This recipe makes a 5 gallon batch of a delicious, sparkling blueberry mead. It is light and refreshing – the perfect drink for a warm summer day. Serve this melomel in a mason jar with a lemon wedge, a handful of fresh blueberries, and a sprig of mint. It will be a hit at your next barbecue – complimenting a rousing game cornhole or washers.
- 4.5 gal water
- 11 cups Clover Honey (8.25 lbs)
- 3 oz Fresh Ginger
- 2 Lemons
- 2 Limes
- 1 gal Frozen Blueberries (freezing the berries breaks cell walls and releases more fruit juice)
- 4 tsp Yeast Nutrient
- 5 g (1 packet) Red Star Cote des Blancs
- 1 oz. Cascade Leaf Hops
- 3/4 cup Corn Sugar
- In a large brew pot, simmer 3 gallons of water.
- Add the honey while stirring continuously so the honey dissolves without burning on the bottom of the pot.
- Bring the must back to a simmer while letting all the honey dissolve – skim any white foamy scum that forms on the surface.
- Cut the up the ginger into small cubes and add it to the must – simmer for 10 min.
- Remove the pot from the burner, cut lemons and limes in half, squeeze juice and drop the halves into the must.
- Dissolve the Yeast Nutrient in the warm must, then add the frozen blueberries and cover. Let sit for 15 minutes.
- Remove lemons and limes, then add the must with berries to a 5 gallon carboy or bucket along with 1.5 gal cool water, aerate, and pitch the Yeast.
- Seal fermentor with airlock and store in a dark place at a temperature of about 70 degrees.
- After 2 weeks, with a siphon, re-rack the mead into a sanitized 5 gallon carboy.
- Add the 1 oz cascade leaf hops in a muslin bag to the secondary.
- After 1 weeks, re-rack, then let age for 3 months.
- Dissolve the corn sugar in 1 cup warm water and add to carboy.
- Fill sanitized bottles and let age for 1 month.
On what step do you add the 4 tsp of Yeast Nutrient
Hi Steve, Thanks for pointing that out!
You add the yeast nutrient right before the blueberries, when the must is still nice and warm to dissolve it.
Thanks! This is my first time ever making mead, but it looks good so far. One more question. When you re-rack on step 11 do you take out the bag of hops? -Cheers
Glad you’re getting into making mead Steve!
When you re-rack, you should indeed leave the bag of hops out. If you are using a carboy, It can be a little difficult to remove – sometimes i have to cut it open to make it easier to remove once the mead is siphoned out.
Keep me posted on how the process, and your results!
I was going to try the Crazy Good Mead from Ploaschek’s “Mead Made Easy” (I’ve been wanting to try this for many years now) but since I see this recipe, I think I want to do it instead. Similar concept: easy on the honey for a lighter, refreshing summer mead (I usually make heavier meads).
1: Do you know approximately the weight of the gallon of frozen blueberries? I’m buying them by weight, not volume, so this would be helpful.
2: What was your OG and FG (if you took readings)?
Thanks for your interest.
1) I calculate that 1gal of frozen blueberries converts to about 3lbs.
2) Unfortunately I did not take readings for this recipe. Based on the sugar content and the yeast, I guess the OG would be around 1.07 and the FG around 1.01
Good luck. Let me know how it comes out!
I love the recip because you omitted any sulphites so can you clarify the need for the lemons, limes and the hops ? Do they serve a specific purpose for preservative ? …..I am excited to try this recipe …
Thanks for your interest.
The Lemons, Limes, and hops add a bit of acidity and bitterness to balance the sweetness.
Good luck – Let me know how it goes!
What is the roll of the corn sugar? How long do we wait between adding it and bottling (steps 12 & 13)? Thanks!
The corn sugar provides a little more food for the yeast while it is in the bottle. This provides natural carbonation to your bottles. Since this is the purpose, you should bottle right after adding the sugar.
When do you remove the blueberries?
Hi Dan – You will remove the blueberries when you re-rack into the secondary fermentor.
Do you have to add a yeast killer to make sure the fermentation is stopped before adding the corn sugar when bottling….would not want corks popping
The purpose of adding the sugar is to add that natural carbonation from the yeast. So you want the yeast living when you add the sugar so they can consume it and create that carbonation. you don’t want to add too much sugar, or else, you’re right, the corks will pop. The amount I put in this worked well for me without any issues.
When should the ginger be removed? After 10 min simmer, when lemons & limes are removed, or after primary fermentation?
Hi Wade, I removed the ginger with the citrus. To be perfectly honest, I think it would improve the recipe to add more fresh ginger to the secondary as well.
Let me know how it comes out!
Thank you! Brewed it this past Sunday with help from my 10 year old daughter. Only problem I had was that I cut the ginger in fairly small pieces so it took a little time to fish most out. Probably will use hop bag next time.
Nice – hook them while they’re young! : )
I tend to use hop bags whenever I add anything to the mead – it just makes it that much easier to get out.
