This is a basic mead.
The only components are honey and water.
I started with 7.5 lbs of Wildflower honey and 1 lb of Orange
Blossom honey, which is about 0.75 gallons worth (Honey is
about 12 lbs / gallon). The honey was dissolved into reverse-osmosis
water (closest thing to pure rain circa 1600 AD), and then
boiled. The froth was removed, and allowed to cool. Since
my pot isn't big enough for 3 gallons of mix, this was short
about 3 quarts of water, which was added to help cool down
the entire mixture. Starting Specific Gravity was 1100, which
comes out to about 13% potential alcohol.
The acid content was titrated out to be about 0.15%; I was
trying to get to about 0.60% acid, so I added about a total
of 9 tsp acid blend (1 tsp per gallon will raise acidity about
0.15%). The final acid was recorded at 0.60%.
Once the mixture cooled, I added 3 tsp of Pectic Enzyme,
2 tsp Yeast Energizer, and 3/4 tsp grape tannin to the mix.
3 Campden tablets were added to bring sulfite levels to about
50 ppm. The mix was left loosely covered to let the sulfite
I used a yeast starter, which consisted of about 1 qt of
honey / water mix (2 parts water to 1 part honey, Orange Blossom
honey), 1 tsp Yeast Energizer, and 1 pack of Red Star Montrachet
yeast. The starter was added to the must about 4 hours later.
Most of the current yeast strains commercially available are
tolerant of 100 ppm sulfite, so the 50 ppm that was in there
should not be a problem.
This is a very nice dry mead. It is also very nice in marinades
and stir fry.
08 August, 2003: Starting Gravity:
1100. Estimated alcohol content: 13%
13 August, 2003: Specific Gravity down to 1038, transfer
09 September, 2003: S.G. tests out to 1000; fermentation
03 October 2003: Added Potassium Sorbate to stabilize. Waiting
for it to clear before bottling. Also added 3 campden tablets.
02 November, 2003: Racked
17 November, 2003: Added Isinglass to help precipitate cloudiness.
30 January, 2004: Very clear now, since I've ignored it for
the past few months. Taste wise, it needs some work. It's
very dry, and I think it could use a bit of sweetness.
16 February, 2004: Racked
01 March, 2004: Added 3 tbsp of Bentonite slurry to help
20 March, 2004: Bottled. Total yield was as follows:
750 ml bottles: 10
375 ml bottles: 4
187 ml bottles: 7
08 August, 2004: Took one 750 ml bottle, added about 3/4
cup of "tea" made from the following:
1 tsp dried Rosemary
1 tsp dried Basil
1/4 tsp dried Majorjam
1 tsp dried Savory
1 tsp dried Thyme
11 fresh sage leaves
This will be used as a part of an injectable marinade for
Thanksgiving fried turkey.