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Dangers of bulk aging *FACEPALM*

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foolsgold

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I want to cry :(
So my parents were out over the holidays in December.
Decided to make up a batch of Raspberry mead that I have been putting off making for a while. I couldn't find my bungs and air locks (moved in October) so I took one off of my 5+ gallons of Cherry that I started back 11/14. It was a GREAT cherry mead... tasted like a spiked cherry pie tbh.
So when I took the bung/airlock I covered the top of the carboy w/ 3 layers of freezer bag and kept it tight with a hair band till I could get to the brew store and get another bug.

Well in the meantime it seems a hole got punched in the plastic :smack:
IDK if it was my M-i-L or my boy or .... aliens but the result is the same... 5 gallons of mead have oxidized and now taste soooo bad. I know the answer but I can't help but ask before I dump it down the toilet ... there isn't any way to salvage this is there? :( *SIGH*
I got 3 bottles of mead out of the carboy over the past year and 2 of those went to family. I honestly want to cry.
 

BBBF

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It's not really saving it, but you can try warming it up with mulled spices or making sangria out of it.
 

bosster01

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What recipe did you use? I want to make some mead, and I'll do your recipe in honor of this horrendous event.

I wonder if it got a hole from pressure building up and popping?
 
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foolsgold

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Nah it was a poke and pull... I'm going to guess my boy got interested in it... *sigh* 5 year olds lol. It wasn't blown out just poked and pulled... although it did look smaller then his finger so idk.

Here is the recipe I did...

Tart Cherry Melomel
12# Turkish Honey (found at trader joe's) + 3# added at 2 weeks
8qts Tart Cherry Juice (also found at trader joe's)
Water to 5 gallons
Yeast: RC212
Racked at 4 weeks. Added 5# of cherries.
3 months cold crashed and racked.

It was hot but oh so good!
RIP
I WILL be making this again. The color was awesome and it was on the semi dry/dry side. I don't care for the really sweet stuff. I'll see if I can post a picture.
 
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foolsgold

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Red is the cherry and the yellow/gold is Apple pie.

IMAG1393.jpg


IMAG1391.jpg
 

slym2none

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Why on earth would a person cook with something that's not fit to drink?
I use PBR to pre-boil brats in. Michelob in my BBQ sauce. I used to use a 12-pack of cheap light beer (some Australian-sounding name, from the 1990s) while making BBQ, mostly for the water-bath.

;)

I will admit - I have no idea what I'd use a mead in altogether. But I'm sure there's something.
 

195877

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Hi, sorry to hear...but Medsen Fey a mentor from got mead said this:
(check out the thread)


If a batch does get oxidized, fining with casein or powdered milk may help remove the oxidized character if it is not too severe. Charcoal fining is another option. In meadmaking, these options are almost never needed.

Copied from Gotmead.com - Read More at:http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php/15254-oxidation-and-mead
 

k-moe

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I use PBR to pre-boil brats in. Michelob in my BBQ sauce.
Using cheep beer is one thing; using skunky beer is something else. The OP is describing what seems to be mead that is darned close to being skunky.
 

Brew_Dude41

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I cook with red wine that has gone bad from being open to long-I guess it is oxidized-all the time. I get great results from it, but there is no way i would drink it straight.
A bitter cherry mead might work great in a BBQ sauce or glaze. Mix it up with some brown sugar, Worcestershire sauce, garlic powder, ketchup, and maybe a bit of Tabasco and or crushed chipotle flakes and you might have a winner. Or, add about a 1/4 cup to your pork ribs wrapped in foil(and dry rubbed of course) and let those bad boys cook low and slow on the 'que for a few hours....
Better yet, send me a bomber or two of the 'spoiled' mead and i will cook a few things up with it and tell you how they come out. :D
 

Arpolis

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I had a bad lemon cherry mead that had a similar issue. But I think I let it sit on 71b for too long was my issue. The mead was undrinkable. So I halved it with water and pitch a jar of live Apple cider vinegar and after a few weeks it all turned into this beautiful cherry vinegar. Had lots of work friends raving at how good this vinegar was on salads and just putting a little on bread.
 
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foolsgold

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lol snicklefritz yah that's not legal here :p

Brew Dude your just a little bit away from me. I'm down in Cincy.

I am going to try some charcoal before deciding if I'm going to pitch it or not. Just can't stand the thought of dumping it w/ out making an effort to save it lol.
 

IslandLizard

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I'm so sorry for your loss, it can be devastating to see your precious mead go to waste!
I'd say a sharp pencil or pen was used to poke that hole. Freezer bags are pretty tough.

If the headspace was very small, is it possible the oxidation is contained to the upper layer and doesn't go through the whole batch all the way to the bottom?
 

195877

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foolsgold:I am going to try some charcoal before deciding if I'm going to pitch it or not. Just can't stand the thought of dumping it w/ out making an effort to save it lol.[/QUOTE said:
Glad to hear your attempting to save it, please post your results!
 
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foolsgold

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I'm gonna siphon off a bottle and see how the charcoal works on that before trying the whole carboy.
Dumb question (or maybe just too lazy to google lol) but how would you go about using the charcoal as a fining agent? Just add it and let it set or stir it?
 

195877

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As a fining agent you would probably pass the mead though an activated charcoal filter, but you aren't looking to fine/clear your mead you want to remove the odors etc. (so I'm thinking like you, you would add it and let it sit for some period of time)

I have no first hand knowledge or experience, but my understanding is that charcoal is neither positively or negatively charged, so does not attract particles (like bentonite or other fining agents) but (activated) charcoal absorbs them. Like charcoal air and water filters.

Activated Charcoal (filters) are available at most pet/fish stores (used in fish tanks)

As for sanitation of the charcoal???

As for amount to use???
you may have to experiment with your small samples.

However, If overused, because of it's absorbing capacity, Carbon (activated charcoal) can strip wine/mead of color, flavor and character, and will actually create an off-flavor of its own.

Perhaps a more experienced/knowledgeable mazer or vintner could chime in here............

Best of Luck!
 

On-target

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You said that you took 3 bottles out of the carboy previously? That would have left a lot (too much) of headspace. Even with a real airlock you would have oxidation issues.
In bulk aging you need to keep the level of the mead up to the neck of the carboy.
Good luck.
 
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