Author Topic: Dry mead with SG 1.050???  (Read 1024 times)

Offline S Warne

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Dry mead with SG 1.050???
« on: March 29, 2015, 11:03:38 PM »
I'm not sure what to do with a batch of wild flower mead that finished dry with a specific gravity of 1.050. It is 6 months old but still has a very bitter taste (no sweetness what so ever). The bitterness does not linger too long as an after taste. I back sweetened a sample and it is ok but I am perplexed by the high SG. I did not measure SG when I started but used 10 lbs honey and 3.5 gallons water. I was shooting for about 15 ABV. I pitch Red Star champagne yeast. Any thoughts /suggestions about the SP or how to tame the bitterness? It does have a good alcohol content and mouth feel. Also, i'm not opposed to turning it into a braggot or something else if I need to.

Offline jimmykx250

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Re: Dry mead with SG 1.050???
« Reply #1 on: March 29, 2015, 11:31:39 PM »
Thats a lot of honey for 3.5 gallons. Did you do any staggered nutrient additions? Without knowing your starting gravity its hard to tell what the yeast did. I have only used lallvin 711b and have had great luck. I have been told champagne yeast is supposed to dry it out too much but again I cant say cause ive never tried mead with that yeast. All I would suggest i give it more time. This is one drink that really changes over time- unfortunately waiting has never been a strong suit for me. I wish you luck and enjoy your creation whenever that may be. Please post what you end up doing.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2015, 11:40:43 PM by jimmykx250 »
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Offline S Warne

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Re: Dry mead with SG 1.050???
« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2015, 12:56:07 AM »
With a completely dry mead, the SG should be more around 1.0.  I understand that it is impossible to determine my current ABV since I don't know my starting SG but that doesn't explain why my current SG is 1.050 with no sweetness to the mead. I experimented with a quart or so by adding honey thinking that it might start the yeast up again but there hasn't been any movement in 2 days. Does anyone know if this might be a pH or acid issue?

Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: Dry mead with SG 1.050???
« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2015, 08:19:22 AM »
Just asking the obvious question: did you measure with a refractometer or hydrometer? And, if you used a refractometer,  did you correct the reading with software (which would surprise me as you do not know the OG)?
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Offline S Warne

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Re: Dry mead with SG 1.050???
« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2015, 01:12:08 PM »
I used a refractometer, but I am unfamiliar with the 'software ' correction??? I usually don't measure SP at all during beer or mead brewing. Maybe I should.

Offline Stevie

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Re: Dry mead with SG 1.050???
« Reply #5 on: March 30, 2015, 01:54:53 PM »

I used a refractometer, but I am unfamiliar with the 'software ' correction??? I usually don't measure SP at all during beer or mead brewing. Maybe I should.
Without the og, a refractometer is useless. Considering your know your volume of water and honey, you can make a reasonable guess as to what your og was.

Offline homoeccentricus

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Re: Dry mead with SG 1.050???
« Reply #6 on: March 30, 2015, 02:01:35 PM »
You need a calculator like this one: http://www.northernbrewer.com/refractometer-calculator/  and, indeed, to know your OG. In any case your FG will be much lower than 1.050, which explains that you do not taste any sweetness.
Frank P.

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Offline Scot (one T)

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Re: Dry mead with SG 1.050???
« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2015, 04:02:07 PM »
My guess is that the dryness is due to your yeast choice.  Champagne yeast will chew through the vast majority of sugars leaving little to no residual sweetness.   Add potassium sorbate as per directions to prevent fermentation from restarting.....pull off apx 1 liter of must......disolve 1/2-1 pound of honey into it and back sweeten to taste.   
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Offline realbeerguy

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Re: Dry mead with SG 1.050???
« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2015, 06:49:11 PM »
10# honey/3.5 gal of water should yield a sg of around 1.092-1.100 off the top of my head.  I don't trust the refractometer calcs on FG, so take a hydrometer reading.  Your high finishing gravity could be from low pitch rate, fermenting too low for yeast strain, lack of nutrients.  Champagne yeast is noted for stripping out the must.  Start with the hydrometer, then report back.
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