Saturday, January 17, 2015

mead brew 1st try started, alcohol calculation

Simpler recipe, 5 gallons:
In 2 gallon pot mix the following and bring to 180 F and then let cools:
5 pounds honey ($15)
4 pounds cane sugar
6 cans orange juice (1/2 pound sugar per can)  ($15)
1 can grape juice
optional: thin-slice orange peels from 5 oranges, 5 cloves, 2 TBLS cinnamon, 1 ounce hops (bacteria prevention), near-boil for 15 minutes

Let cool to 120 F then add to 5 gallon bucket that already has 3 gallons and 2 tsp yeast nutrient.

EC-1118 yeast
Fermentation finished in 5 days.
Bottle after 10 days.

Alcohol content [5 lb honey/2+(7.5 lb sugar)/1.5]/5 gallons * 10% = 15%

Trying to brew a mead. Recipe:

5 gallons total

Honey is acidic which can help yeast and prevent bacteria.  This may have too much raw sugars and not enough honey which may allow bacteria to grow, since I'm not using hops or sulfites and did not heat most of the water (charcoal filter) and simply add 0.7 lb sugar at the end. The Clorox I used for sterilizing was unknowingly only 2% instead of 5% and I diluted it a lot, but it still should have been plenty for the bucket and lid as I kept them wet.

1+ gallon water in 2 gallon pot heat to 170 F or higher

8 pounds honey (2 pounds per gallon for 10% alcohol)
3 pounds dextrose (for fast start)  (1.5 pounds per gallon for 10% alcohol)
2 pound cane sugar (syrup solids added)
6 cloves
1 TBLS cinnamon (do 2 next time)
1 cinnamon stick, broken in 5 pieces
2 oranges, squeezed into mash, cut in about 20, 1 mm thick trips added to mash.
1 big lemon, same strips as above

I forgot to use hops as a way to prevent bacterial growth, but I possibly added enough sugar for 18%, so it may be sweet.

All the above brought to 200 F, then allowed to cool, covered. Took 2 or 3 hours to cool.

2 cans frozen orange juice, added after wort has cooled to below 140 (for this process).

2 TBLS yeast nutrient and 3 gallon filtered water added in 5 gallon bucket.

Lalvin 71B-1122 in 2 oz 104 F water for 20 minutes (2 oz cools at the right rate). Added some dextrose to this and was foamy at end. This is an expensive yeast ($5) because it minimizes acids. Rapid starting but moderate overall. 14% max alcohol. A paper indicates an expected S-curve for fermentation starting steeply down from 24 to 72 hours, and finishing at 84 hours (3.5 days) for fructose, glucose, and malic acid for several types of yeast, including this one. But maybe there are better yeast to use for citrus because Malic is the dominant acid in apples, peaches, pears, watermelon, and bananas.  The starting with 20% sugar (10% alcohol by 2 sugar = 1 alcohol estimate) and 0.6% malic acid (both in g/L). This resulted in 12% alcohol. They mixed every 12 hours, possibly only for sampling purposes. EC-1118 is more common but does not decrease acids. D47 is also used. 

Used 20:1 water-bleach mixture for sanitizing bucket, utensils, and air lock.

Make sure wort is less than 86 F before inoculating.

2 gallon pot was completely full. Wort was 130 F when added in 5 gal bucket with yeast nutrient, 2 cans of orange juice concentrate , and 0.7 lb dextrose added late (but included in 3 pounds above).  It was 75 F after finishing 3 gallons were added, when yeast was added.

Sugar calculation: 0.7*8 lbs honey+0.5 lb/can*2 cans frozen juice+5 lb sugar = 11.5 lb sugar

11.5 lb /2 = 6.25 lb alcohol
5 gallons * 8 lb/gal = 40 pounds

6.25/40 = 15.6% alcohol max. (this yeast gives 14% max, so it's moderate sweet, not dry)

But a paper indicated I'm 20% too low on my alcohol content. Maybe I'm doing it on weight basis and 20% more is normal volume basis.

5 gallon bucket lid pretty much touched top at 5 gallon, so needed to jury-rig the air lock to not dip into liquid. 

Yeast was added 11:30 am 11/7/2015.
1 small bubble every 30 seconds 30 minutes later.
1 good bubble every 20 seconds 6 hours later
1 good bubble every second 18 hours later

fast fermenting, high alcohol yeast:
V1116 (K1)
uvaferm 43

4th day added 2 gallons with 1 can orange juice 1 can grape and 1 oz hops.   Fermentation bubbles boomed again, mostly due to more oxygen or maybe the dilution. It was very sweet at this time, but after two more days of the intense bubbling starting again, it was very alcoholic.

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