Your favorite Melomel

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

digdan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2005
Messages
496
Reaction score
7
Location
Pasadena, CA
Once the fruit season is in full effect I'm headed to orchards, but I have yet to decide what kind of melomel to make.

I need input on personal experiences and successes with melomels. What was the tastiest melomel you've made/had, and what were the pitfalls you ran into

I'm open for anything, citrus, berry, melon or otherwise.
 

gratus fermentatio

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 30, 2008
Messages
13,484
Reaction score
4,059
Location
Montana
I made a plum melomel from black & Italian plums that just ROCKS! Double additions of fruit (1st in primary, 2nd in secondary), Just the right level of tartness, Beautiful red color from the skins, 12% ABV & goes down real smooth. It took 2 years before it was drinkable though, mostly due to the wildflower honey I used. Use clover, or alfalfa honey & it might be ready quicker. Everyone who tasted it just raved about it. I'll be making it again this year for certain, maybe a double batch.

If you're wanting to try a citrus melomel, I'd use zest only If I were you; I learned the hard way that the juice adds very little flavour to a mead, but it adds a great deal of acid. I've got a blackberry melomel going now, I'll let you know how it turns out in about a year & a half. Regards, GF.
 

david_42

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 8, 2005
Messages
25,581
Reaction score
189
Location
Oak Grove
I've done well with blackberries, but most years I have a lot of blackberries to experiment with. I've made multiple batches of blackberry 'cider', by fermenting the crushed berries; then I add the honey to part of the crop.
 

JarrodH

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2009
Messages
258
Reaction score
2
Location
San Diego, CA
I did a Strawberry melomel last year when the price of Strawberries went way down that was really good.

Recipe I followed:

Strawberry Melomel

Ingredients:

9 lbs orange blossom Honey
1 lb clover honey
12 lb strawberries
Sweet Mead Yeast (White labs)

Procedure:

Clean and hull the strawberries; chop into a few pieces. (Don't crush
them or you'll have an impossible mess at racking.) Put them into a
sanitized plastic-pail primary.

Bring 2 gallons of water to a full boil. Remove from heat and
immediately add the honey; stir thoroughly. (This will sterilize the
honey without cooking the flavor out of it.) Cool to about 150-160F,
pour over the berries in the primary fermenter with 2 gallons more of cold water. Cool to pitching temperature (below 80F) and add yeast starter. Stir thoroughly to mix and aerate.

After 5 days, push the floating mass of strawberries down into the
fermenting mead (the equivalent of a winemaker's "punching down the
cap").

After the strawberries have become very pale--probably ten days or more-
- strain out as much of the strawberry mass as possible, then rack into
a glass carboy. Be prepared for the racking tube to clog. (A stainless
"Chore Boy" over the bottom end of the tube will help.)
 
OP
digdan

digdan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2005
Messages
496
Reaction score
7
Location
Pasadena, CA
Does the flavor of strawberries carry through? Was this a medium, dry, or a sweet melomel?

I did a Strawberry melomel last year when the price of Strawberries went way down that was really good.

Recipe I followed:

Strawberry Melomel

Ingredients:

9 lbs orange blossom Honey
1 lb clover honey
12 lb strawberries
Sweet Mead Yeast (White labs)

Procedure:

Clean and hull the strawberries; chop into a few pieces. (Don't crush
them or you'll have an impossible mess at racking.) Put them into a
sanitized plastic-pail primary.

Bring 2 gallons of water to a full boil. Remove from heat and
immediately add the honey; stir thoroughly. (This will sterilize the
honey without cooking the flavor out of it.) Cool to about 150-160F,
pour over the berries in the primary fermenter with 2 gallons more of cold water. Cool to pitching temperature (below 80F) and add yeast starter. Stir thoroughly to mix and aerate.

After 5 days, push the floating mass of strawberries down into the
fermenting mead (the equivalent of a winemaker's "punching down the
cap").

After the strawberries have become very pale--probably ten days or more-
- strain out as much of the strawberry mass as possible, then rack into
a glass carboy. Be prepared for the racking tube to clog. (A stainless
"Chore Boy" over the bottom end of the tube will help.)
 

CBBaron

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2007
Messages
2,780
Reaction score
21
Location
Cleveland
Only have done a few so far but the black raspberry melomel is easily my favorite. Ofcourse for that one I picked my own fresh berries and used locally produced unprocessed honey, so the ingredients were much higher quality than my other attempts. However this one is so good I will definitely be picking black raspberries again this summer for another batch.

Craig
 
OP
digdan

digdan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2005
Messages
496
Reaction score
7
Location
Pasadena, CA
Blackberry sounds like something that will make my list. I would assume you use blackberry honey as well?

