It is now strawberry season, here. So walking around the farmer’s market I had the urge to try to brew a strawberry mead recipe. I picked up a flat (8 quarts) of strawberries. After removing the stems, I quartered them and split them into 3 large freezer bags. I also added a squirt of lemon juice to keep them fresh while I was cutting them. Then I threw them in the freezer to help break down the fruits’ cell walls. Then thawed one for the primary. This allows for the flavor to be extracted more efficiently.
Ingredients – Primary
- 9 lbs. Wildflower honey
- ~3.5-4 lbs. Strawberries
- 5 Bananas
- Yeast Nutrients – Staggered Addition
- ~7-8 lbs. Strawberries
- There will probably be some backsweetening, but it’s still in primary. TBD
Original Gravity: 1.044
Potential ABV: Approximately 6%
So the gravity may be a bit inaccurate due to the sugars in the fruit not being fully diffused into the liquid when I took the measurement. But I’m just looking for a ballpark figure.
You may be wondering why the bananas. I’ve read they work as a very good compliment to the strawberry flavor. Strawberry is a tough one, as it is very light. Even eating the fruit itself, its mostly an after taste. On top of the flavor compliment, bananas are also supposed to impart a good amount of mouthfeel to the drink. I am excited to see how this turns out. Mouthfeel seems to be the biggest sticking point for a lot of my batches. They are all a bit thinner feeling than I’d like them to be. I’d suggest using a brew bag for the bananas, at the very least. The first few I added, I had forgotten to put them in one, and they essentially melted. So there will be a lot of sediment at the bottom of my container when this is done.
If you are attempting a strawberry melomel recipe, and are using a carboy, you will want to use a blow off tube instead of a regular airlock. Strawberry is known to be promote quite a vigorous fermentation. Wider buckets shouldn’t have much of an issue if there is plenty of head space, but it might not be a bad idea anyway. I went light on the strawberry in the primary so mine hasn’t been an issue, yet. But with the combination of the bananas essentially melting, there is a large amount of krausen, or fermentation foam build up floating on top.