Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Mead I Have Known: Yuletide

In 2005, I brewed a batch of mead based on a recipe I found in the forums at Joe's Ancient Orange. This mead is dry and has a distinct holiday flavor. I brewed this on 5 June 2005 and bottled on 14 August 2005. I did bottle too soon and now I have sediment in the bottles. This is a great recipe, however, as one can get all the ingredients at your local grocery store. Here is the recipe:

5 gallon water
10 lbs Wildflower Honey
6 lbs Raw Clover Honey
6 small oranges
5 'handfuls' of raisins
7 cinnamon sticks
20 cloves
1 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp allspice
4 cups tea
6 tsp yeast nutrient
3 bags of Fleishman's Bread Yeast
OG: 1.123; FG: .995; ABV: 17%


-Safari Bob

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

More Racking Fun!

Today I racked two batches: 3-006 and 3-007.

3-006 is the Orange Blossom traditional. It has been perkin' along but lately it was down to a bubble every 3-4 minutes so I racked it. OG: 1.108; SG: 1.022; ABV: 11.2%.

3-007 is the Buckwheat traditional and I have been worried about it. This batch has stopped fermenting (I thought) way too soon; in fact I have been contemplating adding more yeast to kick-start it. Its color is dark brown and reminds me of a good porter. OG: 1.102; SG: .998!; ABV: 14%.

Turns out that the Buckwheat is done and bone dry at SG: .998. The must also reminds me of a porter and portrays a distinct bitterness without any alchohol bite. I can see that it will need extended aging, however.

-Safari Bob

Saturday, November 10, 2007

New Batch: 3-008

Tonight I brewed another batch of sweet, sweet mead! I love cysers - mead made with apples or apple juice instead of water - and so I could not resist all the fresh apple juice available in the fall. The must is rich, sweet, with the distinct flavor of apples and with a minty aftertaste that melds well with the sugar. This is the third cyser I have made this year. Here is the recipe:

Batch 3-008
1 gallon Mint Honey
3+ gallons Apple Cider
1 pound of dark Brown Sugar
5 tsp yeast nutrient
50 mg of Lavlin k1v-1116 (hydrated)
2 whole vanilla beans (for the secondary)
OG: 1.144

Mmm... I can not wait! I should bottle in Feb or March.

-Safari Bob

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

New Arrival: Mint Honey

I have a new honey: Mint Honey. I have not heard of this varietal but I cannot wait to try a show mead made of this. I am curious as to how much yeast nutrient I will need of if I should add yeast energizer.

I may, however, introduce fresh mint into the secondary - thus making it a methglyn - or I may try something else. Does anyone have a suggestion?

Here is the description of this honey:

Our Mint Honey is very dark, but does not have the strong flavor you would expect. It has a minty aftertaste, but many people say they taste only the richness that can be found in Mint Honey.

Mmm... a rich, full-bodied mead with a dark color and minty aftertaste. Sign me up!

-Safari Bob