mead and grape tannin

My first batch of mead is a off tasting because I tried a more natural approach of using tea. I think I over did it by using one cup of strong steeped tea in one gallon. I think I can actually taste the tea which I don't consider nice with the mead. I'm ready to give up my natural kick and switch to grape tannin.
Anyone know about the proper amount of grape tannin in a gallon of mead and whether you really need the tannin to offset the honey? I'm fermenting dry btw.
Don
Reply to
Don S
When Ever I make Mead I don't use any tanin at all.
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Reply to
Graeme
On 2/7/04 7:48 PM, in article
Well, generally about 1/4 tsp per gallon is typically called for in most wine recipes that specify tannin be added. Sometimes less.
Reply to
Greg Cook
Greg, You seem to do some/alot of mead, what are your favourites? I tried my first about a year ago. It has too much tea flavour and is also a bit weak. I'm thinking about using fruit in place of water in order to strengthen it up so I was going to consider adding some fruit juice such as mango or peach.
Do you add 1/4 tsp per gallon of grape tannin to nearly all of your meads? How do you decide if to add?
Don
Reply to
Don S
On 2/9/04 6:29 AM, in article
I will generally add 1/4 tsp per gallon of tannin to anything I make that doesn't have much tannin naturally in the fruit. At this level, you can't really taste the astringency but I think it does add something to the mouth feel. I do like meads. I made a couple early on that were really nice - one with fresh mango fruit and one with blueberries. I like my cranberry melomel very much. All of those had a bit of residual sweetness added back, so they were off dry. I have an orange melomel going now that is dry and really tastes good. Can't wait for this one! I think it will be one of my better honey wines. By the way, I made it using frozen orange concentrate. It fermented well and cleared beautifully by itself. I really need to get my recent wine logs put on-line. One of these days real soon.
Reply to
Greg Cook
Greg, Since I don't want to fool around with sorbate at this point I'd like to stick with fermenting dry. What was your favourite dry melomel other than the orange which isn't finished? Do you have the recipes online as well?
Don
Reply to
Don S
Greg, Along the same lines another question came to me on the way home. What about acid blend or lemon juice? How do you choose when you might add one of them to a mead?
Don
Reply to
Don S
On 2/10/04 11:30 AM, in article
To be honest, I haven't made that many dry melomels. The one apricot melomel was pretty good, but I used sulfured dried apricots, and it had a lingering sulfur taste that spoiled it. One of the best dry honey wines I have tasted was made by a winery in North Dakota (Pointe of View Winery). They added dried elderflowers (just a bit) and aged it in oak barrels. It has to be the nicest dry mead ever.
My older logs/recipes are on-line, but I don't have the 2003 and 2004 bottlings put up yet.
Reply to
Greg Cook
On 2/10/04 7:50 PM, in article
I will always add some acid blend or lemon juice. First, because I like my wines tart, and second, most fruits at the levels we are adding them, don't provide enough acid. If you have an acid testing kit, that is the best way to know if you need acid and approximately how much. If you are following basic wine recipes for the amount of acid, it may be too much. Honey tends to have a significant amount of acid in it. I just checked my orange melomel log and I did add 8 tsp of tartaric acid to it for 5 gallons. (I copied my log below). One thing about honey is the acid profiles tend to be quite different than other wines. There is often less buffering from other dissolved salts and pH can swing a lot during fermentation. This is the cause of a lot of the stuck fermentations that is observed with meads. Some of the acids in honey tend to get metabolized by the yeast leading to too low acid. Usually with fruits added, this is less of a problem because there's more "stuff" there. Mead is a complicated beast as acids go. If all else fails, go by the taste! If it stops fermenting, add a little acid.
Reply to
Greg Cook
Greg, Thanks for all of your replies, I appreciate the informative answers. I think I'll be starting another mead this weekend and am going to stay away from the tea and go with slightly less than 1/4 tsp of grape tannin per gallon. The reply on mead acid profiles had some items I hadn't thought about. Thanks again.
Don
Reply to
Don S

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