Mead - the homebrew thread

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Joined
Apr 10, 2013
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Any homebrewers on this board also make mead? Love to hear your thoughts, successes, failures, experiments, etc...

I got most of my basic info off of Homebrew talk's stickies, but I find the signal to noise ratio over there to be terrible.

I have made one batch of mead, dry mead, 12.5, 1 gallon of wildflower, 1 gallon of clover. Pretty happy with it overall. I aged half of the clover mead on cranberries and it turned out very good. I attempted to age half of the wildflower on "spices" (cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, star anise) and came out way too heavy on the palate numbing spices. If I want to try a spiced mead in the future I think I will try using the tincture method instead.

I just picked up a small jar of honey at the local farmer's market (wildflower/alfalfa blend) and it has an amazingly rich flavor, definitely want to make some mead with it, thinking semi-sweet, straight mead. For anyone that has made a straight mead, do you add any tannins? I have heard a little bit of black tea goes a long way.
 
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I've made a dozen-or-so batches of mead. I currently have 6 gallons of cyser in a fermenter ready to add 10 pounds of raspberries to. I am going to freeze-distill half of it (my first attempt at ice-mead).

I will occasionally brew an IPA or a hoppy pale ale or a stout, but since I brew so infrequently these days I tend to brew things that take several months or more to finish. Mostly meads and sours these days.

I've never added tannins but I do like to add some white-wine (or hard cider) soaked oak cubes (medium toast French oak) to the fermenters and let it sit. They tend to add a bit of tannic dryness to the finished product and a little bit of complexity from the oak.
 
Joined
Oct 1, 2013
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I have done 15 or so batches of mead ranging from dry tupelo, triple berry (raspberry, blackberry, blueberry), vanilla bean with wild flower honey, blueberry honey, galberry honey, .....
I have never added tannin as I follow the keep it simple method. Water, nutrients, energizer, yeast, honey (no boil), camden
Its served me well took first in dry category of domras cup with the tupelo
 
Joined
May 9, 2013
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NYC
I make mini batches of mead. I kind of Frankenstein the recipes from different ones I find online. It's more manageable to go for 1 gallon batches for me since you can experiment more and when you don't have much room. It takes a lot longer to brew mead so I can get a few started at the same time as well. I normally use an unfiltered wildflower honey from Florida, 48oz for a one gallon batch. I've never tried adding spices but have done melomels. My blueberry mead was quite a hit and only took 3 months to make.

What kind of yeast is everyone using? I tend to use the LALVIN 71B-1122 “NARBONNE” which works well but I would like to try something different.
 
Joined
Jul 2, 2013
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Windsor, CA
My first mead was bottled last week. A one gallon batch of the foolproof Joe's Ancient Orange Mead recipe. It tasted really good on bottling day. Now it will sit in bottles until Feb. I'll post the recipe if anybody is interested.
 
Joined
Apr 10, 2013
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Cleveland, OH
Very new in the mead making game but it has been very gratifying so far. Plan on making a sweet spiced cyser (Apple pie clone) and a coffee/toasted coconut/macadamia nut mead when I come back from vacation.
Now if anyone of you assholes wanna send me 30-40# of honey as "extras" in a trade, let's work something out :rolleyes:
 
Joined
Apr 12, 2013
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Old Mexico
I've been doing some reading after experiencing my first mind blowing mead a few weeks ago, and I really want to give it a shot... I will be following this thread now as well.
 
Joined
Jun 19, 2013
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Up On Cripple Creek
Thinking of doing my first batch this weekend. From what I've read, people seem split between the boil/heat to at least 180F crowd and the don't bother crowd (Michael Fairbrother says nothing above 80F is necessary). What have you all had the best results with as far as temperature?
 
Joined
May 8, 2013
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The only reason people heat honey is so it leaves the container easily. There is absolutely no reason to cook/boil honey for anti-microbial purposes. All it does is drive away those delicate aromatics present. There is a reason that 100 yr old honey exists and is still edible.
 

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