Clarity is a virtue

Discussions about mead making.
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Josh Sexton
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Clarity is a virtue

Postby Josh Sexton » Thu May 21, 2009 1:21 pm

I recently emailed Josh Lindsay to answer some of his questions. I thought I'd post here to answer one of the questions again. Josh said "We talked briefly about adding honey to sweeten before bottling. How much? and in what manner? Heat with some water? just pour in and stir???"

I will be more brief than the email. :D

Mimir's Wisdom (the mead I brought last meeting) had 1 lb of honey added post fermentation to 3 gal. (btw I brew like I cook....just add stuff I think would be good. I have a really hard time doing a recipe just as it is written, unless I wrote the recipe) I just added what honey I thought would be good, but it did turn out delicious. So when adding honey post fermentation I guess you could use the 1lb pr 3gal as a gauge, but taste it for yourself and do what you think is best for your palette. Ken Schramm (author of The Compleat Meadmaker) said (I paraphrase) make mead that you want to drink. If no one else likes it...so what! If you like it then it is good and you succeeded.

I also advised Josh to NOT stir in the carboy since that will stir up all the junk in the bottom that has taken a month or more (mine took 8 months) to clear out and settle. One thing that judges in mead competitions look for (according to Ken Schramm....one of the only consistently appearing judges in mead competitions) is CLARITY. It takes a long time for the mead to become clear. Time is your friend. Someone else (I think it was Steve or Wade maybe not, started this post before checking) mentioned that a beer they just finished that last bottle of was the best of the batch and if they had waited the few months more to START drinking it then the whole batch would have been excellent. Be patient. Mimir's Wisdom took almost 2 years to get that tasty and the mead Eva brought last meeting I think was almost if not over 3 years.

Anyway, give your mead time to clear and be patient!

Clarity is a virtue (in mead, and as far as I know in almost all beers as well [Hef's being the only exception I know of, but having never brewed beer, I will soon though!, I cannot speak for the beers])
"Fairy tales do not teach children that dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales teach children that dragons can be killed." G.K. Chesterton

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Josh Sexton
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Re: Clarity is a virtue

Postby Josh Sexton » Thu May 21, 2009 1:24 pm

oops, didn't finish the answer.....sorry


I just added the 1 lb of honey (and some oak chips as well) and left it alone for 91 days. A very cool property of honey is that it will suck up and absorb ALL moisture around it, it just may take a while. So the honey I added was melded in the mead long before the 3 months were up, but I was also aging with oak, thus the time.
"Fairy tales do not teach children that dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales teach children that dragons can be killed." G.K. Chesterton

Josh Lindsey
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Re: Clarity is a virtue

Postby Josh Lindsey » Thu May 21, 2009 7:12 pm

Do you ever use finers, such as Sparkalloid?
Josh

"Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite; and furthermore, always carry a small snake."
-W.C. Fields

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Josh Sexton
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Re: Clarity is a virtue

Postby Josh Sexton » Fri May 22, 2009 9:48 am

No (probably why it takes so long for me) I haven't used any finers. I have heard that they could impart some flavor....I take all that back. I have used (can't remember name) the plastic one once, but that was the only time I have used anything like that. I don't remember tasting any difference, but having only used it once, who can say. I think I will use it again on my current batch that is still fermenting with Distiller's yeast (should render out ALL sugar [18%] into alcohol!) Thanks for the reminder that I actually have some!
"Fairy tales do not teach children that dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales teach children that dragons can be killed." G.K. Chesterton

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Eva Jones
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Re: Clarity is a virtue

Postby Eva Jones » Wed May 27, 2009 11:01 am

I added 2 3/4 tsp Sparkloid to my very first batch of 5 gallons -
Sweet Show Mead on 12/7/06 then bottled on 12/14/06.

I works pretty fast. Of course, I wasn't being lazy with this first batch
of mead because I wanted to taste it.

Eva

Peter Munoz
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Re: Clarity is a virtue

Postby Peter Munoz » Fri Oct 28, 2011 8:42 am

I've added finnings to my meads and havnt noticed much of a flavor difference . That being said . As of now I have 5 gallons of a mead sitting . after primary I transferred to a secondary to clear with biofine . Cleared up . Tasted ok . Few weeks later I transferred again . Much better ! Funny thing is what I thought was clear had a considerable amount of sediment . Not a lot but it's noticeable . If you were to filter would you do a coarse and fine ?
Having the fortune of tasting many meads. There is a huge difference between clear and a slightly hazed mead . It's so tough to wait !


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