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I'm using this recipe for a start

http://www.winepress.us/forums/index.php?showtopic=6114 (Joe Mattioli's Ancient Orange and Spice Mead)

1 gallon batch 

3 1/2 lbs Clover or your choice honey or blend (will finish sweet) 
1 Large orange (later cut in eights or smaller rind and all) 
1 small handful of raisins (25 if you count but more or less ok) 
1 stick of cinnamon 
1 whole clove ( or 2 if you like - these are potent critters) 
optional (a pinch of nutmeg and allspice )( very small ) 
1 teaspoon of Fleishmann’s bread yeast ( now don't get holy on me 
     --- after all this is an ancient mead and that's all we had back then) 
Balance water to one gallon 

I would like to replace (all or some of) the spices with ginger, but I do not have any idea how much should it be. How can I estimate a sensible amount to use in order to have a pleasant distinctive (but not excessive) flavor?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

Not sure if this an answer, but why not make a ginger extract and add post-fermentation to taste? You essentially have two possible methods, the first being preferable:

1.) Make a tincture with the ginger. Chop it or puree it finely, then add vodka or grain alcohol, cover and rest for one week, put through a strainer, and add the homemade extract in small doses until you like the way it tastes

2.) Same method, but add the chopped ginger to water, bring to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes or so. Again, add to taste. The downside is some of the volatile aromatics might boil off.

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Now that just sounds like a fun idea! +1 – thanby Jan 23 '13 at 19:38

It ultimately depends on which ingredient you substitute for it, if you do sub and not just add. Cloves for example are pretty strong, so if you left them out it would take less ginger to have an effect. It also depends on the source of the ginger (from the actual root? liquid extract? powdered?) but if you're just going with easy-to-find-and-manage ingredients, I would estimate about 1.5 to 2 tbsp of powdered or crushed ginger would do the trick without being overwhelming. That's a good strong amount, but no matter which way you stack it this meade is going to be pretty flavor-packed, so it will take more ginger than average to give the "distinctive" flavor you are looking for.

Hope that helps!

That recipe actually sounds pretty interesting, I might have to try it out! :)

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