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TheGreenOne

The Mead Thread

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Most of our honey around here is good ol' clover honey. I've been getting a little delicious honey from a former student-turned-apiarist friend in upstate New York. His bees have survived the recent US infection just fine but understandably, his honey is in high demand and short supply. We recently received a large tub (25 lbs, I think) from friends in SW Montana which seems to have a lot of Sage and Alfalfa flavor. I'll see if I can't add a batch to your comparison opportunity. ;)

I enjoy a good traditional mead, but you can't beat the pyments and cysers. IMHO

Personally, I agree. A big pyment party usually has everyone attending toasting me a most awesome fellow and creator of the world's best mead. Well, until the next day. :devil:

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I have no idea how an extremely dark honey-based mead would compare to a very light honey-based mead. Sounds like we need to do some experimentin' though.

 

I have a traditional mead in process made from about 6 lbs buckwheat honey (molasses dark) and 10 lbs clover honey...it's almost as dark as a brown ale. It has tasted pretty good at past rackings, but it's still not clear enough to bottle. And I started it in early 2007.... I think using all dark honey could be overkill, but a certain amount gives interesting results.

 

My best mead so far was a sweet metheglin made from orange blossom honey and spiced with bitter orange rind and cloves. I haven't done much in the way or pyments or melomels, though I did make a blueberry-vanilla-cinnamon mead once (reasonably drinkable, even better for a bad cough).

 

I don't like to compare mead to wine, though I'll admit a very dry mead can be a lot like white wine. Since I tend to make medium and sweet meads, and often spice them, I consider mead a very different drink.

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We have some real pros that pass through here from time to time that make me look like a real n00b (Greywolf and Gertz).

That might be a slight exaggeration ...

 

Mead is nothing like a beer. A typical, basic recipe with about 3-4 pounds of honey per gallon would end up as something with more or less a wine strength, but if the taste should be compared to wine, it would be a very sweet one - and that wouldn't really say much about what it actually tastes like anyway.

 

I have one back home that has been standing all winter with a handful of plums thrown in. No idea what it's gonna taste like, but don't think it can go totally wrong.

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I found a local store that carries the mead that I liked to above -- gave it a try. It's pretty good, although a bit too much like wine to be a real favorite of mine. But I'm certainly going to drink the rest of the bottle, whereas with say, red wine, I just can't drink it. I'll die a beer man it seems. And as of recently, an Absinthe man. :D

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Martin Lake makes some great mead swill, too.

 

Aw, shucks. I can't take credit for that. Technically, it's the yeast that does all the work. I'm just their cafeteria lady.

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So I'm planning to make some mead. I have about 10 different mead variations I want to try.

 

I guess to start off with, though, I'll try making a pumpkin mead in time for Thanksgiving and a Christmas mead in time for Christmas. I'm thinking that I can use my peppermint tea to give the mead a Christmas flavor.

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Meads are fun and painful drinks. I have three in various stages. I may bottle the Raspberry melomel next week. Cranberry is aging gracefully (unlike me) and the cyser is pretty and clear. One of these days I'm going to drink some. I've enough honey for three more batches. I just lack inspiration. Fun stuff!

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I have both a pyment and a cran/raspberry melomel brewing.

 

My first mead attempt, a peach/raspberry melomel I made in 2006 turned out alright so I'm excited to see how these do. In fact i stored away a few bottles to let them age for a while. Any advice as to an optimal aging time? Its been just over 3 years.

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Holy crap!

 

I still have four or five gallons of just plain old mead in a carboy in the back of a closet that I started in 2007. I just don't have a good place to bottle it. I need to get a kegging system. That would be so much better.

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I have one last bottle of Maple brew that's closing in on 15 years. I want to drink it so bad!

 

 

Makes me feel like I need to get started and stash a few bottles away for retirement. :twitchsmile:

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Makes me feel like I need to get started and stash a few bottles away for retirement. :twitchsmile:

Funny. Not. While dropping off a package at the post office this week, the nice lady behind the counter asked if I had retired yet. (Great. That did my ego a world of good) Yep, it was another old student. I started thinking, I'm only about 12 years or so away from very full retirement. Perhaps I should get a few carboys of mead gently brewing away for that big party day. It should be some pretty tasty stuff by then.

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I should get a few carboys of mead gently brewing away for that big party day. It should be some pretty tasty stuff by then.

 

Ditto

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My first mead attempt, a peach/raspberry melomel I made in 2006 turned out alright so I'm excited to see how these do. In fact i stored away a few bottles to let them age for a while. Any advice as to an optimal aging time? Its been just over 3 years.

 

My guess is that, unless your melomel fermented very hot, it ought to be hitting its stride about now.

 

I love mead...I've currently got about 100 gallons in various stages of fermentation, bulk aging, or bottles. Recently I dropped way too much money on a couple gallons of meadow foam honey with which to make a traditional mead. If you've never tried it, meadow foam honey has a vanilla scent and tastes like marshmallows. It makes a wonderful mead, but it's fairly pricey.

 

I also recently started a batch using buckwheat honey and wildflower honey, in a 1/3 to 2/3rds ratio. With enough aging and nicely oaked, this honey combination makes a very good mead. Sadly, I'm down to two bottles from the previous batch. (I'm married to a Viking, which makes aging mead something of a challenge.)

 

To Anyanea: I think your plans for pumpkin and Christmas meads may be a bit ambitious unless you are planning on Thanksgiving and Christmas of 2010. In my experience, a typical batch started today will just about be ready to rack into secondary by the holidays....

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I have one last bottle of Maple brew that's closing in on 15 years. I want to drink it so bad!

 

I'd go for it, I'll bet it's incredible now, and at some point, it might actually be past its peak.

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Didn't sound like there were many fans of commercial mead, but has anyone heard of Moonlight Meadery? I saw them mentioned in Mutineer magazine.

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Haven't tried any of their stuff yet, but that was a seriously alliterative question. Strong work!

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I haven't, no. I have been so turned off by cloyingly sweet commercial meads, I don't even try 'em anymore. Let me know if you like it.

 

There are a couple of local meadmakers (and star-of-stars, BKSmithey) that make incredible brews. It's so easy to make your own which (thus far) is far better than the commercial offerings I've tried, why bother? Maybe I'm just jaded spoiled.

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It really did give me a chuckle. So much so that I read it out-loud several times while giggling.

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I've only tried two batched of mead. I really need to get some more batches started. I was describing my favorite cyser to someone yesterday, she sounded very interested in trying some of it sometime. I need to figure out how to replicate it first though.

 

Maybe I'm just jaded spoiled.

 

Brewed? Pitched? Racked?

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And many more things, I'm sure.

 

I have a little prickly pear mead left. Tastes really good and the color never fails to surprise the hell out me. Really cool stuff.

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How'd you score that? Supposedly my brother has a bottle of some made by a friend of his. He said it didn't taste good, but his palate is different from mine.

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I haven't, no. I have been so turned off by cloyingly sweet commercial meads, I don't even try 'em anymore. Let me know if you like it.

 

Yeah I'm not big on the sweet stuff, I would be trying something categorized as dry, which even in mead terms I'm sure I'll find sweet!

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