We tried mead after secondary but it did not have much flavor. Is it to late to add addled flavoring or berries?
Hi, I noticed the recipe calls for 4 gal water but directions only describe using 3. Is it safe to assume that extra gallon is thrown in putting the must into the carboy?
Thanks for pointing that out Justin. You’re absolutely right. I adjusted the recipe accordingly.
I’m planning to make this next week, considering altering the recipe a bit, subbing 1 gal fresh cider for 1 gal water. Im also hoping to try your suggestion in a comment to add a little fresh ginger to secondary, maybe I’ll throw in some more berries. Also, can I use 3/4 cup honey for bottle conditioning or is there some benefit to using corn sugar?
Hey Justin, For bottle conditioning I recommend corn sugar because usually the priming sugar doesn’t add much but carbonation and sugar is much cheaper than honey. Either will work though. Goodluck!
Do you happen to know what the OG was when you made this? Thanks!
Unfortunately I did not take those measurements for this one. Sorry about that!
Was going to make a 3 gallon batch of Gooseberry mead/melomel this week but this recipe has really caught my eye, I am thinking about changing from gooseberries to this one.
A couple of questions though, A: Yeast. I like to use either Wyeast Sweet Mead or the White Labs Sweet Mead for my yeast. Will this still turn out fine using one of those with a two day head starter?
And B: the corn sugar at the end makes it sparkling, this I know, but does it also bring back sweetening to the table as well,, and could that same back sweetening be added to by adding another pound of clover honey along with some sort of percentage of the corn sugar asked for? Or am I just asking for bottle bombs at that point? Is there a way around that without the use of potassium sorbate?
I know this is old, but in case someone else wants a method even if you don’t need it anymore, the way I get sweet sparkling mead without bottle bombs, is I use the sanitize setting on my dishwasher. It has worked on both beer bottles and the bigger swing cap 1 liter bottles. You do need to make sure your dishwasher has that function, and that it gets hot enough long enough to kill the yeast, as mine does. I have a Maytag. when I bottle, I bottle one in a plastic soda bottle along with the rest in the glass bottles. I monitor the carbination level by feeling the plastic bottle until it gets firm enough that I can hardly press into it, then I may open one of the bottles just to test it for good carbination for good measure, then run the rest through the dishwasher to stop the fermentation. I have been doing that on my sweet ciders and occasional carbinated wines/meads for a few years now and never had a bottle bomb. You do need to use either swingtop bottles or beer bottles with the metal caps. corks won’t work, they’ll blow the cork when they get extra pressurized from the heat cycle in the dishwasher.
Thanks for the insight Deshi!
I’m 4 days into the primary fermentation and there is a fairly strong sulfur oder present. I aerated the must well prior to pitching the yeast, used the listed amount of nutrient, and kept the temp between 66-70 degrees. ive read this can be common with cotes des blanc yeast. What should I do?
I just made this today. I didn’t read the comments and left the ginger in the primary. Is is going to be ruined?
That should be perfectly fine Hans.
Also, I’m 9 days in and my gravity is .997, super dry. Tastes awesome but I’d like it to be a little sweeter. What’s the etiquette regarding adding a little extra sugar before bottling? I know bottle bombs are a concern.
For those asking about the OG, I recently made this. It is fermenting now. I got an OG of 1.066 using a hydrometer.
Mine was 1.055 but I’m sure the blueberries threw it off.
I accidentally left ginger in the primary. Will it be ok?
I am going to age my mead in 20 litre oak barrels, should longer the better be the way?
Also I presume the corn syrup should go in before the final bottling takes place?
Hi, I made this mead yesterday as my first attempt in brewing something!
I changed a bit the recipe since i didn’t find some of the ingredients:
I used a champagne yeast different from that red star and i didn’t use the ginger.
Is it ok to add the ginger in a second time? Maybe cooking them a bit to kill bacteria and stuff?
Feel free to add the ginger into the secondary – I do this all the time!
Will this age well? I am looking for a recipe to age for a year so I can give it as a wedding gift for the first anniversary.
Hi Heidi – great idea! mead almost always ages well – I would just keep the hops from the recipe. Dry Hopping is meant to give aromatics to the mead. The hop resins can deteriorate over time. Other than that, you’re good!
Will Do! Thank You.
Great recipe,thanks for sharing. My question is can you substitute the blueberries with other berries like raspberries, strawberry etc.
Go for it Henry!
Hey! I was wondering about the bottles. I’ve read that sparkling mead can cause bottles to explode?
Are these sparkling recipes a little lighter on the carbonation then say, champaign?
Would beer bottles with the metal caps be ok for these?
The carbonation is definitely lower than champagne – more on par with beer, so beer bottles will do just fine.
I just racked into my secondary with fresh ginger and will re-rack in another week. Your directions have us aging then for 3 months and then bottling, I am going to age this for a year, is it better to bottle after the 3 months and then let it continue aging or should I let it age in a carboy?
