An Apple Mead.

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duffymp

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Has anyone tried an Apple Mead. I have a great source of honey but unsure what type of apple would be great to add to the must.
Would it be better to add an apple flavoring after the mead has fermented and ready to bottle?

Thanks
 

Malkore

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apples contain fermentable sugar, so if you add them at bottling, you risk a re-newed fermentation and exploding bottles.

for many fruits, you add them to secondary. but for apples you can either use apple juice or cider, or peel and slice up a ton of apple and add them to the primary.

main thing is if you use juice, it cannot have potassium sorbate (or any sorbate). you want apple juice, pure and simple. if i has ascorbic acid, that's ok.

if you can't find bottles, check the frozen juice. most frozen concentrates won't have sorbate but watch out for added simple sugars. Apple juice concentrate should be the only ingredient.
 

fatbloke

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try this recipe i have and it turned out great
http://wijnmaker.blogspot.com/2009/10/cyser.html
Luc's recipes are good and his blog is an excellent source of info.

As for what kind of apples, well I'd juice some eating(sweet) apples and some cooking (sharp) apples as they're easily available - usually. If you can get them, you could also include some "cider" apples (bitter sweet/bitter sharp) for complexity.

Of course, you can just use some apple juice, then add honey to up the gravity/sugar, ferment that, but when it's getting down (gravity between about 1030 and 1010) add some more apple juice specifically for more fruity taste.

Or you could just ferment the juice/honey mix, then when it's finished fermenting, sulphite and sorbate it to prevent further fermentation and then top it up with apple juice.

regards

fatbloke
 

wyvern59

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Oh, oh. Why can't the juice contain potassium sorbate? I might have made a mistake!
 

fatbloke

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Oh, oh. Why can't the juice contain potassium sorbate? I might have made a mistake!
Because its the chemical used to prevent the multiplication of yeast cells.

It is routinely used once the ferment has finished, usually in conjunction with sodium or potassium sulphite i.e. once a wine or mead is fermented and cleared etc, then you'd add the sulphite to stun any remaining yeast cells and the sorbate to prevent the yeast cells multiplying.

regards

fatbloke.

p.s. and yes, the sulphite is the same stuff used for preservation as well
 

djrockinsteve

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I have 5 gallons of apple cider mead ageing. It looks great and smelled wonderful.

My cider was 1.047 out of the jug and the honey made it an even 1.080 I started with 6 gallons of Musselman's apple cider 100%, no pres. excepy ascorbic acid I believe. Added nutrients for the yeast, pectic enzyme (21 drops) Lalvin EC-1118 yeast.

Can't wait to bottle this one. I will back sweeten but not sure how far. Maybe around 1.010-1.015 many of my sweet wines are good at.
 

fatbloke

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I have 5 gallons of apple cider mead ageing. It looks great and smelled wonderful.

My cider was 1.047 out of the jug and the honey made it an even 1.080 I started with 6 gallons of Musselman's apple cider 100%, no pres. excepy ascorbic acid I believe. Added nutrients for the yeast, pectic enzyme (21 drops) Lalvin EC-1118 yeast.

Can't wait to bottle this one. I will back sweeten but not sure how far. Maybe around 1.010-1.015 many of my sweet wines are good at.
Well if you backsweeten with honey, you might get a haze. Though I'd have though it might be good to go to about 1.020 and then add a little malic acid to cut the sweetness and I've found that it also seems to bring put the "appliness" a bit as well (experiment a bit first though it might not be to your taste).

regards

fatbloke
 

djrockinsteve

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I prefer to sweeten with inverted sugar. Another way is the simmering down a juice. I get folks lined up for taste testing when I back sweeten. I am starting to get good at hitting the final gravity, at least I have an idea where in the beginning I was lost!
 

wvbrewer

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If you are going to use juice that contains sorbate you will need to let the must sit for 24 hours. Go ahead and add all the ingrediants except for the yeast and allow the it to sit for atleast 24 hours. Then you can pitch the yeast. This method has worked for me before. It will allow the sorbate to disapate from the must.
 

fatbloke

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If you are going to use juice that contains sorbate you will need to let the must sit for 24 hours. Go ahead and add all the ingrediants except for the yeast and allow the it to sit for atleast 24 hours. Then you can pitch the yeast. This method has worked for me before. It will allow the sorbate to disapate from the must.
Are you sure ? Because I understood that was how you removed excess sulphite which is released into the air, whereas sorbate is rather different (like the benzoates).
 

wvbrewer

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I am not to sure now. I did a search and could not find anything to back it up, so it might be best to avoid it. Sorry for that posting.
 

djrockinsteve

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As far as I know sorbate will not disapate from your wine. You may have not had enough sorbate to prevent all the yeast from breeding.
 

wyvern59

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Right now it is bubbling away. We'll see how it turns out. I am going to take a SG reading this evening. My biggest headache is that I broke my hydrometer just before I pitched the yeast, which is champagne yeast by the way.
 

the_rayway

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Sorry, I know this is an older thread, but I was wondering:

Fatbloke - you said that if you backsweeten with honey you could get a haze? I have this exact problem right now! What do I do to get rid of it? Any advice?
 

fatbloke

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Sorry, I know this is an older thread, but I was wondering:

Fatbloke - you said that if you backsweeten with honey you could get a haze? I have this exact problem right now! What do I do to get rid of it? Any advice?
pectic enzyme?
Nah, pectolase is for pectins and anecdotally it helps with colour/flavour extraction.

Hazing from backsweetening honey is, as I understand it, protein. So it depends but time often works as does the 2 part "quick clear" type finings. I also understand that amylase (which is mainly for starch) can also help.....

I'd say that if its ready for bottling/drinking then go for the 2 part finings as that's usually quickest.....
 

WVMountaineerJack

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To add to FatBloke, if the 2 part finer doesnt work bentonite, especially one of the newer speedy bentonites or even bentogran will pull out the proteins very well. I also read on here about sweetening with sugar for a mead, why? Put a little more honey taste at the end, especially if you are using some very nice varietal honey to freshen up the taste. Cracked
 

the_rayway

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Thanks Cracked!

Ok, I tried the two part fining and it's still hazy. I think I'm going to give the bentonite a try, and if all else fails - on to filtering.

Grrr.
 

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