It’s bottling day at the meadery, bottling and kegging the first ever batch of Hot For Peacher sparkling peach jalapeño mead.
The day started early, at the winery at 6am sharp to prep the priming sugar. The winery doesn’t have any way to boil water, so I brought along a propane brew stove and brew kettle. We set it up out back and got cooking. Once the water was boiling, we added the sugar, then used a wort chiller to cool it back down as quickly as possible. We started racking Hot For Peacher into a new tank to mix and then bottle from. As the mead racked into the new tank, we poured in the sugar-water-solution to prime the mead for carbonation.
Once the priming sugar was added and mixed well, we started kegging and bottling. We used a splitter on the tank so we could keg and bottle at the same time. Kegging started a little earlier than bottling, turns out it takes some time to get a mobile bottling truck fully set up. We filled the kegs one at a time, each with tender love and care. This short video covers 2 hours or so of kegging.
Once the mobile bottling truck was set up and ready to go, we started bottling Hot For Peacher. We decided to bottle Hot For Peacher in 12-oz bottles, and this was my first time working with a mobile bottling truck before … what a cool machine! You feed in empty bottles and it applies the label, sanitizes the bottle, fills it (with delicious mead), and crowns it, all automatically. I had a couple friends helping me out with the bottling line while I was kegging. One friend fed the empty bottles into the bottling line. The other friend collected the filled-and-capped bottles at the other end and put them back into the box to bottle-condition.
When all was settled and done six hours later, we had all of the Hot For Peacher kegged and bottled. Everything (surprisingly) went according to plan. Now all that’s left is to wait three weeks for the mead to become “sparkling mead,” then it’s time to enjoy!
This first batch of Hot For Peacher will be ready to consume the end of this month! Stay tuned for details on our official launch party.