honey with 2 gallon of hot water for 5 minutes.
Add 1 tps nutrient, .5 tsp energizer
Add crushed campden tablets.
Add 3 gallons of water, shoot for a starting temp of 68
Add the peppers to the Must and cover with a sanitized cheese cloth for 24 hours.

Stir the Must and punch the cap down every day for the first 10-12 days.

Brew Day + 24 hours
Add 1 tps nutrient, .5 tsp energizer
Make a yeast starter with a cup of water and a cup of the must, around 84 degrees.
Add the yeast and make sure it is working.
Pitch the yeast into the fermenter after 30 minutes and then stir to suspend.

Brew Day + 48 hours
Add 1 tps nutrient, .5 tsp energizer.

Brew Day + 72 hours
Add 1 tps nutrient, .5 tsp energizer.

Brew Day + 96 hours
Add 1 tps nutrient, .5 tsp energizer.

Brew Day + 13 (1st Racking)
After this rack off into secondary and top off with water.
Put on the airlock and let sit.

Brew Day + 43 (2nd Racking)
Add 1 lb of honey to sanitized carboy.
Rack Mead into sanitized carboy

Brew Day + 73 (3rd Racking)
Add 1 lb of honey to sanitized carboy.
Rack Mead into sanitized carboy

Brew Day + 103 (4th Racking)
Add 1 lb of honey to sanitized carboy.
Rack Mead into sanitized carboy

Top off and age 6+ months

Bottle Mead
 

fatbloke

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K1-V1116 will likely take it dry.

I suspect you'll soon discover that with meads, deciding to do things on a set timescale doesn't work. Its not like beer.........

The step feeds at racking points will possibly just keep the ferment going until the yeast die off, hence theres little point in following that technique unless you want a stuck ferment, or one that just continues until the yeast dies at the 18% tolerance of K1V......

You need to think on which your priority is.......12% or a finished product.......

Oh and don't be in a rush to bottle, as that way lies bottle bombs.....
 
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opus345

opus345

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FB,

Thanks for the response.

I have used D47 almost exclusively in the past and it seemed to lend itself to the step feeding. I have a fermentation chamber so I have been able to tightly control the fermentation temps.

I have read enough about K1, that I would like to try it. Instead of step feeding and creeping up on the FG, it may be a better path to let it go dry, clear it, then cold crash and stabilize with Camden and sorbate. Then back sweeten to taste?

And the bottle bomb comment is sage advice.
 

fatbloke

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FB,

Thanks for the response.

I have used D47 almost exclusively in the past and it seemed to lend itself to the step feeding. I have a fermentation chamber so I have been able to tightly control the fermentation temps.

I have read enough about K1, that I would like to try it. Instead of step feeding and creeping up on the FG, it may be a better path to let it go dry, clear it, then cold crash and stabilize with Camden and sorbate. Then back sweeten to taste?

And the bottle bomb comment is sage advice.
One of the reasons I like K1V is that its less hassle with temps because of the wide range and that its a straight foward yeast to use.

I generally either go dry, then stabilise and back sweeten. I usually back sweeten before clearing, because I like to use honey and that way I only clear my brews the once and no problems with possible protein hazes from the honey. I back sweeten to about the 1.010 to 1.015 level its where I like my meads.......
 

Brann_mac_Finnchad

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Recipe looks like a winner--glad you put multiple pepper varieties in there.

Like Fatbloke said, it would certainly be easier to just add all the honey in at once, let it go dry, then backsweeten to taste--or my preferred way, of cold crashing and racking it when it reaches the desired FG.

My question is, why 1116 if you only want to go to 12% abv? Just because you want to try that strain?
 

fatbloke

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Recipe looks like a winner--glad you put multiple pepper varieties in there.

Like Fatbloke said, it would certainly be easier to just add all the honey in at once, let it go dry, then backsweeten to taste--or my preferred way, of cold crashing and racking it when it reaches the desired FG.

My question is, why 1116 if you only want to go to 12% abv? Just because you want to try that strain?
Dunno why he chose it but it does seem to be good producing nice esters and aromatics particularly at the lower portion of its temp tolerance i.e. 15 to 18 C........
 
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opus345

opus345

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The main reason is that I read enough good reports about 1116 that I did indeed want to try it out. I'm not fixated on the 12%. That was what a calculator thought it would end up with the 15 lbs of honey. I'm going to make this today and follow the advice for using all the honey at the start. I will keep the thread updated with the progress.
 

huesmann

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By my calculations, 12 lb of honey plus 5 gal of water is going to give you 6 gal of liquid, at SG 1.071. K1V will probably take that dry down to .996-998, and you'll end up with about 10% ABV.
 
