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Author Topic: Session Mead  (Read 2408 times)

Offline pete b

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #15 on: March 07, 2023, 05:00:57 pm »
IMHO use a beer yeast.

i tried a session mead with what i discovered was an INCREDIBLE quality honey (thistle btw) a year ago. i used i believe 71b, hit about 5% ABV. wanted it crystal clear so listened to a wineshop guy's advice  ::) and hit it with chitosan+kietelsol (not even the full things of each since i thought "this has to be overkill?") and cleared it so well it never carbed in the bottle.

i just realized you may be kegging, so that point may be moot.

but in any case give it a shot, just go for beer yeast and what you're familiar with. you could definitely get it ready in 4 months, that joes ancient mead recipe crap, letting it sit for a year is just fuddle duddle lore. hit it with yeast supplement additions at 24 and 72 hours and treat it like a beer. one month
Why beer yeast? Have you tried it yet yourself?

sorry, missed this reply. why beer yeast? this is personal preference and some objective stats, imho the wine yeast just didn't lend a good character or body to the mead, and a long time clearing and i recall at that time blaming the wine yeast, thinking it would all have been better if i just used more familiar beer yeast. checked my notes.txt on that brew and dont see anything to help clarify that, but yeah. consider beer yeast unless you think theres a reason not to consider it? looks like i used my low-med hardness tap water for it, but yeah also consider pH and aim to give it a bite, rather than leave it flabby.
I think this is worth considering if I do a fair amount of experimenting with session meads. I like ale yeast for cider. For these first couple I think I am going to stick with the wine yeasts that I am so familiar with.
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Offline jeffy

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #16 on: March 07, 2023, 07:48:21 pm »
IMHO use a beer yeast.

i tried a session mead with what i discovered was an INCREDIBLE quality honey (thistle btw) a year ago. i used i believe 71b, hit about 5% ABV. wanted it crystal clear so listened to a wineshop guy's advice  ::) and hit it with chitosan+kietelsol (not even the full things of each since i thought "this has to be overkill?") and cleared it so well it never carbed in the bottle.

i just realized you may be kegging, so that point may be moot.

but in any case give it a shot, just go for beer yeast and what you're familiar with. you could definitely get it ready in 4 months, that joes ancient mead recipe crap, letting it sit for a year is just fuddle duddle lore. hit it with yeast supplement additions at 24 and 72 hours and treat it like a beer. one month
Why beer yeast? Have you tried it yet yourself?

sorry, missed this reply. why beer yeast? this is personal preference and some objective stats, imho the wine yeast just didn't lend a good character or body to the mead, and a long time clearing and i recall at that time blaming the wine yeast, thinking it would all have been better if i just used more familiar beer yeast. checked my notes.txt on that brew and dont see anything to help clarify that, but yeah. consider beer yeast unless you think theres a reason not to consider it? looks like i used my low-med hardness tap water for it, but yeah also consider pH and aim to give it a bite, rather than leave it flabby.
I have never used a mead yeast in my meads. Always Ale yeast. I feel it has some sort of residual flavor that mead yeast lacks.
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
Homebrewing since 1990
AHA member since 1991, now a lifetime member
BJCP judge since 1995

Offline pete b

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #17 on: March 09, 2023, 05:28:06 am »
I have never that I can remember used specifically a mead yeast but rather several wine yeasts. If I have enough ingredients I may do a split batch with wine and ale yeast.
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #18 on: March 14, 2023, 01:53:40 am »
I have never that I can remember used specifically a mead yeast but rather several wine yeasts. If I have enough ingredients I may do a split batch with wine and ale yeast.
Same here. I've settled on 71B for berry and stonefruit meads and D47 or Cote de Blancs for ciders and cysers. I think wine yeasts do a good job at enhancing flavors and aromas from fruit. That being said, I have heard good results from kviek strains in meads (there is a recent Basic Brewing episode using Lallemand Voss for some currant meads), and I have considered trying dry Lutra in my next mead.

Keep us posted if you test it out!
Eric B.

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Offline pete b

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #19 on: September 23, 2023, 05:54:09 am »
I finally got around to this, the garden and other things kept me too busy but I had sometime off this week and needed to get the fruit out of the freezer.
I have 5 gallon batches of peach with 15 pounds of peaches and mixed berry (blueberry, elderberry, raspberry). They are both right about 6% P,A. I used 71B. I think that I am going to transfer to carboys with some supercleer for 2-3 weeks then cold crash and transfer to kegs, adding any acid/tannin t needs and possibly back sweetening.
« Last Edit: September 23, 2023, 05:56:00 am by pete b »
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Offline pete b

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #20 on: October 07, 2023, 06:19:53 am »
I kegged these the other day and they are carbing up.
I decided to go as simple as possible and just added super clear in the fermenter and transferred to kegs the next day. I added a little acid blend and tannin to the peach. I didn’t backsweeten either. We tasted last night and the flavor profiles were great. I think they will be very enjoyable when fully carbed.
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #21 on: October 09, 2023, 07:19:06 am »
I kegged these the other day and they are carbing up.
I decided to go as simple as possible and just added super clear in the fermenter and transferred to kegs the next day. I added a little acid blend and tannin to the peach. I didn’t backsweeten either. We tasted last night and the flavor profiles were great. I think they will be very enjoyable when fully carbed.
Sounds delicious! What was your FG on these? I can picture a dry carbonated melomel drinking kind of like a hard seltzer.
Eric B.

