Evidence for TOSNA?

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Pendragon524

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I started using the tailored organic staggered nutrient addition (TOSNA) protocol in my mead-making. I have yet to run any one-to-one tests between TOSNA and non-TOSNA brews, but I assume the former is significantly better than a one-time addition of Fermaid-O, and even better than a one-time addition of DAP. Most homebrewers writing online are unified that staggered nutrient additions, and Fermaid O + GoFERM in particular, are superior yeast nutrient regimens than other approaches. Now, they are almost certainly correct. The theoretical arguments I have read about reducing off-flavors and keeping fermentation temperatures down seem plausible, and I do not imagine that so many serious mead-makers are completely wrong. However, there is very little (if any) published research about yeast nutrition to support these claims, so far as I can tell. Where is the evidence for TOSNA's detailed protocols? Where are the publications that support the many claims made about it?

Again, I'm not asking these questions to cast doubt on TOSNA; rather, it is just odd to me that we seem to be at the mercy of anecdotal evidence for proper yeast nutrition. Am I right in that conclusion?
 

Dan O

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I started using the tailored organic staggered nutrient addition (TOSNA) protocol in my mead-making. I have yet to run any one-to-one tests between TOSNA and non-TOSNA brews, but I assume the former is significantly better than a one-time addition of Fermaid-O, and even better than a one-time addition of DAP. Most homebrewers writing online are unified that staggered nutrient additions, and Fermaid O + GoFERM in particular, are superior yeast nutrient regimens than other approaches. Now, they are almost certainly correct. The theoretical arguments I have read about reducing off-flavors and keeping fermentation temperatures down seem plausible, and I do not imagine that so many serious mead-makers are completely wrong. However, there is very little (if any) published research about yeast nutrition to support these claims, so far as I can tell. Where is the evidence for TOSNA's detailed protocols? Where are the publications that support the many claims made about it?

Again, I'm not asking these questions to cast doubt on TOSNA; rather, it is just odd to me that we seem to be at the mercy of anecdotal evidence for proper yeast nutrition. Am I right in that conclusion?
From my own experiences, (my first meads were made with bread yeast & no additions of any kind, nutritional or otherwise) I saw the differences immediately with TONSA vs no additional feedings. For me, it's a no brainer. I don't need to see what someone wrote about what they researched , @ least not if the results are right in front of me ...in my glass🍷🥂😉😋 I suppose, seeing how much success people have had & written about, for me, is all I need to be convinced it works & is a good thing. Besides, and I hope to be corrected if I'm wrong, about this, but, I think yeast manufacturers have nutritional requirement documents on their websites that can be referenced on request.
 

Ty520

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I agree with Dan that It is readily apparent that nutrient supplementation works. my first few runs were without nutrients, and they took upwards of 7 weeks to finish fermentation whereas my supplemented meads finished in 2-3 weeks.

One thing i have noticed, however, is that when i have done a taste comparison between my meads sans nutrients or supplemented with natural ingredients like raisins, versus fermaid-supplemented meads, i can detect the taste of nitrogen on the palette - i've also been able to detect it on the palette in several commercially produced meads - typically trads where there aren't other flavors to mask it.

I would need to do more investigation, but part of me feels that a successful mead without fermaid does inevitably taste better
 

dmtaylor

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I don't baby my meads. I add one dose of old-school urea + DAP on day 1, then leave it the hell alone for several months. Always get excellent results so I see no need to do any more research. Ya'll can have a blast discussing theories and research and experiences, and talking about me after I leave like I'm a royal idiot. I couldn't care less. Cheers.
 

