hist-brewing: RE:Help with brix

Dan McFeeley mcfeeley at keynet.net
Wed Feb 16 07:42:45 PST 2000

At 04:00 AM 2/16/00 -0800, bjm10 at cornell.edu wrote:
>So it all comes down to "Honey is 78% sugar."--am I right?

Almost.  "Honey is 78% sugar" says that 78% of everything, water included,
is sugar, which doesn't describe the sugar content of honey as Brix well.  

Brix is a measure of the percent solid material to the water content,
usually in grams solid matter per 100 ml water.  For honey, approx. 78%
of the solid matter, i.e., 78% of the Brix reading, is going to be sugar.
That's why, when substituting honey for sugar, you need a larger amount
of honey in order to get the equivalent amount of sugar in the recipe.

It's important to remember that the stuff making up the composition of
honey varies with the floral source.  Sugar content is going to be
different for different honeys, with 78% as a good ballpark figure for
average sugar content.  As a result, your original gravity is going to be
different from the reading used in the recipe using sugar.  

I've seen a conversion figure of one pound honey for every .75 pounds of
sugar -- this is a good figure to work with but because of the variance
in sugar content according to the type of honey used, the must needs to
be checked with a hydrometer to be sure the honey used for the recipe
got you close to what you wanted.

Sorry -- I should have been more detailed in my first post.  Hope this
is more helpful!

Dan McFeeley
mcfeeley at keynet.net

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