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To keep or not to keep ??

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  • To keep or not to keep ??

    Made a mead, with raspberry's back in 2009, maybe 2010. All went well, I think it fermented to a fairly high amount of alcohol, as best I recall 18-18.5%

    Since then it had been a "problem".
    First it dropped a fuzzy deposit after more then a year of being clear, posted somewhere here.
    Then I looked and it was dark, as in very dark, seems to be getting darker as well.
    It had been racked and filtered more then once.
    Just filtered it today for what I think is the third time (maybe fourth) as I could not see a bright LED torch shone through the DJ. Possibly my fault for this needing doing.

    The DJ it had come from has a deposit on the glass up to where the mead has sat, 2 rinses with hot water has failed to budge this and so it will get a DJ brush pushed inside to remove it. Say this because the mead had only been in the DJ for 3 months. So a short time to adhere itself to the glass. Could this be tanin?

    A taste of the mead shows it to be harsh but not off (I think), so not at all drinkable after 3 years.

    Presently it is "clear" but still very dark, the torch shone through can be seen and there is no cloudyness.

    Question is what do I do with it: Give up and pour away or cork the DJ and leave for I suspect 5 years at least.

  • #2
    If you don't need the DJ I'd keep hold of the mead. What have you got to lose? You could create a legend!

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    • #3
      I think keep - if John see's the thread he would be able to give you best advice
      Gluten free, caffeine free, dairy free, fat free you gotta love this red wine diet!

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      • #4
        After 3 years, I would bin it. Especially if, as you say, it's "not at all drinkable."

        Some things simply don't improve with age and it sounds as if this batch may have been on the wrong track from the start.
        Steve

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        • #5
          ... The DJ it had come from has a deposit on the glass up to where the mead has sat, 2 rinses with hot water has failed to budge ..
          Use a caustic solution (washing soda) it is a truly brilliant cleaner for winemaking getting filth off glassware. Do not use on aluminium

          ... A taste of the mead shows it to be harsh but not off (I think), so not at all drinkable after 3 years...
          Was it a mouth puckering taste ? dry but not acidic ? - this might well be tannin.

          A mate of mine maintains anything tastes better with a splash of Coke - I'm not sure this holds true but it might be worth trying !!

          My inner Yorkshireman doesn't like the thought of throwing it away .............
          Gluten free, caffeine free, dairy free, fat free you gotta love this red wine diet!

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          • #6
            If you've got the DJ's then I'd say keep it.

            Raspberries are strange things. The flavour we know and enjoy is the base fruit taste, yet when the sugars have been fermented out, they become a very acidic, dominant flavour. Yes the aroma is often still there, but the taste that you're familiar with can disappear completely - which the old grey matter doesn't follow because the ability to taste is a mix of the actual taste and the aroma.

            With raspberry flavoured drinks, I find it better if it's got some semblance of sweetness to it.

            Have you tested the numbers ? Because as above, I usually sweeten my meads to "medium" i.e. the 1.010-1.015 area, which is where I prefer them. Not too sweet as to be cloyingly sweet, but certainly not dry. As dry meads can indeed take many years to become good (the late Brother Adam, would age his traditionals for about 7 years apparently).

            Hence is the taste sweet, dry, medium ? As some "faults" can be masked with extra sweetness (stabilise and then back sweeten with a nice tasting honey). Then if the honey should cause a haze (protein I understand), it can usually be bashed down with finings.

            I've got a couple that keep "changing" i.e. they are clear, then seem to drop more sediment, often "fluffy" looking, which seems to be tannins. Whether this is the action of acids on tannins, I don't know.

            Of course, if you have filtration, then you can always bang it through on the finest level you have, as that would take out a lot of the finer sedimentary materials, some of the pigmentation and possibly some of the flavours (though that sounds like it might be worth the effort).

            I'd have thought that by now, any "alcohol hot" type harshness would have mellowed, though there's the possibility that if the yeast used created some fusels (a bit like D47 being fermented above 70F/21C) they may need much longer to mellow - if they ever do.

            Irrespective of that lot, I'd still keep it and see how it goes!
            Women will never be equal to men until they can walk down the street with a bald head and a beer gut, and still think they are sexy.

            Some blog ramblings

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