On the drive in to work this morning I had been musing a bit about the relative success of the carbonation of the batch of African Skies versus the batch of root beer, and it occured to me that I had once heard that honey had some antiseptic properties. So I finally got a few minutes free at work and started to do some net research, and there it was: Honey as a topical antibacterial agent for treatment of infected wounds, among other references.
Of course the African Skies carbonated less/more slowly than the root beer once the temperature was in the right range! The honey was killing off some of the yeast. The question then becomes, do I increase the yeast or decrease the concentration of honey in a batch of soda that uses honey as a sweetener? Are there yeasts that are going to be better or worse for carbonating in solution with honey? Hopefully more answers will be relatively easy to get through research and experimentation. For example, I would imagine that the yeasts used to produce mead, (if, in fact, yeast is used, which I’m not sure about) would be much more resistant to the antiseptic effects of honey, but then there is the question about whether they would produce the correct carbonation or not.