hist-brewing: Mead Sanitation Update 3/19/00

Jerry Harder mastergoodwine at alltel.net
Sun Mar 19 21:56:55 PST 2000

The following Data was collected after 2 weeks fermentation:

NOTE 1: the Brix is not accurate because the refractive index of
alcolhol + water is not the same as straight sugar water mix.
I hope to develop a correlation for monitoring purposes
because it is so much easier to take a refractometer reading
than a hydrometer one- all you need is a drop.

NOTE 2:  Sometimes I give two pH readings like 2.92/3.00
For some reason the pH of a 15-20ml sample is usually smaller
than say a 100 ml sample.  15 ml is my standard, but with
doing the FAN test it's easy to get the second, I just have to
remember.  If there is only 1 number it is of the 15 ml sample.

6.5 gallon, pasteurized. cuvee yeast
SG 1.016
pH 3.14/3.16
FAN 109.2
Brix 11.4
TA 0.32%

No sanitation,  Champagne Yeast
SG 1.032
pH 3.03/3.05
FAN 100.8
Brix 13.0
TA 0.315%

Boiled Champagne Yeast
SG 1.039
pH 2.89/2.90
FAN 35.0
Brix 14.2
TA 0.33%

Pasteurized -Set aside for aldehyde binding test
Champagne Yeast
SG 1.036
pH 3.19 / 3.18
FAN 109.2
Brix 14.2
TA 0.305%

Pasteurized Champagne Yeast
SG 1.034
pH 3.08/3.10
FAN 99.4
Brix 14.2
TA 0.295%

Pasteurized with Fermaid Champagne Yeast
SG 1.012
pH 3.61 / 3.62
FAN 85.4
Brix 11.0
TA 0.32%

Distilled water no sanitation, Amsterdam Lager yeast
SG 1.076
pH 4.52 / 4.52
FAN 235.2
Brix 19.8
TA 0.17
The extra yeast seems to have done the trick.

Tap water pasteurized, Amsterdam Lager yeast
SG 1.096
pH 4.86/4.87
FAN 310.8
Brix 22.8
TA 0.19%
The extra yeast didn't do much here.

SO2 and acid added Champagne Yeast
SG 1.044
pH 2.92/2.92
FAN 142.8
Brix 15.0
TA 0.96%
SO2 @ 10 ppm Ripper method =
about 0.8ppm molecular

Weight until pH drops and add SO2 Champagne Yeast
SG 1.032
pH 3.05/3.06
FAN 84.0
Brix 13.0
TA 0.34
Yeast was not killed.  Fermentation moving right along.

An extra point from a Jan 1992 experiment on Red Star
Champagne Yeast, Starting gravity 1.122, orginal numbers
unknown.  Has vinigar off flavor.

SG 1.056
Brix 19.4
pH 3.23/3.22
FAN 21
TA 0.375%

Volatile acidity test gives nonvolatile acid at 0.255%
confirming vinegar infection.
This wine although a stuck ferment has been
stable for 8 years.  The FAN on other batches such
as those below is lower an lower brix, in accordance
with what literature says regarding yeast being unable
to use FAN as easily at higher brix.

Two unfinished meads:

Dry End Cap Honey
SG 1.012
Brix 10.4
pH 3.56/3.57
Fan 15.4
TA 0.26%
Still active but very slow.

Sweet Version
SG 1.056
Brix 19.0
pH 3.63/3.63
FAN 47.6
TA 0.33%
Still active but very slow.

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