Moving... what do to with the mead?

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badmajon

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So, my mead is at Day 11 and it's getting to about 16% which means I estimate that by the end of this week (20th of feb) it will be finished fermenting given PC's tolerance of 18%. The thing is I am moving late March and I don't have time to do a rack to secondary. Is it possible to let the finishing/mellowing process occur in the bottle? I'd probably bottle in about 3 weeks.

Sorry if its kind of a stupid question I just don't want to mess this mead up, for a harsh young brew it actually tastes good and is getting pretty dry.
 

MedsenFey

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You don't want to bottle it until it is DONE; completely, totally, unquestionably DONE. If you are wrong, you may have exploding bottles. You really need to see that the gravity doesn't move at all for a few weeks to be certain, especially with the yeast that have high alcohol tolerance.

The simplest answer for moving is put it in a Corny keg if you have one. Then you can throw it around with abandon.

Otherwise, a PET Better Bottle is not going to break during transport, and that works well.

If it's in a plastic bucket, you could leave it in that until you are finished moving - a few weeks won't make a huge impact in most meads.

If it is in a glass carboy, they make crates that will hold them like glass water bottles, but transporting in a glass carboy would not be my preference. I think I'd find the time to rack it into something else - that will take less time than bottling it.

Medsen
 

pulpfiction32

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You really need to rack this before you move, because

you need to elimnate as much of the lees before you put it in a

car where it will be bumped and shaken and the lees is put all back in suspension
 
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badmajon

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Thanks for the replies a few questions come to mind. Firstly, I was under the impression that sloshing around will mess up my mead so I could not take it with me as-is. Secondly, I thought I could add potassium sorbate to the mead and stop the fermentation process, then bottle. Is this not so?
 

EvilTOJ

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Don't mess with it. Don't add sorbate, don't worry about the sloshing. That's only a worry if you had a half full carboy that had oxygen in it instead of CO2 like it does now. Potassium Sorbate will kill the fermentation, but after a few weeks? No. Forget it. It won't be anywhere near done.

MedsenFey and AZ_IPA said it best. Mead is one of those things you leave alone for a long time. Moving is one of those times. Just leave it alone.

If you're bottling in three weeks, prepare for disappointment. Mead is not like beer. It doesn't finish quickly. Mead takes years to get good, more to get tasty. My 2007 mead is finally coming into it's own. Smooth and honey like, with an alcohol kick that's disappeared. When I first bottled it a year ago it tasted like a rubbing alcohol gargle with honey mixed into
 

Nepsis

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I'm rather new to the world of mead, but I'm also always moving. As a matter of fact, my full-time home has wheels and I drive it to the new jobsite every 2-4 weeks. And my mead sits inside my home whilst I drive it. Again, I'm pretty new to this homebrewing thing, and so far have bottled 2 one-gallon batches of JOAM (last fall), and 2 more one-gallon batches of JOAM using EC1118 (a couple days ago). They've all come out plenty tasty (though I've only had a little bit of the recent batches...waiting for it to mellow in the bottle a bit). The rule of thumb I'm operating off of is just to make sure I've been in my current location long enough for everything to settle back out before I do the bottling. As I get into more complicated fermentations, I may have to re-evaluate, but for these basic recipes, things have worked just fine.

--R
 

Dr_Gordon_Freeman

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I would not rack it, just leave it in primary. If you rack it, the bottle will fill with oxygen and THEN slosh around. That would be bad. Right now it's under a nice layer of CO2. It'll clear back up after you move it.
 

fatbloke

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Now me ? I'd just say "what the hell" and get it racked "as is", just to remove the majority of the lees/sediment. If the secondary is a plastic bucket, then you're gonna have to be careful about moving it anyway as the greater surface area for liquid movement. If your secondary is going to be a glass carboy/demi-john, then rack it over as the tiny amount of open surface isn't going to cause any issues - the amount of airspace is going to be pretty minimal anyway so the % O2 is even less.

Don't forget, meads don't tend to suffer from oxidation like wines do.....

Though in glass, it's a case of being careful during the handling anyway.

So it's just a case of the how and when........ but it's still valid to re-remind you that it's easier to carry liquids when they're properly confined, than to have too much ullage space for the liquid to move in (yes, I drive trucks - 44 tonners and have done a lot of work with bulk liquids - and powders).

S'up to you.....

regards

fatbloke
 

eulipion2

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I have some experience with this, having moved myself this past May. The mead was already in secondary, but there was still a fair bit of yeast. It was in a glass carboy. I buckled it into the back seat of my car and surrounded it with pillows, blankets, and other soft items, and made sure to keep the sunlight off it. No problems!
 
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badmajon

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There is this stuff called "wine saver" that you are supposed to spray into opened bottles of wine, I suspect this is Co2 or something, could I rack and then apply this?
 

PSB

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I will be going to through this same process in a couple months hopefully. I have a mead in secondary aging. It's been there for about 2 months at this point in time. I worry about the mead sloshing about without a good layer of CO2. Any suggestions?
 

eulipion2

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I will be going to through this same process in a couple months hopefully. I have a mead in secondary aging. It's been there for about 2 months at this point in time. I worry about the mead sloshing about without a good layer of CO2. Any suggestions?
Top off your carboy with CO2 and put an undrilled stopper in it. If it'll make you feel better, wrap teflon tape, plastic wrap, or whatever to secure it. I used teflon tape.
 

MedsenFey

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I would not secure a fixed stopper with tape (or anything else) on a new mead. A little warming and a little late CO2 production from what you thought were dormant yeast can easily create an exploding carboy. They are not meant to hold pressure - better to keep an airlock on or allow a stopper to pop out.
 

eulipion2

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Okay, okay, if the mead's still going when you're ready to move it, use a drilled stopper with airlock, but I still recommend securing it. Hit a pothole too hard and you could have a mess.
 
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