Have a few beginner's questions for some expert "meadheads" out there. Just started a 1 gallon batch of mead and wanted to know the following:
1. When racking, is it important to minimize the oxygen exposure like with wine?
2. When bottling does the type of cap matter (I'd like to use grolsch bottles, how does this stack up to other methods)? No, air-tight bottles are necessary for long term aging but mead will last much longer than wine when exposed to air.
3. If I use a grolsch bottle and open this, how long will it keep if I just reseal it back up after I pour it? Months.
4. Do I need to top off the secondary fermenter to avoid oxygen exposure? No, even in secondary there will be some renewed fermentation. Since CO2 is heavier than O2, the O2 will be pushed out of the top of your fermenter. I keep a vapor trap on mine but it really isn't necessary. I just don't want anything crawling into my mead like spiders or ants etc.
5. How well does mead keep? Any suggestions on helping increase longevity of the mead? I have a batch that is almost a year old and it will probably keep for at least another year perhaps longer. I have friends who have been aging meads for over 5 years but I haven't tasted them.
6. Do I NEED to keep the mead from light when storing it? I do because my storage location happens to be in a closet but you don't have to. Light will not harm your mead. However, if your mead is exposed to sunlight, it may build up pressure in your bottles and I'm not sure what the results will be if your mead is going from hot to cold over and over again. So, I'd recommend keeping it from sunlight but not necessarily household light, if that makes sense.
Thanks for the help.