Thursday, May 04, 2017
Kegged up the meads I made last fall, and there are issues. I didn't put pectic enzyme in the primary, and the pear melomel is showing it, even after DualFine, it's hazy as a hot day in Shanghai. It tastes pretty good, but I think I might rack it back out of the keg and into a carboy with a new dose of pectic enzyme and let the summer work on it a bit.
The other batch, the autumn olive, crab apple, pear and apple melomel, it's clear as a bell but has a flavor I associate with yeast under stress: plastic/bandaid phenolics, more in the flavor than the aroma. That's the whole point of the degassing wand and staggered nutrient additions, but I can't tell if it's actually yeast produced phenols or if maybe this is the character of autumn olive. Which, if that's the case, I may have screwed up the other day when I started another batch that included a fair bit of autumn olive juice. The juice, pre-ferment, has a pleasant, tart, dry flavor, lots of acid and tanin. But grape juice and wine ain't the same flavor, so if it turns out this is just the flavor of fermented autumn olive, I might avoid that fruit from now on.
Arguing in favor of it being the fruit and not the yeast is I'm not getting that off flavor in the hazy pear melomel and they were pitched with the same yeast on the same day, got the same treatment as far as degassing and nutrient additions, side-by-side. And it's not undrinkable or anything, but with the amount of work I put in on these things, I kind of expect something near perfection.