Friday, April 25, 2014

Silence at Midnight, Blueberry Mead & Tasting Session

If you pulled me aside and asked about my Mead processes, I 'd really only have a couple of suggestions for you.  Don't boil the honey, ferment cold, de-gas and add massive amounts of nutrients.  If you continued on looking for more information, I might start making a fool of myself.  The science behind my reasoning, (which I'm sure is interesting, as I attempted to blog about here) doesn't interest me as much as drinking, now that interests me.

Opening a Mead automatically creates a experience, a moment in time. On the patio, at the park or with friends.  This is what I love about Meads.  Capturing that moment in time.  As long as I follow the rules above, I've been lucky creating a experience(s) worthy of posting here.  (Not that this blog is worthy of much)

This Mead is my 3rd in a rapid "Mead Brewing Season" that started in November late last year,  for lack of a better description.  The first two are bottle and aging properly, this one is sitting inside my keggor with Hickory Honeycombs on a picnic tap.  The original concept was to use this as a NHC blending base with "They call me Porter" entering it as a Braggot. (Which ended up placing third in the first round in Austin.) However its turned into a pretty solid Mead on it's own.

Blueberries are fast becoming my go to choice in creating fruit forward homebrews.  The tartness blends itsself well vs the overpowering sweetness most other fruits bring to meads. 

Bouquet/Aroma: Honey sweetness, backed by an acidic tartness from the blueberries.  The aroma is wonderful coming off this sample. 

Appearance:  A small amount of haze that cleared up on the second pour (don't judge me), no head as this mead is meant to be still.  Bright raspberry in color which looks fantastic in any glass.  

Flavor:  A slight tartness from the blueberry additions, adding to the sweetness of the honey.  A crispness that's welcoming.  Adding to the interesting notes on this mead.  After the blueberry tartness finishes off, it rounds into a full honey sweetness that is perfectly balanced against the tart beginning.  Finishing very dry with a residual sharp note on the top of my mouth.

Overall Impression:  This is an awesome Mead.  The level of fruit additions are spot on.  The choice of fruit is perfect.  This base needed a acidic or tart fruit to work.  This pulls it off.

Silence at Midnight/NHC Blending Base
Other Fruit Melomel
Type: All Grain Date: 14 Sep 2013
Batch Size (fermenter): 3.00 gal Brewer: Chris Lewis
Boil Size: 3.12 gal Asst Brewer:
Boil Time: 0 min Equipment: Lewys Tower
End of Boil Volume 3.12 gal Brewhouse Efficiency: 72.00 %
Final Bottling Volume: 3.00 gal Est Mash Efficiency 0.0 %
Fermentation: Ale, Single Stage Taste Rating(out of 50): 42.0
Taste Notes: Posted Above
Amt Name Type # %/IBU
1.0 pkg Lalvin 71B-1122 (Lallemand - Lalvin #71B-1122) [23.66 ml] Yeast 1 -
0.60 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Primary 9.0 days) Other 2 -
0.60 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Primary 6.0 days) Other 3 -
1.20 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Primary 3.0 days) Other 4 -
5 lbs 12.8 oz Honey (1.0 SRM) Sugar 5 100.0 %
6.50 lb Blueberries (Secondary 30.0 days) Flavor 6 -
Beer Profile
Est Original Gravity: 1.067 SG Measured Original Gravity: 1.094 SG
Est Final Gravity: 0.985 SG Measured Final Gravity: .095 then after fruit 1.008 SG
Estimated Alcohol by Vol: 10.8 % Actual Alcohol by Vol: 14.4 %
Bitterness: 0.0 IBUs Calories: 322.3 kcal/12oz
Est Color: N/A SRM
Mash Profile
Process: Single Infusion, Warm water Total Honey Weight: 5 lbs 12.8 oz
Carbonation and Storage
Carbonation Type: Keg Volumes of CO2: 2.3
Pressure/Weight: 12.54 PSI Carbonation Used: Keg with 12.54 PSI
Keg/Bottling Temperature: 45.0 F Age for: 30.00 days
Fermentation: Ale, Single Stage Storage Temperature: 65.0 F
Fermentation Notes
Primary Fermentation:  Pitched at 62 degrees for 10 days, then ramped up 4 degrees a day until the wort hit 71.  Yeast Nutrient was pitched every 3 days and then de-gassed.
Created with BeerSmith


  1. Alright, this is the post that has finally pushed me over the edge. I need to finally make a Mead! Do you recall the vendor you purchased the bulk honey from and how much it ran you? Also what variety did you go with?

    1. I purchased from Dutch Gold Honey. 60# was $100.00 or so. The shipping was about $70.00 from New Jersey to San Diego. This honey was Orange Blossum.

    2. Sounds good! Are you just storing the bulk honey at room temp? At roughly 6lbs of honey per batch, you've got quite a supply. Any idea what the shelf life is?

      The blueberry mead looks amazing by the way, I think this recipe will be my first attempt.


    3. I've purchased the bulk honey 2 times, both times splitting it 3 ways w/other homebrewers. We pack it in 5# vacuum sealed bags and store warm. It is pure honey and will last forever.

    4. BTW, how did the braggot turn out? Do you plan on posting any tasting notes on that one? Also what ratio of Beer/Mead did you end up going with? It sounds like it would be delicious!

    5. Jerad,

      The braggot turned out great. See the judges comments as it made it into the 2nd round of NHC. Here is the link.

      I have one extra bottle left over (besides the NHC ones) that I wanted to save and drink once NHC is over while reading the tasting notes from the judges.

      As for the blends, it was about 30% mead and 70% Porter


Thanks for Commenting, Prost!