I have just racked for the 3 month ageing, when I racked into the new carboy, I was left with about a gallon of empty top space. I know that too much oxygen is bad, what is the best way to deal with the much empty top space?
You could top it off with water, or what I like to do is use a 3 gallon along with a one gallon carboy then use the smaller one to experiment with oak chips, ginger, or other flavors.
Add glass marbles to your carboy to bring the level up.
Thanks, I like the 2nd idea! What fun.
Hi my question is you squeeze the lemon and lime juice but you don’t use it for the meat
So I’ve made my share of beer, recently got the bug to make a mead and found this recipe. I used the Wyeast sweet mead yeast and pretty much followed the recipe exactly, changing only some aromatics. I pasteurized the blueberries in the must at 140 for about 15 minutes and then cooled, pitched and off we go. The question I have it this:
It appears to be going very slowly, I pitched a Sav Blanc kit the same day that has a krausen, and it gurgling away, the mead however, is barely percolating. I was thinking it might be the blueberries floating on the top still being whole. Did I mess that up?
I was thinking about skimming the blueberries off and making more of a purée and then re adding them to the must.
I would appreciate your thoughts, I like the recipe and I plan to maybe add some more honey to the 2nd but I’m concerned the primary is going too slow.
can this recipe work with blueberry blossom raw honey?
Can it be racked with wine bottles and corks, or will it require beer or champagne bottles?
Hi what would be the conversion to make a one gallon batch?
Is it okay to add al the nutrient at once? I’ve read that it’s better to stagger the additions at least for the first week.
Step 11? Aging for 3 months. Should I top off with water to remove head space? And should an air lock be used.
Quick question, I’m making this blueberry mead, but I added a few slices of orange instead of lemon and lime, is it safe to leave the slices there during the primary fermentation or will it kill the yeast? I used 3 lbs of honey for a 1 gallon batch, along with 1 pint of berries and 1 tsp of nutrient.
The yeast will be fine with the orange slices in there!
Sounds delicious – let us know how it comes out.
Why is it that this recipe only calls for 8.25 pounds of honey when generally you use 12 pounds for a dry mead and 15 for a balanced mead (in a 5 gallon batch)? I am thinking about changing it to 12 pounds and back sweetening as necessary. What are your thoughts? For a 5 gallon batch, the recipe seems like it would be extremely dry from lack of honey and relatively flavorless from the small amount of blueberries. Thanks!
Any tips for using fresh blueberries? A grower near me offers them on the cheap. Should I still freeze them? More importantly, what efforts should I take to sanitize them?
I’ve read that freezing them first actually helps to break down cell walls. I’ve also read of people running them through a juicer (such as an Omega low RPM juicer with a blank plate) and throwing the result into the must. Or putting them into a blender. I’m a little paranoid about adding fresh fruit directly into a must, so I’m thinking it would be best to bring water up to temp and let ’em simmer in some hot water for a bit.
Interesting recipe. After the 3 months and additional month bottle aging, do the hops still shine through and have a presence?
We tried mead after secondary but it did not have much flavor. Is it to late to add addled flavoring or berries?
Just entered secondary fermentation and I’m at 6% abv. Doesn’t seem to taste as strong as previous meads I’ve made. Is it possible to make it stronger and perhaps berrier? Was thinking about back sweetening with a blueberry syrup made from the same batch of blueberries we picked.
I’ve been looking at a couple of your recipees, this one and I have started the Hop Head IPA style Mead this Sunday.
I’m a bit uncertain about the corn sugar, by my calculations 3/4 Cup is 153g and that is a lot of sugar – I’m never over 100g when I carbonate my beer and here I have about 6.5 gal
Is there something I’m missing?
What types of bottles should I use, I typically brew still meads and am not sure if i should invest in beer bottles or champagne bottles.
Just wanted to say, my husband and I made a one gallon recipe of this mead (we just started out a few months ago), we just bottled it, but kept a little bit out to taste. It’s delicious! Very light and refreshing, I can’t wait to taste it carbonated! I told my husband we MUST make a 5 gallon batch so we can enjoy it more and share with friends and family.
I wonder if anyone has tried this recipe with an ale yeast?
Made this in a 5 gallon batch. I couldn’t find the cascade hops so I ended up using centennial and RC212 yeast. It turned out amazing!! I’ve gotten rave reviews from friends who tried it so far. Nice light taste once it’s carbonated- the blueberry flavor comes through but isn’t overwhelming. 9.3% abv!
Where and when do you add the cote does Blancs? I didn’t see it in the directions
Step 7 – Pitch the yeast.
Hi. Just curious as to how important is the choice of yeast? I’m a beginner and I have Red Star Premier Blanc, Lanvin EC-1118 and Lanvin D-47 on hand.
Thanks for your recipes and expertise.
Thanks for the recipe! I’m curious about the added carbonation at the end- will a standard wine cork handle that or do I need to consider champagne corks/cages?