Finally got around to starting a homebrewing blog: The Hop Whisperer

Offline pete b

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #22 on: October 09, 2023, 10:20:01 am »
I kegged these the other day and they are carbing up.
I decided to go as simple as possible and just added super clear in the fermenter and transferred to kegs the next day. I added a little acid blend and tannin to the peach. I didn’t backsweeten either. We tasted last night and the flavor profiles were great. I think they will be very enjoyable when fully carbed.
Sounds delicious! What was your FG on these? I can picture a dry carbonated melomel drinking kind of like a hard seltzer.
Both were 1.000.
I haven't had enough hard seltzer to say but I feel there is a touch more body in these. I sampled each close to fully carbed yesterday. I like the berry as is, the peach flavor is more subtle than I hoped and even though I thought I was very light with the acid blend I would go even less.
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Offline pete b

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #23 on: October 09, 2023, 02:09:15 pm »
I think a closer comparison to how it drinks is cider rather than seltzer.
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Offline pete b

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #24 on: January 01, 2024, 08:28:15 am »
I recently made two more session meads at 6%abv. Traditional and pyment (wild grape). We are really enjoying both and surprised at how satisfying the body and flavor are.

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« Last Edit: January 01, 2024, 08:33:12 am by pete b »
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Offline Megary

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #25 on: January 01, 2024, 09:13:10 am »
I recently made two more session meads at 6%abv. Traditional and pyment (wild grape). We are really enjoying both and surprised at how satisfying the body and flavor are.

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I’m not a big mead drinker, but I might be if I had those nearby.  They look great!

Offline fredthecat

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #26 on: January 01, 2024, 10:41:41 am »
I recently made two more session meads at 6%abv. Traditional and pyment (wild grape). We are really enjoying both and surprised at how satisfying the body and flavor are.

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@ing you again here pete, but i could for sure see making a session mead again some day. i just had a technical failure with mine (failure to carbonate due to overfining). i also felt like even if mine was carbonated there would be a lot of room to dial it in. any thoughts on water profile or additional flavours?

Offline pete b

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #27 on: January 01, 2024, 11:48:54 am »
I recently made two more session meads at 6%abv. Traditional and pyment (wild grape). We are really enjoying both and surprised at how satisfying the body and flavor are.

Sent from my SM-G960U1 using Tapatalk

@ing you again here pete, but i could for sure see making a session mead again some day. i just had a technical failure with mine (failure to carbonate due to overfining). i also felt like even if mine was carbonated there would be a lot of room to dial it in. any thoughts on water profile or additional flavours?
As far as water profile goes I don't do anything with my softened well water for mead like I do for beer. Because it goes through a softening filtration system it's pretty light in minerals with maybe 55ppm sodium and 75 sulfates standing out in my mind. As far as additional flavors go I think you mean adjusting for acidity or backsweetening vs different flavors such as berries or fruit. I don't backsweeten due to personal tasts. These get fermented to about 1.000 and are dry but not as dry as the driest ciders. Honey always seems to leave flavor and mouthfeel despite being completely fermentable. I do taste and sometimes add a little acid blend and/or tannin at kegging.
FWIW the flavors of session mead I have made tus far are mixed berry, peach, grape, and plain honey.
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Offline brewthru

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #28 on: January 02, 2024, 03:24:37 pm »
IMO, very helpful topic! Was wondering about a "session" mead as I've had enough of the "high octane" versions.

Offline pete b

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Re: Session Mead
« Reply #29 on: January 03, 2024, 07:29:55 am »
IMO, very helpful topic! Was wondering about a "session" mead as I've had enough of the "high octane" versions.
Yea, it is something that hadn't been on my radar until the last year or two. I had always had mead compartmentalized in my mind as "wine" and only drank it when with meals or when I was in the mood for wine. It drinks like cider and is great to have on tap. It also is a cinch to make and on the same time frame as beer as opposed to the months for wine strength mead. FWIW its lower in calories and carbs than a similar abv beer and therefore less filling.
I got a lot of encourangement and advice from Matt Chrispen, who has been involved in meaderies in Texas and is sometimes on this forum. He was especially helpful with my confidence that it could be fully clear and mature very quickly.
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