What esters does saccharomyces cerevisiae or bakers yeast produce when making a mead?

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Beer Viking

Beer Lover
Mar 22, 2020
Reaction score
BC, Canada
Hello everyone,

I will be fermenting my mead at around 60-75 degrees and I was thinking of just using bakers yeast or saccharomyces cerevisiae. What esters would be produced by this yeast and what should I expect them to taste like?

im not sure that thats something that can be predicted so well especially with bakers yeast.

in my experience temp, wort gravity, pressure and time all have an influence on ester production. i am not a fan of esters and thus ferment everything on the cold side and aim for clean tasting lagers and ales sans esters. esters to me are an off flavor.

60 to 75 is a wide range and i imagine you will get different amounts of ester formation at the extreme ends of that range.

bakers yeast is not great at making mead imo you would be better off with a wine yeast or mead yeast.

bakers takes forever to clear and forever to clean up.

but it can make beer cider or mead with time.

its not my preferred choice tho.

75 degree mead with bakers yeast will taste funky if you ask me. and i wouldnt even attempt that without stepped nutrient additions.

you may be asking for trouble.

mead is harder for me to make palatable than beer cider or juice wines.

good luck
Most mead, wine, cider, beer, bread, and bakers yeasts ARE Saccharomyces cerevisiae, regardless of how they might otherwise be categorized by a manufacturer. There are probably thousands of different strains commercially available. If your yeast does not have a specific name, designation, or manufacturer, there is no way to predict how your mead will taste. And even if there is a specification, the odds are iffy anyway that it will come out anywhere close to any commercially provided specification. Mead does its own thing and there are many variables at play including the yeast strain of course but also specific gravity, temperatures, nutrition, etc. Bottom line: There is no friggin way we can tell you exactly how your mead is going to turn out, no way.
Thank you everyone for the replies. I wanted to make a mead that was really authentic so I thought just using bread yeast might be a good idea but apparently that was wrong. I know the Vikings did not send away for modern brewers yeast. I was hoping to maybe get a banana flavor so I thought that maybe hefeweizen yeast would work instead of wine of mead yeast but I can't find any right now so would Fermentis SafAle T-58 work well for a mead?
Sometimes, "authentic" actually kind of means "what we imagine it might have been". There are sources where you can find actual ancient mead recipes. An episode of The Mead House podcast [featuring Susan Verberg] comes to mind.

T-58. The flavors beer yeasts can produce in wort might not be produced in mead must. Different inputs, different outputs. If you're interested in learning what Belgian beer yeasts might do in a mead, research Bray Danard's experiments on the subject. He found WY1388 to be his preferred and built his BOMM recipe around it. Great mead, just drank a 3yo bottle of it, doesn't taste Belgian-y.
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