Poll

Do you boil, or bring your must up to sanitizing temperatures for your mead making, or do you simply add everything together at room temperature?

I boil
1 (3.6%)
I bring the temps up to sanitizing levels
5 (17.9%)
I use enough heat to help make things flow and stir together
16 (57.1%)
I do not use heat
6 (21.4%)

Total Members Voted: 28

Voting closed: December 12, 2009, 11:31:00 AM

Author Topic: Heat or no heat  (Read 19774 times)

Offline Crispy275

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Heat or no heat
« on: November 12, 2009, 10:02:54 AM »
A simple question - do you use heat in making your mead or not?
Chris P. Frey, aka "Crispy"
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Offline beerocd

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #1 on: November 12, 2009, 10:29:22 AM »
Some heat - just to make it flow better. Since I don't get anywhere near your other two choices I guess I'm NO HEAT.

-OCD
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Offline akr71

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #2 on: November 12, 2009, 11:01:53 AM »
Some heat - just to make it flow better. Since I don't get anywhere near your other two choices I guess I'm NO HEAT.

-OCD

+1 the honey I get is solid, so some heat to get it out of the bucket and hot water to get it to dissolve easier, but no boiling.
Andy

Amherst, NS - Canada

Offline realbeerguy

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #3 on: November 12, 2009, 12:50:37 PM »
NO HEAT!

Bucket, water, honey.  Stir like hell.  If I need to get the last bit of honey out of the container, use a sanitzed spatula.  I will rinse the last bit out with some heated water, but the volume does not appreciably raise the temperature of the must.
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Offline ndcube

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2009, 07:53:24 AM »
Only heat I use is a warm water bath for flow.

Offline loopy

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #5 on: November 13, 2009, 12:28:23 PM »
no heat, but I sometimes put the honey in the window sill for a few hours to let it warm up.  putting it in the sink with warm water around the outside of the container would be the same. 

Offline 1vertical

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #6 on: November 13, 2009, 07:43:36 PM »
So far, I have tried to bring it up to Pasteurization temps.  There is a school of thought on not heating, but IMO fermentation is
all about creating the correct environment for the Yeast to have optimum conditions.  To me, Pasteurization insures that the
competing organisms that MAY be present in the mix, are nullified. Another reason that reinforces my thinking on this is my
pocket book. The price of the ingredients and production labor and cleanup are weighty enough that to have a contaminated batch would be too costly IMO.  So for me, insurance, yes please.....
A fine is a tax for doing wrong. A tax is a fine for doing well.

Offline ted

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #7 on: November 14, 2009, 09:14:24 PM »
In the past I have heated to sanitize, but I no longer use any heat. I just don't see any reason to anymore.
I'm not a complete idiot, some parts are missing.

Offline Brewdogz

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #8 on: November 19, 2009, 11:17:08 AM »
1vertical - I did what you are doing for my first two batches for the same reasons.  Since then I've been doing no heat method for about the next 150 batches.  No problems what so ever.

On the other hand, if I have a batch of fruit that I believe to be suspect (visible signs of mold and rust) I have been known to sulfite the must for a day befor I pitch yeast.  I rarely do this because I'm not a fan of sulfiting.
Curt Stock
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Lots of beers brewing
Lots of mead being made

Offline 1vertical

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #9 on: November 19, 2009, 11:28:34 AM »
Looks at poll results....scratches head....says notes are being taken  :-\
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Offline Brewdogz

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2009, 11:41:09 AM »
I should make another note: I know a few people who have been making mead for decades.  They very gently boil there must for 15 minutes or so, skim all the wax, bugs and other stuff that float to the top.  The meads they make are extremely good medal winning beverages. 

In your notes make sure to list that there are many different ways to make great mead.  You just need to figure out what works best for you and what you are most comfortable with.

And don;t forget to practice! ;)
Curt Stock
Saint Paul Homebrewers Club
Lots of beers brewing
Lots of mead being made

Offline lonnie mac

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2009, 03:29:14 PM »
So far, I have tried to bring it up to Pasteurization temps.  There is a school of thought on not heating, but IMO fermentation is
all about creating the correct environment for the Yeast to have optimum conditions.  To me, Pasteurization insures that the
competing organisms that MAY be present in the mix, are nullified. Another reason that reinforces my thinking on this is my
pocket book. The price of the ingredients and production labor and cleanup are weighty enough that to have a contaminated batch would be too costly IMO.  So for me, insurance, yes please.....

I am kinda with ya on this. I have done it with no heat, but I have done several 10 gal meads. Heck, that last ABC I did dang near broke me! I don't remember how much money I had in that thing! So usually I will bring things up to sanitizing temps for the sake of piece of mind I guess...

The only infection I did have was a no heat, but I wont attribute it to that. I found that I had an infected racking cane. I pasteurized it and let it cool on it's own and bottled... It went on to win BOS at KCBM.

Offline wilypig

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #12 on: November 20, 2009, 08:08:26 AM »
Honey is does not have enough water to support bacterial contamination. That is why it has been used for centuries as a poltice on infected wounds. Wild yeast will survive in a type of suspended animation waiting for the right conditions to do there thing. I am a bit of a goofy historical nut about my mead. I use no heat and generally try to get the local yeast to do the job for me. I have made several meads and like ciders I find that the local yeast do a great job of fermenting these. I do however believe in the 96 hour nutrient schedule for ensuring proper fermentation. I will harvest my cider yeast for use on meads each year. I also use this yeast for making at least one beer a year, with very interesting result. To each his/her own, if it works for you then it is good. I chose a path many hills, valleys and dark blind curves.
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Offline euge

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #13 on: March 30, 2010, 12:26:44 AM »
I made two five gallon batches of mead per the Papazian book's instruction waaay back in the early 90's.

Boiled the crap out of them per the recipe and aged the carboys for six months. Two different parties cleaned out the uncarbonated mead and left me with sticky floors. It was fantastic social lubricant...

Anyway, the end product was about 19% both times.


The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline bluefoxicy

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Re: Heat or no heat
« Reply #14 on: July 24, 2010, 06:48:05 PM »
Boiling will drive out some volatile aromatic compounds and alter some proteins or sugars, altering the mouthfeel of the mead.

Boiling will also lead to a clearer mead.