hist-brewing: mead -bacterial infection?

John Thomson jazzman712 at hotmail.com
Wed Nov 28 15:46:25 PST 2001

I've been brewing a batch of mead, my first, in a 6 1/2 gallon glass carboy. 
  I brewed 5 gallons of it, therefore, there's a fair amount of surface 
exposed to air.  It was airlocked, so it was only exposed to the air in it 
since I transferred it from the 5 gallon fermenting vat.  I started it back 
in the spring and transferred it to the glass carboy about a week or so 
after I originally put the honey, yeast and water together.  After a few 
months, I transferred it to a 5 gallon carboy, where it remains; not exposed 
to air.

After a few weeks in the first carboy, the batch developed a powdery 
substance on the top of it.  I realized my mistake of exposing it to that 
much air at that time.  It almost looked like a thick coat of baby powder.  
It had large bubbles from the fermenting forming under it.

At the second transfer, I tasted it.  It tasted on the whole good.  It had a 
slightly peculiar taste to it, but it didn't dominate the brew.  After 6 or 
7 months of brewing, it hasn't cleared.

My questions: is that bacterial contamination?  Will it effect the end 
product?  Is there anything I can do to repair the damage?  It seems to 
taste pleasant enough now, but will it change toward racking time?

John Thomson

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