Leap Year Mead 2

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First What Styple

  • Cirtus

  • Vanilla

  • Previous Recpe (Please explain)

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BuffaloSabresBrewer

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Just trying to organize this a little better so we can get a better idea what people want to do. The ideas that have been proposed so far have been a citrus, a vanilla, or a previous recipe. So this is what I put in the poll but please feel free to make a suggestion and Ill add that to the poll.
I think were trying to keep this fairly simple. Please feel free to post recipes.
I just thought if the participants voted it would be easier.


Recipe Here:
Here is my vote for a recipe. Please feel free to correct the math, because this is theoretical, and based on a 1 gallon batch size (Makes things easy)

3# of Honey (Best Local Variety you can get)
Yeast Nutrient (Follow your directions)
Water
1 Gram RED STAR Pasteur Champagne Yeast. (Whole pack for a 5 gallon batch)


Rack onto 2 vanilla beans (Split and scraped) for the entirety of secondary ferment.

This should give us a Beginning gravity of about 1.130 and the Pasteur will ferment it Dry.
By not cooking the crap out of the vanilla, it will maintain more of it's delicate flavor, and by adding it at the secondary stage, it will add a crisp clean vanilla taste, and not overpower our drink.

I suppose that the timing of primary ferment needs to be worked out, but we have plenty of time, and secondary ferment could go many moons.

With this we get what we all have talked about, #1. Simplicity, #2 Short shopping list, #3 Dry, #4 Modestly High ABV, #5 Not overly flavored.
 

Nurmey

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Thank you BSB! Just what we needed to get this thing decided. Times a wasting and I need to buy supplies.

Should we put a closing date for final recipe?
 
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BuffaloSabresBrewer

BuffaloSabresBrewer

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Not quite sure well need a bit of time to get ingredients. Some will have ore trouble finding ingredients than others.
So those brewers should speak up and help us decide. Ill be stopping around a few places to see what my honey options are.
 
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BuffaloSabresBrewer

BuffaloSabresBrewer

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I have a 6.5 gallon carboy that Ill be using and I plan on filling it as high as I can. One option we have is to brew our mead and add other flavors after fermentation has slowed. I dont know if I want to do this but if someone doesnt want to do what the group does they can break up their batch and leave half as planned for longer aging and add other flavors to the other half of the batch. Just a thought.
 
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If we do the vanilla, and add it at the beginning of secondary, do you think that 1 or 2 beans is enough? If you scraped the bean like Emeil and Alton Brown tell us to do, then add all of the stuff to the secondary, it should flavor up the whole thing pretty good, and I don't think we are looking for over powering vanilla either.
Specifically looking at the Tonga Vanilla from beanilla.com...They are advertising on this page.:fro:
 
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BuffaloSabresBrewer

BuffaloSabresBrewer

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Lets make the deadlines as follows
Style 11th
Recipe 13th
Any changes to the recipe that people might like to make (including different yeast strands) by the 15th
All specific instructions and ingredients that will be needed posted on the 15th. That will give us plenty of time to buy ingredients and debate over specific details.:D :D
 

Tusch

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I like the idea of doing a vanilla mead. I have no idea what that will end up tasting like, as a newb, but I love the idea. So the plan is to get a recipe settled on by the 15th and then brew on the 29th? I might have to do 1 or 2 one gallon batches, because my one big carboy is currently in use. But hey, if I can get 10 bottles of something tasty, I'd love to see what its like in 4 years.

And it seems that the higher gravity meads are usually chosen for long aging periods, will this be taken into consideration? Perhaps something with as high of an abv as 18 or 20?
 

archmaker

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I am game for this, and seeing how this is only my second Mead and I have not had a chance to taste any of my first (JAOM) I will follow the lead of the group. I am not going to vote as I do not know enough abut Mead at this point to make a decision.

Let us newby's know and I will start getting it together. Look forward to making a special Mead.

Thanks guys!
 
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BuffaloSabresBrewer

BuffaloSabresBrewer

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Ya I guess I wrongly assumed this would be a higher ABV mead. I assumed because this was a leap year mead this would be aged longer. But I vote for a higher ABV mead also.
 
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Does anyone know what the Pasteur Champagne Yeast will tolerate? I would be for going to a potential near what it can handle to keep it dry. If it'll go 13 or 18%...Let's do it.
On the vanilla bit...I saw a recipe for 2 beans and 8 oz of extract. I'm totally against the extract, but it makes me wonder about the 2 bean question I posed earlier.
 

