Looking for fun!

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum:

Paradolia

Member
Joined
Sep 13, 2022
Messages
11
Reaction score
4
Location
Oscoda, Michigan
I started brewing a few years ago, and decided to continue because although some parts can be time consuming and frustrating, I find making mead to be highly enjoyable, and the anticipation I get from having something that I'm forced to wait on is like a little adrenaline rush every time I check on the fermentation.

So far, I've only used one recipe, Joe's Ancient Orange, Clove and Cinnamon Mead, with a couple variations.

Instead of using the 3.5#/gal of honey the recipe calls for, I've been using 5#/gal, and in place of the water, I found that apple cider has a unique flavor addition to the batch. I've made 5 batches so far, and I try to do one batch with water as the base liquid, and one batch with cider as the base liquid. I love how they turn out, and the fact that I can inadvertently get a ridiculous ABV out of bread yeast.

Currently, I have 11.5 gal in the basement fermenting; 5 gal of the cider base, 5 gal of the water base (both with a even more changes to the recipe) and 1.5 gal of the cider with a change to only the delivery of the non-fermentables.

The changes with the two 5gal batches I have are that instead of throwing the entire oranges in, I decided this time to zest and juice them instead to help with the ease of getting the solids out after fermentation, because I got tired of trying to squeeze water-logged oranges through a tiny hole at the top of the carboys I use. The second change with the two large batches I'm currently fermenting is that I swapped out the yeast from Fleischmann's active dry, to WLP004 Irish ale yeast from White Labs. After a slow start with the yeast, and having to pitch an additional started to the water batch, both fermenters are going strong and I hope to have the fermentation done in time for Halloween.

So far, I'm having a blast, though it's a bit more financially draining than it would be if I had smaller batches, lol. I also have an oak barrel on the way just to see what happens when i put some in there to age.


I hope I can remember to keep up with updates (I have ADHD), and look forward to hearing what other people think!
 

Dan O

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Messages
850
Reaction score
580
Location
NH
Do you like your mead to be really sweet? 5 lbs of honey plus the sweet from the cider = super sweet (to me & my palate). What is your OG reading? What is your FG reading of some of your finished ones?
 
OP
OP
P

Paradolia

Member
Joined
Sep 13, 2022
Messages
11
Reaction score
4
Location
Oscoda, Michigan
Apologies for taking so long to respond! I posted the thread just before heading to work. I absolutely love a good sweet mead! Sometimes I get a sweet mead, sometimes I get a dry mead. I'm still learning about how to achieve the desired results, and thus far, I've merely let the yeasties do their thing until they stop bubbling the airlock more than about once per minute. At that point I've been racking and bottling.

I cant recall what the gravities were for the first two, and I forgot to take a starting reading for the melomel most recently bottled, but the starting SPGR for the metheglin I currently have was 1.138, and the final SPGR was 1.010. I think that makes about 16.8% ABV, and the metheglin I started with my stepson last year had a starting SPGR of 1.121 and a final SPGR of 1.016, which I believe makes about 13.6 ABV.

The three fermenters I have going now, one has a starting SPGR of 1.160, one has 1.124, and one has 1.162 (estimated because my hydrometer stops at 1.160)
 

Dan O

Supporting Member
HBT Supporter
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Messages
850
Reaction score
580
Location
NH
I recommend starting to read up on terms & safety here...
👇👇👇👇

This is an all-in-one, start to finish guide on making a better mead. You will walk away from this feeling like you already found the answers to many of your questions & concerns.
 

MX1

Texas Ale Works
Joined
May 27, 2008
Messages
1,564
Reaction score
230
Location
Monument , CO
Apologies for taking so long to respond! I posted the thread just before heading to work. I absolutely love a good sweet mead! Sometimes I get a sweet mead, sometimes I get a dry mead. I'm still learning about how to achieve the desired results, and thus far, I've merely let the yeasties do their thing until they stop bubbling the airlock more than about once per minute. At that point I've been racking and bottling.

I cant recall what the gravities were for the first two, and I forgot to take a starting reading for the melomel most recently bottled, but the starting SPGR for the metheglin I currently have was 1.138, and the final SPGR was 1.010. I think that makes about 16.8% ABV, and the metheglin I started with my stepson last year had a starting SPGR of 1.121 and a final SPGR of 1.016, which I believe makes about 13.6 ABV.

The three fermenters I have going now, one has a starting SPGR of 1.160, one has 1.124, and one has 1.162 (estimated because my hydrometer stops at 1.160)
Best I can tell from my reading is to plan on about 100-110 points of attenuation, so if you want a sweet mead at a FG of 1025 the start around 1125-35, or plan on back-sweetening. I have not figured out if fermenting to gravity is the best way or back-sweetening is better

If I am pushing bad information please let me know!!!
 

bernardsmith

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 10, 2012
Messages
5,647
Reaction score
2,066
Location
Saratoga Springs
Hi Paradolia - and welcome. You will find, I think, that most folk on this forum (and others) who consider themselves seasoned wine or mead makers, decide in advance the ABV they are aiming for and then ensure that the yeast have not one gram more sugar than they need to hit that mark. Those wine makers will then stabilize their wines or meads and if they want to make them sweeter, they bench test to add the precise amount of sweetness that balances the richness of flavors, ABV, the acidity and the tannins. Nothing should dominate, everything should be nicely integrated.
 
Top