HOMEBREW Digest #16 Mon 28 November 1988

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		Rob Gardner, Digest Coordinator

  Blueberry mead (Jonathan Corbet)

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---------------------------------------------------------------------- Date: 28 Nov 88 20:29:40 MST (Mon) From: gaia!jon at handies.ucar.edu (Jonathan Corbet) Subject: Blueberry mead Ye Olde Batte says: RE: the question last week about blueberry mead. Be prepared for sweetness. Almost all fruit meads are "dessert wine" sweetness. I really have to say that this does not jive with my experience. The first blueberry mead I ever made (entitled BlueBelly Mead, in honor of a minor spill which discolored my brewing partner's torso), was fairly sweet; it had a final gravity of about 1.020 -- quite high for a mead. The partially fermented nature of the drink became apparent when we started opening the bottles; the pressure was quite high. Nonetheless, it was amazingly good stuff. I have one last bottle hidden away for some very special occasion. I have done two more blueberry meads since then, and they have both come out quite dry. We even made a special effort to get the sweet effect on the last one, to no avail. All of the other fruit/berry meads I have ever made (apple, raspberry (yum!), peach, nectarine, crabapple (sour!) and cranberry) have all turned out to be dry meads. Fortunately, I like them that way... I don't have the blueberry mead recipe handy, but, as far as I can remember, it goes something like this (6.5 gal batch): 7-10 lbs fresh blueberries. Buy them in mid-to-late summer when they are cheap. 1-2 lbs corn sugar, to help the fermentation along. An ounce or so of hops; we usually use cascades. 10 lbs (or so) of honey. I prefer the darker, wildflower honeys, despite the fact that others recommend using the lightest honey possible. I have always taken Papazian's advice (try his mead sometime, and you'll listen to him too) and boiled the honey, sugar, and hops for at least an hour. Boiling the honey seems to be out of favor on this list; I may try it without boiling sometime. Clean the blueberries, and mash them up real good. Put the must, mashed berries, and sufficient water into the primary fermenter; pitch with champagne yeast. Strain out the berries after roughly a week, and rack to the secondary. Leave in the secondary for a month or so; bottle with 1.5 cup or so of corn sugar, and maybe some lemon grass tea. Wait 6mos - 1 year, and enjoy! Jonathan Corbet {husc6 | rutgers | ames | gatech}!ncar!gaia!jon {uunet | ucbvax | allegra | cbosgd}!nbires!gaia!jon Return to table of contents
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