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Beer Style: Other Fruit Melomel
Recipe Type: other
Yield: 5 US gallons
Well, I finally took the plunge. On Saturday I made an apricot melomel, my first attempt at a mead (although I've made beer before). I basically used Papazian's "Barkshack Ginger Mead" recipe, with some variations.
Original Gravity: 1.052
Recipe Type: other
Yield: 5.00 US Gallons
Heated 2.5 gal. of water, added all ingredients up to the fruit. Brought slowly to 210 degrees F., skimming off the foam (and much of the ginger).
Washed, pitted, and "juiced" the aprocits to produce 1 1/2 quarts of delicious juice - added to hot must and turned off the heat for about 1/2 hour. Temperature was 190 degrees after adding fruit - dropped to about 180 degrees. Ran the must through my (new counterflow) wort chiller - in 15 minutes brought the temperature down to 80 degrees - and into 7 gallon glass carboy. Pitched yeast and fit the carboy with a fermentation lock.
The must looks like raw apple cider at this point - cloudy and orangy/brown. I drank the must used for the gravity sample, and had a hard time stopping myself from sampling more - it was sweet, with a strong tartness of ripe apricots and undercurrents of ginger complimenting it nicely - tastes much better than beer wort! I was worried about too little fruit or too much ginger, but it seems very well balanced at this point - I hope the finished product keeps the same blend of tastes.
Next morning: vigorous fermentation (3-5 bubbles/second) and about 1/2 inch of "kreusen" on the must. The smell is heavenly - like concentrated apricots, a little bit yeaste. I plan on racking to a secondary after a week, at which time I'll take another sample for gravity and tasting.
Source: Mike Lindner