Mead (part 2) April 1, 2012Posted by inspiredbywolfe in Drinks.
So a couple of months ago, I put honey and yeast into some water, shook it all up and left it to bubble quietly to itself. Over time, the liquid went clearer and clearer, and some of the pieces of orange fell to the bottom of the container. Also, a layer of dead yeast began to form at the bottom of the jar.
After two months of the mead sitting and becoming clear, I decided it was ready to sample. I filtered the mead and carefully decanted it into some clean wine bottles. It was at this point that I realised there was a fundamental flaw in my mead making plans: I didn’t know what proper mead was meant to taste like, so how was I meant to judge my mead’s success?!
There was nothing left at this point but to try the mead. I took some to my friend Antonina’s house, as she is far more experienced with beers than I am, and I thought would be a good judge of mead. We started with small servings only…
As you can see it was quite light in colour, but you could definitely see it had been made from honey. And the verdict: it was…nice! The best way I can describe it was that it was somewhat between beer and wine. It started with a very yeasty taste, but in the next couple of sips, more wine characteristics emerged. It was certainly on the dry side, not sweet at all, but was definitely tasty with the tiniest bit of fizz. Unfortunately I didn’t have anything to measure the alcohol content, but it was meant to end up at around 11 or 12%.
I am definitely going to make more mead and next time, I want to try using champagne yeast to end up with a sparkling mead. I was thinking of investing in a proper airlock for the top of the mead, but I have so many balloons left, and it worked so well last time, I may just stick with the balloons until they run out…
I must admit I am amazed that these types of experiments actually work, and I have yet to have a serious mishap in making anything involving aging, hanging, and now brewing. This reinforces to me how easy these things are – if I can make them, anyone can. In this case, I have ended up with almost 4 litres of mead to drink, which is going down remarkably well!