Flowers in the mead

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Plowboyzzt

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Found a recipe in a book on sacred and herbal healing beers that offers a recipe for heather mead. I want to try this, but thought I'd warm up on blackberry mead as I have access to both the honey and the flowers in my area. If anyone has any experience, here's what's going on. It's quite time consuming to pick the 12 cups of flowers recommended in the heather mead recipe, so I've been picking a couple cups of blackberry flowers a day and freezing them in a gallon baggie thinking that would work OK. But they are turning brown after a couple days in the freezer and look rather unappetizing. Still OK ? Today I picked and used the dehydrator instead....a lot less volume in the final product, but seems it may be better. Also tried dehydrating yesterday's pick from the freezer and they turned very brown.....seems the freezer may not be the way to go.
Also, I'm leaving the green sepals on the flowers as the amount of work involved in separating would be pretty insane. I did see one person saying their dandelion wine did not suffer from greenery.
Thanks for any thoughts on this.
 

pvtpublic

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You'll be ok with the sepals, fortunately. I wouldn't wish that kind of labor on most of my enemies. Perhaps measure out your flowers before you dry them, so that you know how much you have. As far as the ones in the freezer turning brown, I personally wouldn't use them as believe they may be oxidized. No bueno, nicht gut. I haven't used blackberry flowers before, but I've done yarrow, rose, chamomile, and marigold flowers. I learned my lesson the hard way about measuring before drying with the yarrow flowers. Took a week to taste anything again...
 

Raptor99

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What does yarrow flower mead taste like? I have wild yarrow and blackberries on my property.
 

pvtpublic

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I haven't used flowers in mead yet, but it's on the to do list. I've used yarrow and the other flowers in beer a number of times though, but I'm still dialing in my dosage. The flavor of yarrow is very similar to the scent, but it's got a decent amount of bitterness to it, especially when boiled. The leaves are very bitter, and shouldn't be used in mead. I would put dried flowers into secondary, when you've got a healthy dose of alcohol in there to kill any wild bugs. Taste it daily and pull them when you get the flavor that you like. This applies to both the yarrow and the blackberry flowers.

As far as keeping the flowers fresh, try wetting paper towels, squeezing them out and wrapping that loosely around the flowers, and stick that little pack into a ziploc in the fridge.
 

ckil

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I did a dry carbonated heather mead as my first mead this year. Started drinking it after 4 months or so it's great. I bought a big bag of dried heather flowers, 2oz from brewers best. If I recall I boiled them for 5-10 like a tea then let them cool down for 30 min to an hour before adding the honey and putting it in the fermenter. This was for a 1 gallon batch. Tastes light and the aroma is great. I made 22 or so 6.3 oz bottles for this 8% mead. It's been a big hit.
 

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Aweston

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Found a recipe in a book on sacred and herbal healing beers that offers a recipe for heather mead. I want to try this, but thought I'd warm up on blackberry mead as I have access to both the honey and the flowers in my area. If anyone has any experience, here's what's going on. It's quite time consuming to pick the 12 cups of flowers recommended in the heather mead recipe, so I've been picking a couple cups of blackberry flowers a day and freezing them in a gallon baggie thinking that would work OK. But they are turning brown after a couple days in the freezer and look rather unappetizing. Still OK ? Today I picked and used the dehydrator instead....a lot less volume in the final product, but seems it may be better. Also tried dehydrating yesterday's pick from the freezer and they turned very brown.....seems the freezer may not be the way to go.
Also, I'm leaving the green sepals on the flowers as the amount of work involved in separating would be pretty insane. I did see one person saying their dandelion wine did not suffer from greenery.
Thanks for any thoughts on this.
I’d say try a different flower that you can pick en masse like dandelion, meadowsweet or lilac so you can infuse right away. Save the blackberry for the fruit and make a fruit mead. 🙂
 
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