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Bottling a strong sparkling mead

Hi folks. I have an oak-aging mead that’s 1 month in the primary, and now 2 months on oak cubes. OG 1.100, fermented with Lalvin D47, FG yet to be measured. The airlock has been bubble-free for at least 6 weeks so I was hoping to bottle today. Assuming I get a dry mead, the ABV will probably be around 12.5-13%. My question is will a mead this strong carbonate if I prime with the same yeast? And if my FG is around 1.01 or higher am I risking bottle bombs? This only my second mead, and the last one was substantially weaker. Thx.

In my experience, yes, it will carbonate fine. However, it could take a long time. You might need to condition warm (60 or 70 F) for a couple months to get the amount of carbonation that you want.

Thanks. My house is at 70-72 deg, so the warm conditioning is no problem. I’ll probably bottle this tomorrow.

I’d consider using a different yeast for bottle carbonation. D47 has an ABV limit of around 14%. You are so close to that that the new yeast might just shut down in shock rather than push to the limit when you pitch it. EC-1118 might be a better choice. Or for an even better choice, keg the mead and bottle from the keg once carbonated. It is possible that the origional yeast shut down from alcohol poisoning (that 14% limit is achievable only if conditions are close to ideal), and if you pitch a hardier strain your bottle bomb concern may be valid. But keg carbonation will avoid that worry.

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