A Tiger Barn Cattery Wine Recipe
This a nice variation in colour for a honey mead recipe, the flavour is still honey based, but has a warmer colour and flavour that looks great in the bottle.
First things first: Honey has no natural nutrients so needs a lot of yeast nutrients.
Honey doesn't ferment as fast as sugar so a little more patience might be needed.
When I was a young teenager in the South West of England getting hold of scrumpy or Mead was the most enjoyable use for alcohol. Back then, scrumpy was rough, usually flavoured with dead rat and Mead Wine was thick, sweet and liqueur-like ... and they both worked well on the tongue and senses.
However, I've not been able to recreate either (yet), but this is a Honey Mead Recipe that works. - Strictly speaking, adding Blackberries makes this mead a Melomel.
3 Lbs of Honey (1362 gms)
4 pints of water, 2 boiled, 2 cold
1Lb of crushed Blackberries
Juice of one lemon or 1 tsp Citric Acid
A strong cup of tea for tannin
2-3 tsp of TronOzymol yeast nutrient
Gervin Wine Yeast #1 Strain GV1
When topping this Mead Wine up use a hydrometer. Only add as much honey water as you need to reach an SG that will drop around 95 points in total.
There's something missing in the notes, like a page from the end of all the meads where between going back into the airing cupboard at SG: 1.010 and being bottled in 2011. The gist is that someone said to add the honey water at the end to keep it sweet before you bottle it and you keep the honey flavour. What they forgot to say was that the bottles explode as the honey you just added ferments. In fact, if you follow their advice the Mead Pop their corks, spilling sticky honey wine all over the walls. :)
Anyway, to cut a long story short, all three meads were removed from the bottle after they exploded, made up with appropriate levels of honey water and left to ferment to dryness before being rebottled and stored, but the record ends between the airing cupboard and the first bottling.
I bought this honey from the local beekeeper, Gordon. His bees were always licking our flowers and pollinating everything in sight so it's the perfect honey to use ... something that you put a little of yourself into. I gave him and his wife a bottle of each Mead to say 'Thanks'.
From my notes:
Saturday 10th December 2010
Boiled 2 pints of water
Added two pints of cold water
Added 3 Lb's Honey (1362 gms)
Added 1Lb crushed Blackberries
Added 2 teabags
Strained the Mead must into a Demijohn alternating with cold water until the demijohn was filled to the shoulder.
Left to cool for 1 hour outside
Juice of one lemon
1 tsp Citric Acid
Activated 1 tsp of yeast mixed with 1/2 tsp of TronOzymol
Gervin Wine Yeast #1
Added yeast to must
Added 1/2 tsp Youngs Dried Yeast
Added 2 tsp of TronOzymol
Wednesday 29th December 2010
Saturday 8th January 2011
Racked off the sludge
Alcohol calculation: (1.076-1.001) / 7.4 = 10.1%
Topped up with honey water and placed back in the airing cupboard
Bottled: 12th February 2011 - 5 x bottles + 1 for Gordon
Drinkable: June 2011