Dan O

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I suppose that depends on what you think is labor intensive. For me, I'm like a kid in science class, I can't wait to make another one. I like all the steps. It keeps me on my toes if I want my meads to be finished faster. Everybody has their own style & nobody's knocking it. I'm just sharing what I've learned in the hopes that someday I'll be able to help other newbies as I have been educated through more experienced mazers than myself.
Happy meading 😎
 
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Pendragon524

Pendragon524

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From my own experiences, (my first meads were made with bread yeast & no additions of any kind, nutritional or otherwise) I saw the differences immediately with TONSA vs no additional feedings. For me, it's a no brainer. I don't need to see what someone wrote about what they researched , @ least not if the results are right in front of me ...in my glass🍷🥂😉😋 I suppose, seeing how much success people have had & written about, for me, is all I need to be convinced it works & is a good thing. Besides, and I hope to be corrected if I'm wrong, about this, but, I think yeast manufacturers have nutritional requirement documents on their websites that can be referenced on request.
I'm totally on the same page with you. Anecdotal evidence is not accidental evidence, and it is certainly sufficient for me on a personal level to make decisions about how to made mead. However, it doesn't rise to the standard of science. I find it concerning that there seems to be a lack of professional investigation into nutritional requirements for yeast. Moreover, we must always remember that correlation isn't causation. Just because I used TOSNA and made an awesome mead doesn't mean that every specification offered by TOSNA was responsible for the superior product. Maybe it's just Fermaid-O added in a staggered fashion. Maybe it's a combo of Fermaid-O and Go-FERM, rather than the specific measurements that TOSNA recommends. Maybe it is the whole protocol in all its glory. But how can we know? I want more evidence for all the little details that TOSNA recommends. That is what I cannot seem to find.
 
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Pendragon524

Pendragon524

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I suppose that depends on what you think is labor intensive. For me, I'm like a kid in science class, I can't wait to make another one. I like all the steps. It keeps me on my toes if I want my meads to be finished faster. Everybody has their own style & nobody's knocking it. I'm just sharing what I've learned in the hopes that someday I'll be able to help other newbies as I have been educated through more experienced mazers than myself.
Happy meading 😎
I agree; I love the detail work that goes into making mead and wine. For me, it makes it more fun, not less.
 

Dan O

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I agree; I love the detail work that goes into making mead and wine. For me, it makes it more fun, not less.
Correct. For me it's a fun hobby, that I get to enjoy not only the creation of, but, I get to enjoy it on the other end of the line, too. I see the point you're making about wanting more data available. I suppose I would be more concerned about it if I was making failures instead of drinkable product, but, I'm happy with what I'm able to produce, yet, I always strive for one better recipe. Cheers🍷🥂
 

Ty520

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I'm totally on the same page with you. Anecdotal evidence is not accidental evidence, and it is certainly sufficient for me on a personal level to make decisions about how to made mead. However, it doesn't rise to the standard of science. I find it concerning that there seems to be a lack of professional investigation into nutritional requirements for yeast. Moreover, we must always remember that correlation isn't causation. Just because I used TOSNA and made an awesome mead doesn't mean that every specification offered by TOSNA was responsible for the superior product. Maybe it's just Fermaid-O added in a staggered fashion. Maybe it's a combo of Fermaid-O and Go-FERM, rather than the specific measurements that TOSNA recommends. Maybe it is the whole protocol in all its glory. But how can we know? I want more evidence for all the little details that TOSNA recommends. That is what I cannot seem to find.
I just saw that melovino relaunched their website and podcast, and introduced a revised TOSNA calculator that has lowered the nutrient addition quantities - maybe see if you can get in touch or submit it as a question for the podcast to see if he would go into more depth on how he devised tosna?
 

Redeemer

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From personal experience I can see that my mead, and the one wine I made, before using nutrients were trash. Even at 6 months in it tasted like I was drinking liquefied rubber bands and fire. Then I read about SNA, BOMM, and TOSNA. As the same time my methods improved as well so I am sure that helps but now I am making meads that I can drink in a month. Most sit in carboy secondary for 2 months due to lack of bottles, but they are delicious. To my pallet, better than most commercial meads. For my money, that's worth the price of admission.
That said, there are many many scientific articles and research papers available for free on the interwebs (Too lazy to Google them for you) that discuss the role of nutrients and timing in wine making. Mead is more like wine than beer in terms of how it is traditionally fermented, and available nutrients. I feel like this alone warrants the elevation in status from "anecdotal" to at least "tribal knowledge" in terms of the evidence.
 
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