Mead! Mk Ii And Iii

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BrewinWalruss

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So after the resounding sucess of my last mead (4 bottles left -2 for dad for chrissy, 1 to share for chrissy, 1 to show gf's family for chrissy), I decided to put down 2 more this weekend and establish a special christmas reserve of a bottle or two from each not to be opened until next christmas!

Here's what I have so far:

Melomel: 1/2 kilo strawberries (from dandenong market, squished up a bit with a potato masher)
3 kg Orange Blossom Honey (No boil no pasterise just melt and mix)
1 medium-sized valencia orange
2 pinches cinnamon (powder)
1 pinch Nutmeg (powder)
Yeast: Vintage Wine yeast - good against wild yeastie beasties!
Methaglin: 3 kg Leatherwood honey
2 cinamon sticks
2 generous pinches cinnamon powder
2 generous pinches nutmeg
4 cloves
1 +1/2 Medium sized Valencia orange
Both 5 litre batches
Yeast: Vintage Wine Yeast- as above!
I plan to ferment them for at least a month, probably closer to 8 weeks... see how we go from there. I want the melomel to be pretty sweet but I doubt I'll have a problem with that with so many strawberries!
I would have taken an OG reading but... well it was less than what my meter is capable of.


The last recipe:

Fermented 6 weeks
2.6 kg Stringybark Honey
1 large naval orange
2 pinches cinnamon
1 cinnamon stick
1 pinch nutmeg
Vintage wine yeast

Shoved in the fridge for 2 months (weird I know... I kept planning on killing the yeast somehow but never did....)

Opened: A gorgeous semi-dry very orange-y (especially on the nose) drink with a smooth honey middle-taste and the warmth of about 12% alcohol on the throat. Not much to detect of the nutmeg/cinnamon save a touch blended with the honey overtones. Tasty tasty stuff!
 

brando

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These both sound awesome!



Having popped the cherry with JAO mead this year, I can't wait to get into again soon, with some different styles.



What fermentation temps mate?
 

nuggetron

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what equipment do we need to make mead?
tempted to make one but have nothing to make it in
if i go to the home brew shop what do i buy? 5L demijohn and what?
 

Spork

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Bugger all equipment needed. I make mine in an empty 4.5 litre Johhnie Walker bottle (Raffle prize a few years ago) but some just use big fruit juice bottles, mineral water bottles, whatever, as long as it's food grade if plastic. I use an airlock in a rubber bung, but you can just use glad wrap and rubber band.
 

nuggetron

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wont the plastic expand and split if the fermentation gases cant escape or doesnt if ferment much? might put one down boxing day if i cant do it with a plastic bottle glad wrap and rubber bands :)
 

Spork

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The CO2 will find it's way out. Some will go straight through the glad wrap, the rest will find it's way under the rubber bands and glad wrap.
 

nuggetron

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wonderful, makes it a stack cheaper than buying demijohns etc etc
one last noob question
once its completed how do we get the mead out without getting the crap on the top or bottom?
 

nuggetron

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mead is down
15L batch, everyone seems to love it and i didnt wanna do a small batch and have to wait 2.5 months for the next lot
did it in a big water bottle, total cost 58.86, twice the amount of beer and half the amount returned
but from all reviews its awesome, hoping it works out for me
much respect to all the help
 

BrewinWalruss

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mead is down
15L batch, everyone seems to love it and i didnt wanna do a small batch and have to wait 2.5 months for the next lot
did it in a big water bottle, total cost 58.86, twice the amount of beer and half the amount returned
but from all reviews its awesome, hoping it works out for me
much respect to all the help
The honey makes the price a little bit more, but your return is still a lot cheaper than the (quite limited) store available meads... I spent 30 bucks each on my 5 litre batches (not including equipment). Love the reward of a tasty mead though!
 

Tanga

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Just a note. Strawberries are unlikely to add much sweetness. They have less sugar than most fruit, and when making wine from them sugar is usually added. They will add some flavour and colour though, just little in the way of residual sweetness (that will need to come from the honey). Good-luck! Sounds delish!
 

thebeemann

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mead is down
15L batch, everyone seems to love it and i didnt wanna do a small batch and have to wait 2.5 months for the next lot
did it in a big water bottle, total cost 58.86, twice the amount of beer and half the amount returned
but from all reviews its awesome, hoping it works out for me
much respect to all the help
If you realy like Mead get a bee hive , a hive in a surburben back yard can yield up too 50 kg of nice honey a year ( not that i think everyone should have bees or anything :beerbang: ) after set up it costs nothing but an hour or so a month checking them and at harvest most beekeeping clubs will lend or hire extractors to people cheap , just a thought :icon_cheers:
 

nuggetron

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If you realy like Mead get a bee hive , a hive in a surburben back yard can yield up too 50 kg of nice honey a year ( not that i think everyone should have bees or anything :beerbang: ) after set up it costs nothing but an hour or so a month checking them and at harvest most beekeeping clubs will lend or hire extractors to people cheap , just a thought :icon_cheers:
dont know if i like it yet
never tasted mead in my life, just love brewing stuff
lil worried about it though, the first day it rapidly fermented, glad wrap lid swelled up, i undid the rubber band once had it triple twisted down to double and now its not doing anything, its in a brew fridge on for about 3 hours during the hottest part of the day
im assuming its ok cu its a slow fermenting brew and hence it isnt fermenting much, when should one be worried about it?
 

thebeemann

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dont know if i like it yet
never tasted mead in my life, just love brewing stuff
lil worried about it though, the first day it rapidly fermented, glad wrap lid swelled up, i undid the rubber band once had it triple twisted down to double and now its not doing anything, its in a brew fridge on for about 3 hours during the hottest part of the day
im assuming its ok cu its a slow fermenting brew and hence it isnt fermenting much, when should one be worried about it?

Once you have tasted good mead you wont go back , brew time depends on the recipe temp and yeast i have had mead brew out in 3 wks and used a different yeast same recipe and it took 2 months , i dont know if it was the yeast or the extra time made it ferment fuller , but the 2 month one was nicer ( cremier smoother) im just starting in beers and it seems everyone relies on the sg meter ( i work in a winery so i get mine tested at work ) i think like beer take a sample reading wait a few days take another and if the gravity has gone down its working Good luck and let us know how you get on.
 

nuggetron

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sweet will do that tonight
is it safe to taste test the sample?
 

thebeemann

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sweet will do that tonight
is it safe to taste test the sample?

Always taste :D it is one of the best ways to tell if it is ok, believe me if its not ok you will know :icon_vomit:
 

nuggetron

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sweet
a proto type cider nearly made me vomit last night, hoping time will save it haha
 

nuggetron

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for such a quick and easy recipe everyone should make it and chuck it in the shed for a few months, dont need to worry about it, buy a bottle of water set it up and thats about it till drinking time
 

BrewinWalruss

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Ok guys, the mead got racked today... fermentation is stopped or very nearly there... all that's left to do is let it clear. I read some reports of using bentonite to clear wines, beers and meads and was quite intruiged, not least of all as I'm a bit worried about the problem with oxidation (Which I hear bentonite reduces).... anyone used bentonite as a clearing agent before? What I have is lab-grade pure bentonite... ?
 

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