Nurmey

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BigKahuna said:
Does anyone know what the Pasteur Champagne Yeast will tolerate? I would be for going to a potential near what it can handle to keep it dry. If it'll go 13 or 18%...Let's do it.
Here is some info on the proposed yeast

RED STAR Pasteur Champagne Dry
Dry White, Cabernet, Port, Cider, Mead, Fruits
Temp Range (°F): 59-86° F
Alcohol Tolerance Level (%): 13-15%
Fermentation speed: Fast
Flocculation: Medium-Low
White and some red, no tirage, restarts stuck fermentation. Not for sparkling wines. Will readily ferment to dryness.
Produces a very dry, clean mead. It can make a pretty alcoholic mead. Good ethanol tolerance. Minimal off-tastes. High alcohol tolerance.
 
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BuffaloSabresBrewer

BuffaloSabresBrewer

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I have heard champagne yeast will give you an extremely dry mead. Will that yeast give us something too dry?
 

Nurmey

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I think it will be very dry. I'm good with a different yeast but would prefer to keep with an easy to purchase dry yeast.

How about this one?

LALVIN ICV D-47 Côte de Rhône
Dry White, Blush, Sweet Mead
Temp Range (°F): 50-86°F
Alcohol Tolerance Level (%): 12-14%
Ferm. Speed: Moderate
Flocculation: Medium
Contributes mouthfeel in Chard and other whites, sweet mead. Can metabolize about 33% of available malic acid.
Makes mead with nice crisp character. Leaves a nice white zinfandel character that some people dislike but others love.Yields chardonnay buttery flavors. Good with cysers. Be sure to supplement with yeast nutrients, especially usable nitrogen.

Lalvin D-47 cost about a buck and can be found at most LHBS. I've used it in ciders and really liked it.
 
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Looks like the Pasteur Champagne Yeast will tolerate a bit more alcohol, I wonder if that is a better choice?
Does anyone know how much honey per gallon it takes to hit the 13% or 14% mark?
I am not sure if we want to go any bigger than that, seems like there is a lot of us "Newb's" going to participate, and I want to make sure we are all successful.
 

Don "Ho"

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How much of the Leap Year Mead is everyone making. I will have to get either another pail or carboy anyway.

Just as I was starting to get a little patience, Here I go getting antsy again!!:rolleyes:

Don "Ho"
 

nealf

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1 gallon here... Just picked up a 1 gallon carboy; and found a local apiary with some honey.

Neal
 
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BuffaloSabresBrewer

BuffaloSabresBrewer

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my yeast vote is the Pasteur
i hate white zinfandel and dont want my mead to have that characteristic
 

beala

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How on earth can we choose a yeast without a recipe, or even a style decided? At this rate, people will just recommend a yeast because they have it on hand. A better idea would be for people to post recipes, including a recommended yeast, and we'll vote on those. It seems backwards to choose a yeast, then try to design a recipe around that.

EDIT: And I'm actually voting for the vanilla. I decided I'll be making a citrus braggot for a different project, so a vanilla mead would be a good change.
 
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Here is my vote for a recipe. Please feel free to correct the math, because this is theoretical, and based on a 1 gallon batch size (Makes things easy)

3# of Honey (Best Local Variety you can get)
Yeast Nutrient (Follow your directions)
Water
1 Gram RED STAR Pasteur Champagne Yeast. (Whole pack for a 5 gallon batch)


Rack onto 2 vanilla beans (Split and scraped) for the entirety of secondary ferment.

This should give us a Beginning gravity of about 1.130 and the Pasteur will ferment it Dry.
By not cooking the crap out of the vanilla, it will maintain more of it's delicate flavor, and by adding it at the secondary stage, it will add a crisp clean vanilla taste, and not overpower our drink.

I suppose that the timing of primary ferment needs to be worked out, but we have plenty of time, and secondary ferment could go many moons.

With this we get what we all have talked about, #1. Simplicity, #2 Short shopping list, #3 Dry, #4 Modestly High ABV, #5 Not overly flavored.
 

Nurmey

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The recipe gets my vote.

Three pounds honey per gallon, Red Star Champagne yeast, two vanilla beans per gallon (secondary), and nutrient per directions.