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opus345

opus345

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15 lbs Clover Honey and the peppers.

Brew day + 1. Made a 60 min starter and pitched the K1 tonight. OG was 1.090 with 6.5 gal @ 68F
 

WVMJ

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Brew Day is for Beermaking, Mead day is for meadmaking :) Nothing wrong with 1116 except its going to eat every morsel of honey and if you dont clear it very well and backsweeten it might still be ready to keep eating. Why in the world did you take the seeds out? Were your peppers red ripe or green? I keep wanting to do one of these cap meads, we got about 120 pepper plants out in the garden. I like your combining different kinds of peppers so you get more members of the cap chemical, but maybe a hab thrown in for an instant flash of heat might make it more interesting. WVMJ
 
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opus345

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I debated about the seeds, but thought they would be a hassle somewhere in the process.

I'm thinking that I can always toss in the Hab in secondary after taste testing.

Today is Mead Day + 2 which means SNA and a mix with my new wine whip. :rockin:

Haven't tried pasteurization, but this might be the right thing to do with K1.

Appreciate all the feedback.
 

WVMJ

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Did you post a pic of your chamber here? WVMJ

FB,

Thanks for the response.

I have used D47 almost exclusively in the past and it seemed to lend itself to the step feeding. I have a fermentation chamber so I have been able to tightly control the fermentation temps.

I have read enough about K1, that I would like to try it. Instead of step feeding and creeping up on the FG, it may be a better path to let it go dry, clear it, then cold crash and stabilize with Camden and sorbate. Then back sweeten to taste?

And the bottle bomb comment is sage advice.
 
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opus345

opus345

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Update

Used my new 3 prong wine whip for the first 13 days and performed the SNA according to schedule.

On Mead day + 13 (June 22), the SG was 1.010. Today is Mead day + 20 and the FG is .996. ABV at the moment is 12.34% (SG = 1.090/FG = .996) according to the calculator on Brewer's Friend.

I racked to the secondary container and think I will give it 6-8 months storage before bottling. After tonight's tasting, Everyone said I absolutely need to start another batch. The flavor and heat were spot on. I may think about a 3-4 month racking/tasting to see if it needs any additional flavor or heat.

It did not taste as dry as I was expecting at an FG of .997.

I will post a pic on the next update.

jr
 
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opus345

opus345

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Let's cleanup the reciepe and procedure:

6 Gal Batch

Ingredients
15 lbs of Clover honey
5 Anahiem Peppers (Sliced, Seeds and Stems Removed)
5 Jalapeno Peppers (Sliced, Seeds and Stems Removed)
10 Serano Peppers (Sliced, Seeds and Stems Removed)
5 tsp yeast nutrients
2.5 tsp yeast energizer
5 campden tablets (or 1/4 tsp. potassium metabisulphite)
1 packet of Lalvin K1V-1116 yeast.

Target OG = 1.105
Actual OG = 1.095 (I think I started with 6.5 gallons in the primary)
Target FG 1.000 = ~12.50% ABV
Actual FG = .995 = ~13% ABV
Primary 12 Days @ 68F

Mead Day
15 lbs of honey
Slice Peppers (Remove Seeds and Stems)
Thourghly mix 15 lbs Honey with 2 gallon of hot water for 5 minutes.
Add 1 tps nutrient, .5 tsp energizer
Add crushed campden tablets.
Add water (~ 3 Gallons of water to equal 6 gallon total). Shoot for a starting temp of 68F
Add the peppers to the Must and cover with a sanitized cheese cloth for 24 hours.

Stir and areate the Must every day for the first 12 days.

Mead Day + 24 hours
Add 1 tps nutrient, .5 tsp energizer
Make a yeast starter with a cup of water and a cup of the must, around 84 degrees.
Add the yeast and make sure it is working.
Pitch the yeast into the fermenter after 30 minutes and then stir to suspend.

Mead Day + 48 hours
Add 1 tps nutrient, .5 tsp energizer.

Mead Day + 72 hours
Add 1 tps nutrient, .5 tsp energizer.

Mead Day + 96 hours
Add 1 tps nutrient, .5 tsp energizer.

Mead Day + 13
Rack off into secondary and top off with water.
Put on the airlock.

Bulk age 6-12 months

Backsweeten
Cold Crash
Bottle and Pasteurize Mead

Here is a picture of it in Secondary

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I very much appreciate all the feedback.
 

