So I finally bottled the Chocolate and Chocolate Mint. I expect a year and 1/2 aging on it, which should make the first bottle openable and really really good on my 44th birthday, Read as September 2013. I think that I may hold off opening the first bottle until mile high con. I washed out the bottles and bottled this after I racked it one final time to make sure it was clear of sediment.
Chocolate: This one is dark and I was initially thinking that it wasn't cleared all the way yet but it is a nice dark smoke quartz look to it. Smells of dark chocolate, The taste was astringent of all new meads but I did back sweeten it enough. These should have some stong legs. The darkness of this is just beautiful. Kim says that it does smell like chocolate to her but I don't fully smell it. I got 1 bottle less than 2 cases.
Chocolate Mint: This one is a bit lighter than the Chocolate and I still may have put too much mint in it. The mint was not overpowering, a smidge under 1/4 teaspoon of extract. The astringent quality of the new mead combined with the mint was difficult to swallow but I am confidient that this one two will be sweet and age well. Though this will end up a bit more like a darker chocolate. It should outshine the Chocolate because a Dark Chocolate Plus Mint makes for a great flavor.
Overview: I think that 1 pound of nibs should sufice in the future instead of two. This and something like coconut may make it taste more like a milk chocolate. Or go with back sweetening with about 3-4 pounds of lactose sugar, minimum.
Strawberry with Orange blossum honey: Got the orange blossom honey primary finally racked. It was a pale yellow tan color, still needs clearing. This one may need to have some sparkloid treatments. As in more than one. But we shall see after I take out the fruit. I pulped the strawberry and put in a mesh bag, All 14 pounds of strawberries, blenderized, a bit of pectic enzyme and in it goes. Racked the mead right on top of that.
Mango with Orange blossum honey: Same as this used 18 pounds but bulk weight after the skins and seeds it is much less weight than the strawberries. This should turn out smooth and great tasting. It may be ready by next mile hi con. But I doubt it, more like soltice or new years eve for 2013.
The pumpkin Hazelnet doesn't need to be racked yet but soon.
The Rockbiter: Tale of Three Toasts is looking really good. I may end up bottling it summer Solstice. Which would make it bare minimum drinkable at winter solstice but I may just wait til spring next year to bottle.
Next in the Carboy: Blueberry Vanilla, Bamboo Jasimin
Fall in Carboy: Another Pumplkin something, Peach Vanilla, Maybe a cranberry vanilla or Cranberry Polmagranite. Don't know yet.
That's it for now. Busy weekend.