Thursday, December 22, 2016

Chocolate mint wine

Chocolate mint wine. The mint was too strong, kind of taste like an off brand thin mint where you can barely taste the chocolate cause the mint is so strong. Less mint leaves next time

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Chocolate Mint Wine

My first attempt at chocolate mint wine.

A real simple recipe for my first try. 5 quarts chocolate mint leaves, 10lbs cane sugar, ec-1118. SG 1.093 FG 1.015 10% abv

I steamed the mint leaves in a canner and left it till cool before opening to try and capture the chocolate taste. All my efforts were for not as my basement smelled like chocolate for a week. It tastes like it used to have chocolate in it. The mint was a bit strong, but really tasty. I think i'll just boil as usual for the leaves next time.

For this time i'm made up for the extra mint with extra chocolate. I was going to use 4oz cocoa powder but i used all 8oz. I also threw in a half pound of milk sugar and 5 campden tablets.

The mint grows fast from march till november, The leaves will grow back in a week after i pick them. If i can perfect this recipe, I can make it for $10. $20 for fancy yeast and cocoa. Will bottle Christmas eve

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Dream Mead

My next Recipe

Dream Mead

5lbs Oranges (zest & juice)
5lbs Honey
1/2lb Milk Sugar
2 Vanilla beans split
Bohemian Lager Yeast
Yeast Nutrient
5 oz cane sugar

Monday, October 10, 2016

Blackberry Cream Mead Recipe

15 lbs Blackberries
5lbs Honey
1/2 lb Milk Sugar (lactose)
2 tsp Pumkin Pie Spice
Saflager W34/70 Lager Yeast

Follow my recipe for Lagering Mead

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Roasted Pumpkin

Pumpkin stuffed with onions, sausage, cheese, and a garli

c peanut curry

Saturday, September 3, 2016

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Lagering Mead

This is my basic recipe for lagering mead that I have been over brewing the last couple years. It's easy enough for beginners and extract brewers. It's affordable because it takes a lot less honey than a still mead. You can add what ever you like to it, the same way you would for an extract beer kit. It's hard to beat cold clean crisp mead. I am surprised that recipes like this are not more common. Hopefully this recipe might change that.

6 pounds of Dark Honey
Yeast Nutrient (according to Label)
2 packs Lager yeast.
5 oz priming sugar.

O.G. 1.055 F.G. 1.004 aprox. 6% alc/vol.

Gravities will vary with the honey, but not enough to matter.

Boil 1 Gallon of water. Remove from heat. Add Honey. Pour into 5 gallon fermenter.

Top up to shoulder of fermenter with cold boiled water.

Allow to cool to 70 F.

Add one pack of yeast and yeast nutrient.

Shake or stir for 15 minutes.

Immediately Store at 55 f.

In 24 to 72 hours it should begin bubbling.

In a week to 3 weeks, a day or two after the airlock has slowed to less than a bubble every half hour, store at 70 degrees for 24 hours.

Rack into a clean jug.

Return to 55f for 3 months or until clear.

Add priming sugar and 2nd pack of yeast. Top up to 5 gallons with cold boiled water.


Return to 55 degrees for one month. Longer if not carbonated.

Store at 35f from one month to two years.


The darker the honey, the stronger flavor. Light processed honey might have hardly any flavor at all. Also darker honeys have more solids which increases head retention. Dollar store honey may turn out like soda water and alcohol.

I like saflager w-34 70 yeast. It is very forgiving. I can brew on my basement floor that varies between 47 and 68 degrees depending on the time of year without off flavors. If your making a melomel you might want saflager-s23 for it's fruity esters. A slight banana\berry taste went really well in the cherry melomel.

You should rack into a clean jug just after the diacetal rest (storing at 70f for 24 hours), so that diacetal and off flavors have a chance to escape while racking. I like to bring mine up stairs and let it rest in the spot i will rack it, so everything has a chance to settle for 24 hours.

The second pack of yeast at bottling is necessary because the lager are so clear and the yeast has all fallen to the bottom. At 55f the small amount of yeast left isn't enough to get a good start all the time.


You can add hops and specialty malts as you would for any beer recipe. Follow their recipe for the boil and add the honey at the end of the boil.


It is easy to replace a pound of honey with a few pounds of fruit. Like cherries are approximately 20% sugar. So, 5 pounds of cherries equals one pound of honey. See my cherry melomel recipe, "Fairy Blood."

You are not restricted like you are with beer. What ever goes good with honey, goes good in this.. I have done, blackberries with milk sugar and chanel spices. Peaches, cherries, and cranberry. Most of the recipes I have made are adapted pie filling recipes.

Citrus really comes through nicely. The zest and the juice of a citrus fruit per gallon about 10 minutes before the end of the boil. Large oranges, grapefruits, should count as two.


A teaspoon or two of spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves. A quart of mint leaves per gallon. Smoked wood chips. You can add them at the start or end of the boil, or in the secondary (dry hopping), just as for beer.

Hope you enjoy.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

New Computer

Gigabyte Ultra Durable Amd 970 chipset board

AMD FX-4350 quadcore 4.2 CPU

8 gb ddr3 1600 ram

Gigabyte Ultra Durable AMD Radeon R5 1gb video card

All for $201 shipped

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Cold Brewed Cherry Melomel Recipe

  • 5 pounds of cherries, pitted if needed.

