Mix of herbs in secondary, will it work?

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giuzep89

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Hello friends,
I got some traditional mead fermenting right now, recipe as follows:
- 10 liters batch, of which 3.15kg wildflower honey;
- OG 1.090 (I expect it to finish dry)
- Lalvin 71b
- Wyeast beer nutrient blend, which I'm adding following a SNA schedule. I would have used Fermaid 0 or K but here in the Netherlands I just can't find them. The mead seems to really friggin like this one though, it goes nuts for hours after each addition!

So I got these herbs I'd like to add in secondary:
- Meadowsweet
- Lemon balm
- Elderflower
- Orange peel (ok it's not a herb, right)
The first three are dry. How should I go about it? Do you just add them in the container itself or in some form of filter? And how long should I leave them in? I get that this is probably a matter of personal taste, but I just wanna avoid overshooting too much.
Thanks!
 

videojunkie1208

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Make a tea bag out of sanitized cheesecloth and add them. You may want to make a separate one for each herb so that you can pull them as your mead takes on the flavor profile you can balance it.

Take frequent samples to check your flavor. (I would get sterile pipettes if you're not set up with a sample valve. )
 
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giuzep89

giuzep89

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Make a tea bag out of sanitized cheesecloth and add them. You may want to make a separate one for each herb so that you can pull them as your mead takes on the flavor profile you can balance it.

Take frequent samples to check your flavor. (I would get sterile pipettes if you're not set up with a sample valve. )
That sounds perfect. I'll do that. I only have a turkey baster to take samples :D but no basting with it. Only mead!
 
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giuzep89

giuzep89

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You're absolutely right. On that note, how would you sanitize cheese cloth?
 

Raptor99

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I made a Viking herb metheglin, including meadowsweeet. I simmered the herbs for 10 min. then let them steep until cool. I added the liquid to the primary, along with the herbs in a brew bag. The same procedure should work for the secondary as well. In my opinion, with herbs you will get a lot more flavor if you steep them first in hot water. That also takes care of any concerns about sanitization. You can also boil the herbs in the brew bag if you want.

Before I made my metheglin, I made several batches of herb tea to test the proportions of the different herbs. I wanted to get the balance right before I made my mead.
 
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giuzep89

giuzep89

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I've been making a few test-run teas with them. And funnily enough I'm less convinced to use them now I actually smelled and tasted the teas; I guess I didn't expect such a strong green tea flavor from them (which i don't like)
 

Raptor99

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I try to taste everything before I put them into my wine or mead. If I don't like it, I don't put it into my recipe. In my test teas I tried to get the grams per cup about the same as I would use in the wine, so that the strength was about the same.

I have not used the other herbs in mead, but meadowsweet has a grassy flavor. Historically meadowsweet and other herbs were often added to mead for their medicinal properties. Some recipes combine them with peppermint or tart cherry to provide other flavors.

My recipe is modified from this one: https://www.norsetradesman.com/blogs/news/fill-your-horn-with-this-viking-era-mead But I used modern methods and D-47 instead of wild yeast.
 
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