So I took my sample today, and I would like some advice (first timer here)

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Jan 26, 2020
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So I took the sample on my first mead today. Ive made some very crude recipes in the past but nothing with hydrometers or racking or any of that. This is my first proper attempt and I have been making a wild berry and treacle mead. It's stopped all air bubbles in the airlock, it's darkened significantly and the fruit has ceased floating in the demijohn, which I suspect means it may have finished fermenting. I took a sample, and did some readings, but Im not math strong and I'm not sure how to read my hydrometer as there arent many instructions, so the readings don't mean a great deal to me. I do have a photo of it though in case someone can help. Just a few things.

1. I can see no sediment, even though the liquid is cloudy
2. It tastes bloody great and also smells and tastes alcoholic. It's VERY dry with a fruity kick to it, like a sort of mulled red wine.
3. I know the thing on the hydrometer says 'bottle' but Im not sure if I should yet, as it's not clearing.

I've attached an image of it. I had a similar, slightly lower reading on a pure honey batch I am making as well. I suspect I'm in the right ball park, but not experienced enough to know how to proceed. If anyone has some feedback, I would appreciate it. They pure honey one has a lot of sediment, so I will be moving that over to another demijohn to escape that.

Should these start clearing on their own once I have racked them to another demijohn?


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If the hydrometer reads 1.000 or below (Or has the same reading for two weeks in a row), then it should be done. Let it sit for a few weeks or stick it in the fridge until it’s clear, then rack it off the lees (sediments). Cloudy isn’t much of an issue, but you don’t want there to be a bunch of yeast and fruit debris in your bottles.

The numbers you are interested in range from 0.995 - 1.160(+/- a bit) most beers are going to range between 1.040 and 1.065 with some big beers going into the low 1.1's (think Dubbel's and Tribble's).

Most of us make relatively high gravity meads that are closer to wines. I know that my favorites usually start in the mid 1.130's and I have gone as high as 1.150! Although there is a movement for lower gravity 'session' style meads which have lower SG's.

SG is primarily used in brewing as a proxy measure of how much sugar is in your must that the yeast can eat and turn into alcohol (My daughter giggles when I tell her I'm drinking yeast poo.) Reading your starting SG and comparing it to your final SG can give you a pretty accurate reading of how much alcohol is in your finished mead. In the picture you attached, it's reading 1.001 which means that your yeast has very likely eaten all of the sugar available. unfortunately without knowing the starting value, there's no way to calculate your expected ABV.

You can use a Vinometer: ( ) to tell you your approximate ABV as a backup. I use mine to confirm my SG calculations.