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Adding Wax to Seal the tops of your Mead Bottles
Wax is a great looking way to add a little bit of refined detail to your home brewed bottles of Mead. I also have this tutorial in a video you can view at the bottom of this page.
These bottles have been capped in a beautiful burgundy waxy. The color of the wax very much accentuates the color of the label and the overall effect is quite attractive. The wax comes in different colors so you should carefully consider the color of the bottle and of the label when purhasing your wax.
How to Wax Your Bottles
The Process for waxing the corks of your mead bottles is pretty simple.
You bring a pan of water to a low boil on the stove and place an empty and clean vegetable can in it. You then pour the plastic chips into the can.
It will take a little bit of time, say about 10 minutes for the wax to fully melt. So just be careful and be patient with it and stir it occasionally.
I highly recommend you wear safety equipment when doing this. The wax will get quite hot and give you a nasty burn if you spill any on yourself. I recommend long sleeves, durable work gloves, and goggles.
Now dip the bottle in the hot wax. Be careful to hold the bottle as vertical as possible so it will make a nice looking seal.
Pull the bottle up out of the hot wax and rotate it slowly for a few seconds. The wax will quickly dry . If you pull it straight up and rotate it evenly the wax will make a perfect seal on the bottle and really look great.
Some Notes and Thoughts about Wax Sealing your bottles of Mead
They make very specific wax for the sealing of wine bottles and it is generally called Bottle Seal wax beads and it is typically sold in one pound bags. This one pound bag goes quite a long way. For this tutorial I sealed 21 bottles of mead and used less than half the bag so I would imagine the bag will probably be good for 50 bottles or so which is more than ten gallons of mead.
The pound of seal wax cost about ten dollars and if it seals 50 bottles the cost increase per bottle will be about twenty cents which is not bad considering the little extra bit of elegance it adds to the bottle. I am giving these bottles out as christmas presents so it just seems like a really nice extra touch.
Where can you get bottle seal wax?
If you want to give wax sealing a try without spending too much money Amazon.com has different colors available in small 2 oz quantities:
I have some tips for you before you begin your wax sealing of the bottles. I noticed quite a big difference in how the final product looked depending on whether the corks were fully recessed in the bottles or sticking out the top a bit. When the corks protrude from the top a bit it makes for a more attractive look and if the corks are recessed down I had to double dip them to get full coverage. You can just single dip them and a bit of the cork will show on the top. It's a matter of taste depending on what you feel is more aesthetically pleasing.
The Wax is economical
During the process you are going to have scraps, drops and drips of excess wax and you shouldn't throw them out! They are still perfectly usable and you can scrape them up and throw them right back in the can of melting wax. At the end of the process you can collect them all up and put them right back in the bag to be used another day.
How to wax seal the corks on your bottles of Mead (video)
Bottling Mead: I answer some of the most common questions including "When do you know it's time to bottle your mead"?