Any other yays or nays?
 
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BuffaloSabresBrewer

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BigKahuna said:
Here is my vote for a recipe. Please feel free to correct the math, because this is theoretical, and based on a 1 gallon batch size (Makes things easy)

3# of Honey (Best Local Variety you can get)
Yeast Nutrient (Follow your directions)
Water
1 Gram RED STAR Pasteur Champagne Yeast. (Whole pack for a 5 gallon batch)


Rack onto 2 vanilla beans (Split and scraped) for the entirety of secondary ferment.

This should give us a Beginning gravity of about 1.130 and the Pasteur will ferment it Dry.
By not cooking the crap out of the vanilla, it will maintain more of it's delicate flavor, and by adding it at the secondary stage, it will add a crisp clean vanilla taste, and not overpower our drink.

I suppose that the timing of primary ferment needs to be worked out, but we have plenty of time, and secondary ferment could go many moons.

With this we get what we all have talked about, #1. Simplicity, #2 Short shopping list, #3 Dry, #4 Modestly High ABV, #5 Not overly flavored.
antother yay
 

Tusch

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Yay from my camp as well, though I may go for 3.5 lbs. I like the idea of this mead and will start looking at health food stores and ethnic groceries for quality vanilla bean sources.
 

rabidgerbil

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BuffaloSabresBrewer said:
So any preferred type of honey for this?
Since this is my very first mead, I am just going to stick with the 5# containers of honey that I can get at Sams Club, and get enough of them to do a 5 gallon batch.
 
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I want to point out the ad on this page for vanilla. I think that is where I will get mine, because 1 bean is $12.00 at the grocery store, and I think it's been there since I was about 5.
As far as honey; I think if we all choose the best LOCAL honey you can get. This is of course a relative term. I was thinking about using 1/2 Raspberry honey (Not Actually Raspberry flavored) from Ft. Collins, and 1/2 "Alfalfa" honey from Palisade. That covers 2 corners of Colorado, and doesn't even come within 150 miles of home.
This may create a little too much regionally for some tastes. I think it would be very cool to have the regional part, but if it puts some of you off, we should look at deciding on at very least a verity of honey, or some guidelines.
 
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BuffaloSabresBrewer

BuffaloSabresBrewer

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Well Im saying this before I look into the local supply but I think if we all could manage to find the same type of honey it would be nice. But on the other hand the regional variant thing is pretty awesome too. So I guess it doesnt matter to me much.
 

nealf

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Recipe sounds great; picked up my honey yesterday!!!! 18 days to go
 

JustMrWill

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Ouch! Just looked at Whole Foods...and they are selling whole vanilla beans 2 for $12. I think I will be ordering them from the above mentioned website.

Now to complicate it... does it matter what type of bean? Madagascar are only $4.95 for 5.

-Will
 
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I'm not very familiar with whole Vanilla beans, but there must be a difference.
I do not have a problem with the Madagascar...at least I don't think I do. And for a buck each, It's better than the $12.00 for the ONE I can get at the local grocer.
 
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BuffaloSabresBrewer

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BigKahuna said:
I'm not very familiar with whole Vanilla beans, but there must be a difference.
I do not have a problem with the Madagascar...at least I don't think I do. And for a buck each, It's better than the $12.00 for the ONE I can get at the local grocer.
don't know much either about the beans but anyone that has any thoughts about what we should use should speak up
 

shunoshi

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I think I'm in on this one. I have an extra 1 gallon jug that I can use for this. I'm really curious how vanilla would taste in a mead. I don't know squat about vanilla beans so I'll probably go with that Madagascar deal at beanilla.com myself. As for honey, finding a local source in MN has been quite a challenge. I haven't been able to find much yet. I'm guessing I'll just have to go with the grocery store variety for this one since there aren't any running farmers markets in the winter here.

I do have to say that I think a vanilla mead would probably taste a little better with some residual sweetness. I can't picture a really dry vanilla mead tasting good, so my vote for yeast would be Lalvin D-47.
 

Tusch

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OK so we definitely need to rope in one or two experienced mead makers. This whole group seems to be relative newbs and none of us seem to know squat about vanilla beans. So who's gonna put out the banners and ask for help? haha

For instance, on the beanilla site, what kind of the 4 or 5 available would be best?
 
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