Anyone got a kickass blackberry melomel recipe they would like to share?
 

summersolstice

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
1,414
Reaction score
57
Location
Central Texas, USA
Blackberry sounds like something that will make my list. I would assume you use blackberry honey as well?

Anyone got a kickass blackberry melomel recipe they would like to share?

Blackberry is my favorite as well, in either wine or mead. No need to use expensive blackberry blossom honey. I like to use about 3 pounds of berries and about 1.75 quarts of honey per gallon to get to about 1.090. Follow the appropriate nutrient addition guidelines and, aside from possibly adding more or less berries in the primary and some more berries in the secondary and oak during bulk aging, that's pretty much all the recipe I use.
 

JarrodH

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2009
Messages
258
Reaction score
2
Location
San Diego, CA
Does the flavor of strawberries carry through? Was this a medium, dry, or a sweet melomel?
You do get a good strawberry aroma as well as a strawberry flavor. It came out really good for being my second mead. Edit: it came out pretty medium as far as the sweetness, but still can kick your butt. :) The sweet mead yeast stopped at a good spot.
 

Poobah58

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Jun 24, 2007
Messages
2,232
Reaction score
83
Location
New Milford, CT
Blackberry is my favorite as well, in either wine or mead. No need to use expensive blackberry blossom honey. I like to use about 3 pounds of berries and about 1.75 quarts of honey per gallon to get to about 1.090. Follow the appropriate nutrient addition guidelines and, aside from possibly adding more or less berries in the primary and some more berries in the secondary and oak during bulk aging, that's pretty much all the recipe I use.
Hey SS, I have a Blackberry aging right now (4 months). I have some medium toast oak cubes. Is an ounce good for a 3-gallon batch?

PS sorry for the hijack. :D
 

summersolstice

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 28, 2008
Messages
1,414
Reaction score
57
Location
Central Texas, USA
Hey SS, I have a Blackberry aging right now (4 months). I have some medium toast oak cubes. Is an ounce good for a 3-gallon batch?

PS sorry for the hijack. :D
It isn't so much the amount, but the time you leave it in, that determines the flavor/aroma. An ounce is certainly not too much for 3 gallons but thief a little every couple of weeks. You want to shoot for a profile that offers slightly too much. It will then age and integrate well.
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2009
Messages
18
Reaction score
1
Location
KE-no-SHA, Cheeseheadland
Do yourself a favor and try a Honeydew melon mead. SWMBO insisted we try, and I'm happier with the results of this mead than any other we've done.

If you do try it, over-ripe melons seem to work the best, and shoot for about one and a half melons per gallon, rounded up.
 

JarrodH

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 1, 2009
Messages
258
Reaction score
2
Location
San Diego, CA
Do yourself a favor and try a Honeydew melon mead. SWMBO insisted we try, and I'm happier with the results of this mead than any other we've done.

If you do try it, over-ripe melons seem to work the best, and shoot for about one and a half melons per gallon, rounded up.
I have thought about trying this since I am growing honeydew melons in my garden and love eating them, but had not found a guideline or someone who had tried it.
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2009
Messages
18
Reaction score
1
Location
KE-no-SHA, Cheeseheadland
Anyone got a formal Honeydew recipe?
Honeydew mead

18# light honey (this batch came from a huge local grocery store that sells local wildflower at a decent price)
seven over-ripe honeydew melons (EDIT: I'll be using about three more melons next time)
water to five gallons
narbonne yeast (3 quart starter)
staggered yeast nutrient additions (per HighTest)

We did fruit in primary. Cut melons in half, then cubed into aprox. 1-inch cubes which were placed into a coarse nylon bag, then pounded all to bits with a potato masher after the bag was put into a fermenting bucket. Must was mixed in a separate sanitized bucket, then poured over fruit. Pitched yeast, staggered nutrient.

Primary was three weeks, secondary four, cold crashed for two, presently crystal clear in tertiary (three weeks now). Will be bottling soon, and this one is drinkable now. Gonna be tough to keep my hands off of these bottles!
 
OP
digdan

digdan

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 7, 2005
Messages
496
Reaction score
7
Location
Pasadena, CA
Thanks for the Recipe. What do you mean by "per HighTest" ?

and how do you stagger your yeast nutrients?
 

Tusch

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 14, 2007
Messages
1,379
Reaction score
14
Location
Spring Valley
Read the Mead sticky...

It was written by the member hightest and he is a big proponent of staggered nutrient additions. He knows way more than most of us about mead so he is one of the go to guys and experts (along with solstice and wayneb and others)
 
Top