Leigh Erwin: Stuck Fermentation?

Frustrated About Her Meads Stuck FermentationHello everyone!

You’re probably all getting sick of me talking about my mead at this point, but I suppose the whole point of this diary is to take you through both the good and the bad times of my home winemaking adventures, so there are bound to be problems that arise and stick around for a while!

I actually think the “issue” I am having isn’t really that big a deal, but since I haven’t had as much time on my hands, it has dragged out a lot longer than I had hoped.

Anyway, last I checked the specific gravity, it was 1.000. Still not quite were I want it to be (want it around 0.998 or so), but since it’s been holding pretty steady around this point for many weeks now, I came to the conclusion that I have a stuck fermentation.  Also, between when I racked the mead the first time and when I racked it the second time, there was little to no sediment left over but still a ton of “stuff” in suspension.  All that plus the fact that it still tastes a little yeasty to me, leads me to believe that there is still some yeast in there but it’s on strike, thus a stuck fermentation.

Shop Yeast EnergizerWhat I decided to do is add both yeast nutrient and yeast energizer.  According to the packaging on both products, I can use them to try and jump start a stuck fermentation at ½ a teaspoon per gallon (each), so if the instructions say I can do that, then I’m going to go ahead and do that!

Since I have roughly 5 gallons of mead (maybe a little less at this point, but for easy math I’m sticking with 5), that equals 2.5 teaspoons of yeast nutrient and also 2.5 teaspoons of yeast energizer.  I added both to my mead, then gave it a nice stir to get everything in suspension and hopefully waking up that remaining yeast.

I also put an airlock on the carboy, so hopefully I’ll start to see a little activity (albeit very slow most likely) over the next few days, and put this stuck fermentation behind me.

I’ll probably give it another week or so, then test the specific gravity again.  If the fermentation is still stuck, then I think I’ll add some new yeast to try and finish the job.  Also, it would probably be wise of me to purchase a pH testing strips as well, as knowing the pH of the mead would probably be helpful in figuring out how to address this issue!

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Leigh ErwinMy name is Leigh Erwin, and I am a brand-spankin’ new home winemaker! E. C. Kraus has asked me to share with you my journey from a first-time dabbler to an accomplished home winemaker. From time to time I’ll be checking in with this blog and reporting my experience with you: the good, bad — and the ugly.

One thought on “Leigh Erwin: Stuck Fermentation?

  1. first of all I would not call a 1000sg a stuck fermentation, I would call it done and the ton of stuff still in it is both still live and dead yeast that has not settled enough yet and so it is giving you a small faults reading because it is so dense, and or maybe the temperature along with that has dropped also in causing a higher reading yet than you want? I myself have never made mead, so my question is how far am I from right or wrong am I on this?

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