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M1b – Semi-Sweet Traditional. 

2021 Best of Show: Valkyries Horn
2021 Gold: Valkyries Horn
2022 Silver: AHA Nationals
2022 Silver: Mazer Cup

Ingredients for 5 gallons of must (at 1.064 Original Gravity):

8 lbs. Gibbons Sweet Yellow Clover honey
3.75 gals RO water (gradually add enough to reach 1.064 Original Gravity)
9 grams OptiWhite (SIY)
3 grams FT Blanc Soft (Tannin)
12 grams DV10 Yeast (low YAN needs, temp range: 50-90F) FERMENT at 58F
15 grams GoFermProtect in 300 ml water
6 grams FermaidO * 4 additions (24 gr total) with each addition in 120 ml water
½ cup American Oak Light Toast (approximately xx grams)

Post Fermentation:

3 lbs 6 oz Sweet Yellow Clover honey for backsweetening post fermentation


Incorporate the water and honey and ensure it’s fully dissolved. Add Oak chips, FT Blanc Soft and OptiWhite and mix well.

Prepare GoFermProtect by heating water to 160F. Mix thoroughly. When the mixture reaches 95F, add the yeast and mix well. Every 10 minutes add 20 ml of the must to the yeast mixture until the mixture is within 10F of the must temperature (this is called atemperating the yeast). Oxygenate with pure O2 and a sintered stone for 120 seconds at 1 liter per minute. Pitch yeast into the must, and mix well.

Cover the must, use an airlock or blowoff tube depending on your headspace and customary process.

Day 1: Add first infusion of Fermaid O. Mix it in the water as prescribed.
Day 2: Add second infusion of Fermaid O.
Day 3: Add third infusion of Fermaid O.

Day 7 OR 1/3 sugar break (1.091 O.G.) Add fourth infusion of Fermaid O. Note: If the yeast raced past this gravity, skip the addition. If it’s close, add it. It’s not rocket science requiring high precision.

Fermentation will last approximately 3 weeks. Once final gravity is reached cold crash for 3 days at 35F, then rack to secondary. Immediately add standard doses of Potassium MetaBiSulfite and Potassium Sorbate. Wait at least 24 hours before backsweetening using the same Sweet Yellow Clover honey. Oak may come out at first racking, or keep it in longer to your taste. NOTE: This is NOT your usual grocery store clover honey. It is specifically Wayne Gibbon’s sweet clover which is a light honey with fantastic cinnamon notes. Do not heat this honey beyond 100 degrees. Feel free to backsweeten to your liking. Add Fining agents and/or filter for a clear mead. This recipe should get you in the perceived border between sweet and semi sweet. Carbonate to 2 volumes.