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2022 Batch 02 - Pecan Brandy Mead

I watched an episode of Moonshiners: Master Distiller late in 2020 where one of the contestants made a Pecan Brandy that he (and the judges) described as being very tasty, like drinking a pecan pie.  I thought that sounded good, and although distilling it into brandy would not be a legal option for me, turning it into a mead would be quite possible and might be good.

The recipe as described on the show was pretty simple... honey, water, yeast, and pecans.

Ingredients

12 pounds of Wildflower Honey
2 pounds of Pecans, crushed and ground
4 gallons of water, treated with some gypsum
1 tsp. yeast nutrient
1 package of Premier Des Cotes champagne yeast

Batch Size: 5.0 gallons (actual and estimated)
Original Gravity: 1.090 (actual and estimated)
Final Gravity:  0.984 (estimated)

Brewing Instructions

Bring water to a boil and sterilize wort chiller.

Add half the pecans in a muslin bag.  Add the other half, in a different muslin bag, to the fermenter.

Gradually add honey while stirring the liquid.

When all the honey is added, pump the must through the wort chiller into the fermenter.

With sanitized tongs, transfer the bag of pecans to the fermenter so that both bags and all the pecans are in the fermenter.

Pitch two packages of the yeast when the must temperature is in range for the yeast.

Ferment until completely fermented, then bottle and enjoy.

Post-Brew Notes and Observations

01/08/2022:  Fermenter volume read exactly 5 gallons at 78F with a gravity of 1.089 SG.

01/09/2022:  Gravity has dropped to 1.088 SG.

01/10/2022:  Gravity is down to 1.086 SG at a temp around 66F.  There are clear signs of activity in the airlock if you check, so I assume the yeast are still getting up to speed and that we'll see activity pick up today.  If not, I may need to add more yeast and perhaps a farmentation heat wrap to get things kickstarted.



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