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> Belgeglin, Belgian Metheglin
Dave F
post Feb 3 2011, 10:22 PM
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I've been thinking about a mead done with a Belgian yeast, and it will include some of the traditional spices (corriander seed and bitter orange) to make it a metheglin...

I really want that Belgian yeast character, a la your favorite saison or Belgian IPA, to shine through, but what yeast to use? I need something that will stand up to the OG / potential ABV of a mead starting at least 1.100 if not 1.110, and I don't want to end sweet. I generally prefer dry meads, and at most lightly semi-sweet (which would probably work with this idea), so I'm looking at ABV's of at least 12, if not 13 or 14%.

What yeast will give me that fruity/spicy Belgian feel and still tolerate up to 14% ABV? (Obviously I will be paying close attention to proper pitching rates by making a big starter and doing staggered nutrient additions, so the question refers to the yeast and it's abilities only...)

Here's a second question while were at it: I use 1 oz of coriander seed and 1/2 oz of bitter orange peel in my usual saison recipe (5 gal batch size, ~ 7% ABV). Would you increase the amounts any for this idea? I usually do 6 gallon mead batches, so I'm considering a slightly increased volume, but also the increased ABV...do I need to up the ante with the spices to deal with a mead ABV?
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DavidS
post Jun 7 2011, 12:51 PM
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The Wyeast 3787 should be your ticket here. Pitch well and watch fermentation temps. Start at 68 and let it rise to about 80 to finish out. You could also pitch some champange yeast that would finish it off if needed. That should leave the belgian character.

spices in beers need to be inceased for gravity increases. I would think the same is true for meads.

I'd love a sample if you make this.
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Dave F
post Jun 8 2011, 09:02 PM
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I definitely considered the Trappist Hi-Grav, but I've also been thinking/reading a lot about the French Saison (Wyeast 3711) yeast since I originally posted this thread. I'm really leaning towards that one based on other discussion from a similar thread I posted elsewhere... As you can see from my signature, this one is solidly on deck...I will probably be starting fairly soon...I tend to brew a saison in the early summer, once it warms up a little more so my cellar temps are in the mid 70's. This year I'll use some of the harvested yeast from that to brew the mead. It should be ready for Mead Day in 2012, so if Alt Bev holds an event, I should be there with a few bottles of this (and others)!
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Dave F
post Nov 3 2011, 08:28 PM
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So I ended up brewing this one on 8/11/11. OG 1.100. Used 1 oz each of bitter orange peel and mortar and pestle crushed corriander seed. Steeped these in the warmed water that I used to dissolve the honey, then also added the spice bag to the primary. I can't say enough about the French Saison strain (Wyeast 3711)...it's an incredible yeast. My FG was 1.005 (12.7%), and gives a really nice ester profile. I think the amounts of spice were just right, given that I steeped them in the primary for an extended period (up to today, when I bottled directly from primary, since it had cleared so well).

Overall, I'm extremely pleased with the result...can't wait to see how this ages out...think it will be great if not amazing by Mead Day next year..
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