Follow up questions on my first mead making

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Follow up questions on my first mead making

Postby cascade » Wed Oct 15, 2003 4:24 pm

Follow up to this thread -

http://www.beertools.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1061

I just racked it to glass carboy tonight...

Original gravity - 1.095
Gravity after 30 days in my plastic bucket primary - 1.057

Before racking I was getting a bubble in the airlock about once every 20 - 30 seconds.

Racking did not go bubble free. Towards the end I lost some syphon power & ended up with a few good bubbles that definatly shook things up. It still has about the same color & opacity as the original must. I tasted it, & it tasted ok, I could taste the alchohol in there, but certainly not like the store bought mead I sampled.

Should I do anything? or should I just leave it be for another few weeks & continue on racking it every so often?

I left about 2 inches between the mead & the airlock when I racked it.

By the way, my yeast was the wyeast sweet mead variety, & after a good night sleep, the airlock hasn't started bubbling again, so I'm thinking it fizzled out?

Thanks for any replies!
cascade
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Facts?

Postby fitz » Thu Oct 16, 2003 5:03 am

What did you siphon it into, Carboy, or bucket.
Hopefully a carboy.
Check the bung in the carboy to make sure it is fitting tightly. CO2 can escape there very easy, and you won't see it in the airlock. can you see tiny bubbles floating up to the surface of the mead? How sweet is the mead. Even if the yeast has done its thing, and the mead is done fermenting, it will improve after it has cleared, and aged. continue to let it clear, and transfer when it is needed. definitely make sure the fermentation is done before bottling though.
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Racked to a Carboy..

Postby cascade » Thu Oct 16, 2003 10:01 am

I did rack it to a carboy. And yes, I do see tiny bubbles on the surface, but only where the must meets the glass of the carboy, so just around the ring.

The mead actually tastes just like fresh (warm) apple cider you would get froma cider mill, with a slight tang of alchohol & a slight taste of honey.

I've gotten other opinions that it fermented to slow & its in danger of not having enough alchohol to perserve?

So I guess I shouldn't bother putting in more yeast to get it going again? (1.095 original, to 1.057 current) From what I get out of that, it probably doesn't have much more alchohol than beer.
cascade
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Sorry to keep you hanging

Postby fitz » Wed Oct 22, 2003 7:34 am

I haven't visited for a while, so I left you hanging a bit. If you used a drier yeast, it would still ferment out. If you are seeing bubbles, it is still fermenting. It may need some yeast nutrient, if it is going too slow. As long as there are any bubles, don't bottle. What temp is your yeast rated at, and what temp are you fermenting at?
fitz
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No problem, I am patient!

Postby cascade » Wed Oct 22, 2003 10:04 am

Thanks for your reply Fitz!

The bubbles I am seeing are very very tiny, & there are very few. Not even enough to create a "head" on the must.

I spoke with brew supply store people & they suggested using ec118 yeast to kick start it again, so thats about where I am at. I started one batch of yeast starter & it went well until it got cooler in the evening & stopped on me, so I need to do it again hopefully this weekend.

I used the wyeast sweet mead yeast originally that was rated between I think 55 - 70 degrees, & my temp stayed right at 70 except for a couple suprise days that got warm & went up to about 78. So hopefully now that is cooler out I can keep the temp a bit more stable.

Right now the brew still looks like the original must so I wouldn't bottle it yet anyway, but I do want to get it better than it is. I'll probably do the kick start with the ec1118 to end up with a dry mead, then try to sweeten later with more honey after all the yeast is dead & gone.

Any other suggestions?

I just want to get through this first batch...

Thanks again!
cascade
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I like the 1118

Postby fitz » Wed Oct 22, 2003 11:12 am

That is a good yeast. I have used it for mead and regular wine. The mead should continue to ferment, and it has a killing off of 16 to 18% That should store well.
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