Just racked my first mead batch to the carboy. Can I reuse, repitch or pitch on the old cake with mead like you do with beer? Any negatives? Seems a waste to throw it away when I have another 20lbs of honey hanging around.
Could be a waste of 20lbs of honey to throw it on a sick cake
your last batch didn't smell off at all
you haven't left it sitting out for a week
your yeast is still rolling, or petered out because the mead is dry (this is specifically to the exclusion of yeast that petered out because it reached its alcohol tolerance)
You can reuse the old yeast, however, since meads are generally made with higher levels of alcohol than beers, there tends to be more selection/mutation pressure on the yeast and you may get drift that creates some difference in flavors if you reuse the same yeast multiple times. That could be good... or not. Reusing them once should not be a problem at all. If you do reuse the yeast, be sure to aerate them well as they will need to rebuild the sterols to allow more division.
Since I mostly use dry yeast, which are as cheap as dirt, I generally just pitch fresh yeast for the sake of consistent results.
You know I have never took into consideration that a lot of homebrews don't have a homebrew shop close to where they live. I guess I am spoiled have a couple within 20 miles north and downriver here in the Detroit area. So I guess cost sometime would not play into the decision on should I to pitch yeast from my pervious batch if I had to order online for some and have to wait for it. I definitely would be more resourceful if I wasnt so close to a homebrew store. I wonder how of you out order online because youre not close to a local home brewing store?