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Mead rookie questions

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FL_Javelin

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Hello all, new to forums, glad I found them.

I have been brewing beer for about 15 years, 1-2 batches a year so not very often but I have done it enough to understand the procces. I have been interested in mead lately and want to try my hand at brewing some.

First my questions;

Can I use a plastic carbouy for fermentation?

I dont own carbouys, I use plastic buckets for my beer. If needed I will get glass carbouys but I have access to plastic ones, thats why I was asking.

Will mead tie up my beer making plastic buckets for a long time?

I suspect the answer may be yes from my research. I want to brew another beer batch soon so I dont want to tie up my ferminter too long. Guess I may need 2 carbouys.

Is this a good first time mead kit?
http://www.williamsbrewing.com/WILLIAM_S_MEAD_KIT_P290.cfm?UserID=1487028&jsessionid=3030e05e1c22$5C$8A$1

I have been using Williams brewing for years for my beer and I love thier kits so I thought I would try thier mead.

Being in Florida I will use orange blossum honey from local supplier.

I have never even tasted any mead but based on my tastes in wine, I would probably enjoy something in between dry and sweet.

Thanks so much for your time.
 

sirsloop

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I suggest using glass. Mead will have to sit around for many months, which will tie up your buckets. Buckets can permeate air as well, glass does not. If you go with gallon sized batches you can get them from the recycling center or get cheap 1gal size jugs of wine (what I did). A #6 stopper fits them.

As far as the recipe... I would get local honey, and get a mead pack from AHS. IDK what you are shooting for as far as flavor goes... you'll probably end up using Lalvin D47 for an Orange Blossom mead, or Lalvin EC1118 or Redstar Pasteur Champagne yeast if you want to do super dry.

I also suggest visiting some local liquor stores and getting yourself a bottle or two of commercial mead. Can't hurt to try it out before you commit to a kinda costly batch that takes a year to finish.
 

Aspera

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Mead is very forgiving. You can make mead using whatever you use for brewing. If you want a mead of intermediate dryness, then make up your "wort" to and OG of about 1.080 and pitch your favorite ale yeast. If its too dry, add 50% honey/50% boiled h2o (about 1 lbs of honey). If its too sweet, repitch with yeast nutrients plus a champagne yeast or d47.
 

Aspera

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Another option is to do a batch of your favorite beer and substitute a large portion other fermentables for honey. Its muuuuccchhhh nicer than any other sugar that I have used. A pound or two of premo orange blossom is also nice in any dessert wine.
 

sirsloop

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Aspera said:
Another option is to do a batch of your favorite beer and substitute a large portion other fermentables for honey. Its muuuuccchhhh nicer than any other sugar that I have used. A pound or two of premo orange blossom is also nice in any dessert wine.
See my blueberry mead that was made using Saaz hops :tank:
 

Aspera

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I noticed your Buckwheat Mead. A while back i made one using 12 lbs of buckwheat honey. It created a very unusual whiskey/oak flavor. I'm not sure I liked it, but it sure was pretty unique.
 

NurseNan

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I've also done a hop mead, with Perle and Saaz hops. I've been playing with honey for a while, and some of my favorites are cinnamon, maple, agave, and chocolate. So far, I've liked them all, I just like some more than others. I do need to make more mels, though, and more straight meads featuring varietals.
 
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