First mead, advice on fruit juice

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mdindy

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So I have my first mead in the secondary now, 2 gallon orange blossom in 2 separate gallon jugs which I plan on aging 4-6 months or so. I was thinking of doing a fruit mead with some fruit juice but had some noob questions.
1. any specific kind of flavor anyone would recommend?
2. how much should I add per gallon?
3. will this restart fermentation? and if so how long should I wait till I bottle?

any advice will be appreciated so far everything has gone smoothly so I would like to do it the right way.
 

fsr_racer

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I did a pomegranate that turned out pretty good, a lot of people like adding apple cider, also pretty good. Yes, the additional sugar in the juice will restart the yeast, just make sure the juice doesn't have any preservatives, as they will kill the yeast. As for how much? Experiment and have fun.
 

MarshmallowBlue

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If you are starting from the beginning, and using juice from the store, I'd replace all the water with your juice. I did a blackberry mead using Trader Joe's Blackberry Crush juice instead of water and it came out great.

If you are adding later, just stabilize the batch with camden tabs and potassium sorbate and add juice in small increments until the sweetness and fruit profile is where you want it.
 
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mdindy

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would you recommend fruit extract? I considered that as well.
 

madscientist451

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Extract is a good way to go, pour out 5 one or two ounce samples, and add drops of extract to the samples. When you figure out how many drops/oz gives you a flavor you like, do some math and figure out how much per gallon. When you add fruit juice to mead that ferments, some of the flavor/aroma is lost through fermentation, so it takes some trial and error to get it right. You can also add juice that has preservative in it and then it won't ferment, but it will lower your alcohol level.
 

fsr_racer

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Extract can be a good way to see how well the flavors are going to compliment each other, adding a small drop to a glass to see if you want to scale up, but I have read that since it is so concentrated it is very easy to add too much.
 

bernardsmith

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Totally agree with MarshmallowBlue. If you are starting to make a mead use the juice to replace the water. If you have already fermented the honey... my approach would be to go with the honey and not change horses in midstream. One thing you MAY want to consider is to dry hop the mead with a citrus flavored hop... I have made hopped meads (making a hop tea and then using that liquor as the dilutant for the honey and then dry hopping with additional pellets. Hopped mead is among my favorites.. but yer pays yer money and yer takes yer chance..
 
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mdindy

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hopping is not a bad idea either I have thought about that but also, maybe some citra or mosaic. I don't want to over do it tho how much would be good for 2 gallons?
 

bernardsmith

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Dry hopping with pellets? I wouldn't add more than about 0.2 oz per gallon. You can always up the ante if the flavor is not coming through but it is much harder to remove too much flavor. I am thinking of using zythos to hop a mead (my plan is to make a hop tea with .2 oz of zythos for a 60 minute boil , .1 oz for 15 minutes and .2 oz dry hopping in the secondary for a couple of weeks...
 
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