Need support on how to fix my mead

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Matt T

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Hello ,
I'm new to making mead first time. And I have made a batch in a 5.5 gal carboy I used room temperature bottled water around 68-70 ish degrees and added 30lbs of honey by miscalculation . I hydrated the yeast and added 10g of 71B wine yeast to the carboy but I didn't remember to let the yeast cool down before adding it to the must. left it for 48 hours and. Came back and no bubbles. So I stirred it and left it for another day . I still didn't see any results, so I decided to add another 10g of hydrated yeast and left it for a day I'm on day 4 and no bubbles but it looks like a foam ring on the outter side of the carboy is forming . And no.. I didn't use any nutrients . And I'm not sure if I shocked the yeast which I think I did. But any ideas on how I can fix it ? I would like a sweet mead with an ABV around 9-15 % any help would be great !!
 

CKuhns

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30 pounds of honey for a total volume of 5 gallons?

You have way too much sugar from the honey for your 71B yeast to effectively ferment it. (Any yeast will have trouble.) The only option I know of to correct it would be to make sure it is mixed very well. Then divide it in half placing 2,5 gallons each in two 5 gallon carboys and add water to each for a total volume of 8-10 gallons.

If 10 gallons you will then have a Starting Gravity somewhere near 1.105 if fermented to completion 1.000 near 13.8 ABV. Something most Mead, Wine or Champaign yeasts including your 71B can easily consume. Seriously consider re-pitching some 71B and adding nutrients as well via a SNA protocol like TOSNA 2.0 or 3.0

Good luck let us know how it goes.
 
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Matt T

Matt T

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Thank-you for the time to explain what I could do . I definately will try it !!
 

bernardsmith

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Yeah, You never really want to have a starting gravity much above 1.100 unless you absolutely know what you are doing and why you are doing what you are doing.
 
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Matt T

Matt T

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Thank-you to all for the great help. Just out of curiosity what could be the out come if I add nutrients to it as is to help boost the yeast ? And/or how long do I have from now if I mix well and dived it into two separate 5 gallon carboys and follow all the proper steps before it goes bad ? I'm on day 4 but the other carboy will. Not be delivered to my place for a week? I hope that's not too long ...
 

dwhite60

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It most likely will not ferment out as it is even with nutrient. It's just too much sugar for the yeast to handle. You really need to dilute it.
 
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Matt T

Matt T

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Ok how long do I have until the mead is spoiled ? I have another fermenter coming by Wednesday . Is that enough time ?
 

madscientist451

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Pour off some of your honey/water mixture into the jars the honey came in or whatever else container you have and then add water to the carboy.
You can calculate how much water to add depending on the gravity (there are on-line calculators) or just add some water, take a reading, and then add some more if you need to. (Don't add all the extra water at once )
Then, use the TONSA calculator to determine how much yeast nutrient to add:
I've used the TONSA method many times and it has really improved my mead; I recommend using Fermaid O as a nutrient and Fermax when re-hydrating your yeast.
 

amber-ale

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Ok how long do I have until the mead is spoiled ? I have another fermenter coming by Wednesday . Is that enough time ?
if even 71B wont grow because you added too much honey to your mix, then I wouldn't worry about it. Nothing else will grow either.
 

Timmings95

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So how much of the must do you need to withdrawl in order to add nutrients , yeast ect. I tried the TONSA program but it doesn't tell you how many millaleters you have to take out in order to do this ?
 

amber-ale

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Stir first. Then Split your must into two containers and add the same amount of boiled (cooled) water , leaving at least 4 inches airspace. Add nutrients and yeast and an airlock.
Next time try a SMALLER batch. Try 5 litres, just to get your technique figured out
 
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I had a stuck mead batch once and fixed it by using a starter; pulled off about 500 ml and added about 100 ml of water. Pitched the yeast into the starter and waited for fermentation to start, then pitched into my 5 gallon batch. But 30 lbs of honey is just too much, follow the suggestions to dilute into 10 gallons. I usually go for ~12 - 15 lbs for 5 gallons and I get an OG of ~1.08. If your goal is to have a sweet mead, you will need to finish fermentation, then kill the yeast with potassium sorbate and Camden tablets and sweeten to taste. Backsweeten is the right term, I think.
 

CKuhns

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@ Matt T

Ok how long do I have until the mead is spoiled ? I have another fermenter coming by Wednesday . Is that enough time ?

I don't think anyone answered your question.

Assuming you took care with sanitation your very high in sugar must will very likely be OK until Wednesday when your new carboy arrives. Be sure to keep it closed with an airlock and don't open it until your ready to split it. It is very likely that a small amount of fermentation has started and the CO2 generated should "blanket" your liquid keeping the nasties out.
 
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Matt T

Matt T

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Thank-you to all for the help I followed the proper steps and used TONSA and now the mead is finally fermenting !!!
 
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