Blackberry! Chai #3!

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Bam! I am rocking your world with two new meads I started last Thursday. The first is brought to you by a gallon of blackberries:

  • 1 gallon blackberries (local)
  • 1 gallon+1 qt wildflower honey (from Bee Well..bought a new 5-gallon bucket of honey)
  • 5tsp (approx 1.5 tbsp) Fermax yeast nutrient
  • 1/2 tsp irish moss
  • 1 packet EC-1118 yeast

Stats:

  • Started: 11 Aug 2011

And the second is a re-iteration of Chai Mead, this is version #3, hoping to refine this into a reliable, regular recipe.

  • 1/3c vanilla chai mead
  • 2tbsp each whole cloves and whole cardamom, crushed
  • 1gallon+1qt wildflower honey
  • 5tsp (approx 1.5tbsp) Fermax yeast nutrient
  • 1/2 tsp irish moss
  • 1 packet EC-1118 yeast

Stats:

  • Started: 11 Aug 2011
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Today’s work: Chai Mead

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Just a few notes about bottling the Chai Mead.  The clarifying agent worked very well (even though I forgot to warm up the second stage of it before I added it, whoops), and it tastes delicious.  Note: I would like to have had more chai flavor in it next time, so don’t hold back.

Cleaning the bottles took about an hour, which is normal.  The rest took about a half an hour–I’d like to bring my overall bottling time down since it is the most annoying and generally most time-consuming part of the process, but that’s something to work on in the future.  Bottle brush was very helpful.

A note about the new sanitizer: it seemed to create more bubbles than I am accustomed to with the iodine-based sanitizer.  These extra bubbles worried me, but the necessity for “air-drying” after you sanitize should, ideally, take care of them.  I don’t really know how thorough one must be about this air-drying, but I haven’t been able to discern yet any negative effects on my mead from not completely air-drying the bottles (or the equipment, for that matter).  To get rid of the bubbles when I was bottling, I rinsed most everything before I put the mead in it…anybody have any thoughts on the rinsing after sanitization?  I know it’s not generally approved, but it seemed preferable to me at the time.

Anyway, it is delicious.  Here’s the complete stats for the chai mead, and I will leave it alone for as long as possible before I start drinking it.

  • Started: 1 September 2009
  • Rack 1: 29 September 2009
  • Rack 2: 18 November 2009
  • Rack 3: 3 January 2010
  • Potassium Sorbate added: 8 February 2010
  • Bottled: 14 February 2010

Chai Mead, first post

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So first post about Chai Mead…I’m pretty excited about this batch.  As a general note, I think I’m going to make a page for each batch of mead that I make to keep track of all of them.  Just a thought, I think having posts tagged appropriately with the right batch of mead might be enough to keep track of each batch.  Any thoughts?

Chai mead was made with Bee Well wildflower honey, typical amount of honey (approximately 12 lbs, I usually get 1 gallon plus 1 quart of honey from Bee Well when I stop by).  I basically brewed a small pot of chai mead with some looseleaf tea that I got from Whole Foods a while back, then took that strongly-brewed pot and threw it all (tea included) into the must bucket with the honey and water.  I let it all get to a “warm” temperature (something mostly subjective at this point) and pitched the yeast.

The mead is smelling/tasting great, but the only holdup has been with the cloudiness of the mead.  For the first time I’m trying out a clarifying agent (see previous post) to make it more clear before I bottle it.  Currently I have let it sit for a while, tonight I added the potassium sorbate (to stop the reproduction of the yeast, now a required step with every batch to prevent bottle bombs) and later this week I’m going to add the clarifier before I bottle it.  I’ll post when I bottle to see how it went.

Stats:

Started: 1 September 2009

Rack 1: 29 September 2009

Rack 2: 18 November 2009

Rack 3: 3 January 2009

Potassium Sorbate added: 8 February 2009