  • 5 pounds of honey

  • 2 lemons zest & juice

  • 2 limes zest & juice

  • 2 teaspoons of cinnamon

  • Bohemian Lager Yeast

  • Yeast Nutrient (according to label)

  • 5 ounces of corm sugar (for priming)

  • Water to 5 gallons

Simmer (160 degrees) cherries for 45 minutes.

Remove from heat, stir in honey, lemons, limes, and cinnamon.

Pour through metal strainer into a 5 gallon jug or bucket

Add water up to shoulder of the jug.

Attach airlock. Leave to stand till next morning.

Add Yeast & Nutrient.

Shake with airlock off for 15 minutes.

Store at 55 degrees F.

In 24 to 48 hours it should begin bubbling.

After a week to 3 weeks, a day or two after bubbling stops, store at 70 degrees F for 24 hours.

Siphon into a clean 5 gallon jug.

Return to 55 degrees for 3 nonths.

Siphon into a bottling bucket, stir in priming sugar. Bottle or keg.

Return to 55 degrees for 1 month. Longer if not carbonated fully.

Store at 35 degrees for up to 1.5 years.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Dandelion wine in an antique bottle

An antique bottle I found for the dandelion wine. It will look great on the shelf. Too bad the dandelions didn't come up this year.

Friday, April 8, 2016

WinFF for Windows 10

Tweaked a couple settings and fixed the mpeg4 720p and 10 presets for Windows 10.

WinFF Windows 10 Installer

Monday, April 4, 2016

Low Power Computing and Home Networking Philosophy

As my electric bill keeps going up I have been trying to cut down on usage. After getting rid of unnecessary things, buying a smaller frig, I found my two biggest users of electricity were my hot water heater and my computer. There are ways to save money on the hot water heater but replacing a single desktop pc with a few lower power devices can knock $10 to $20 off your electric bill.

My computer is a 2.7 ghz amd dual core with 3 gigs ddr2 ram and a 1 tb 7200 spin hard drive. I calculated it out to 203 watts idle with a online calculator. Online calculator are not precise but they are are usually good enough. It is a pretty average desktop pc. It is not surprising that it is around 200 watts when idle. Newer desktop computers idle lower, but still usually more than 100 watts without going to sleep.

Electricity is sold in kilowatts, so my computer is 0.203 kilowatts. The national average per kilowatt hour is $0.10. Mine is $0.097

If we take .203 kilowatts x 24 hours x 30 days x $0.10 kilowatt hour = $14.67 per month if the computer runs all the time. If you have a graphics card, more memory, or more hard drives, the price goes up quickly. A system with 2 graphics and 8 or more gigs of ram can easily idle at 500 watts. A 500 watt system would be $36 dollars a month.

I want my hard drive available 24/7 so I can access my media from my network. So my pc pretty well has to stay on 24/7. One way I found to eliminate this was to have a separate server for my hard drive so that it is accessible when my computer is off.

This is where Network Attached Storage (NAS) comes in. By attaching the hard drive to the router or modem, it becomes available to the entire network on demand. It also becomes a media server and back up drive for all your devices . So there is no need to have a hard drive in any device unless you will be playing large games or running apps like photoshop. There are many NAS servers out there. I was specifically looking for low power like an external hard drive, not ones that have a power supply in them like a computer. The two most available are the Seagate Personal Cloud and the WD My cloud. They are both about $30 or $40 above the price of the same size external hard drive. I went with the Seagate because I liked the web interface better than the WD My Cloud. It is really just preference though. They are both about 15 watts when idle or $1.08/month in electricity.

Another reason I leave my computer on is to watch netflix, read the internet, or listen to a radio station. There are many devices that can work for that. Android TV boxes range from $40 to $200. I was looking for windows like my pc. I bought the Intel Compute Stick. It runs about $129. It is a quadcore intel atom with 2 gb of ram and 32gb internal storage. It plugs in to an hdmi port on your tv and turns it into windows 10 pc. It streams great. It will play Minecraft but not Call of Duty. It is more than enough for just watching netflix, cruising the web, or office work. It uses a lowly 2.5 watts of electricity when idle or $0.18/month.

So with both of them that’s 17.5 watts or $1.22/month. So $14.67 minus $1.22 is $13.45 dollars per month in savings or $161/year. Add in my roku for 5 watts or $0.36 cents. That brings my total cost for month to leave my electronics on 24/7 $1.58.

I still also have my pc that I can turn on any time to play games or run photoshop.

Considering the cost of the Intel Compute Stick ($129), the Seagate Personal Cloud ($135), and an extra $50 for things like keyboards, mice, sd cards. That would be $314. At a savings of $161 per year, the system would pay for itself in 23 months, or just under 2 years.

Besides the electricity saving, My media is completely accessible anywhere in the world. Not only are my devices backed up, but i can automatically back up my facebook, wordpress, and google plus posts. It is easy and cheap to add another device. I can share my media with anyone’s phone or tablet when the come over. They can cast videos straight to my tv