WVMJ

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Dude, you must think Taco Bell is HOT :) I thought you were putting in pounds of peppers, not individual ones! WVMJ
 
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opus345

opus345

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Dude, you must think Taco Bell is HOT :) I thought you were putting in pounds of peppers, not individual ones! WVMJ
To me, most food is just a vehicle to get more Sambal Oelek into me. :drunk:

So I do like hot, but this first big batch was to 1) Get the pepper flavor and honey to mix and 2) to add some heat, but still leave it drinkable. I can always add a hab during secondary or even think about adding a pepper to some of the bottles. The options get limited if I get it too hot at the start.

This tasted so good after Primary, that I'm already planning another batch after the Carmel Apple finishes Primary. I need more primary fermentation buckets.

And Taco Bell is just plain nasty.
 

huesmann

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FWIW, I used 2 habaneros per gallon (just sliced in half) for my current melocapiscumel, and it's pretty darn spicy (quality control sampling).
 

WVMJ

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I am planning one this year also if our plants produce good, got a chile roaster and we hope to roast a bunch of mexican chiles, use them with the charred skins on, toss in some dragons and a few Carib reds to add some heat but not too much, like you we want the real pepper taste not just heat. Adding a pepper to the bottle with a couple of pin pricks in it to let the alcohol in would be interesting and look pretty cool. WVMJ
 

huesmann

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I think that if you use too many different pepper varieties you'll muddy the pepper flavors. I think you should stick to one pepper, or at most two--if the pepper you want most flavor from is not too hot, add something that is hot but not flavorful. Personally, my habanero flavor came out pretty well, even with additional citrus flavoring.
 
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opus345

opus345

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I think that if you use too many different pepper varieties you'll muddy the pepper flavors. I think you should stick to one pepper, or at most two--if the pepper you want most flavor from is not too hot, add something that is hot but not flavorful. Personally, my habanero flavor came out pretty well, even with additional citrus flavoring.
Did you add the citrus flavoring?
 

huesmann

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Yes, I used zest peels from some citrus fruits.

I'm still able to taste the "habanero" flavor, not just the "ooh that's spicy" pepper flavor.
 

WVMJ

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I was thinking about having a base flavor from like ripe new mex chiles and highlighting it with several different kinds of hot ones, we have some lemon habs that are actually very tastey and citrusy, then mixing in some differernt pepppers with different kinds of capsaicin like some red ripe Thia Dragons and some Caribean Reds. Not face melting, but hot enough that people who like heat would appreciate it while those that think Taco Bell is hot would shy away and not waste it. All roasted and some of the skin left in there for added taste. I keep wanting to toss some tomatoes and onions in there but this would be a capsicumel and NOT a Salsomelomel. A cilantro finish??? WVMJ

I think that if you use too many different pepper varieties you'll muddy the pepper flavors. I think you should stick to one pepper, or at most two--if the pepper you want most flavor from is not too hot, add something that is hot but not flavorful. Personally, my habanero flavor came out pretty well, even with additional citrus flavoring.
 
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opus345

opus345

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huesmann,

I like the idea of the zest peels and that may turn into a 1 Gal test batch.

WVMJ,

I may try a couple cilantro leaves in one or two of the capsicumel bottles.
 

huesmann

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Just be careful. For some people, cilantro produces an unpleasant soapy flavor on their palate. That could reduce some peoples' enjoyment of your mead.
 

WVMJ

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We had that the first time we tried it, couldnt believe people ate this stuff, tried it again and it was great, now we cant plant enough of it! I keep wanting to make a mojito with it instead of mint and a hot pepper. WVMJ

Just be careful. For some people, cilantro produces an unpleasant soapy flavor on their palate. That could reduce some peoples' enjoyment of your mead.
 
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opus345

opus345

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Bottled on Jan 14.

Have already drank three bottles, I will need to hide some on the dark side of the rack. Sounds like a Pink Floyd song.

Great aromatics. Not hot, not dry, but you get a very nice, should I say it, balance of the honey and the ,peppers.

Best effort to date, and I'm quite pleased with myself. Would I be worried about serving this to anyone? No. Do we like it? Absolutely. I think this is what "it" is all about. Striving to make the next batch better than the previous one.

Thanks for all the feedback along the way on this one.
 

paindragon1

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@opus345 Do you recall if your OP recipe was your finally ingredient list or not? Would you do anything different with it if you were to remake it today?
 
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