Mead is simply honey wine. It is honey and water that have undergone the yeast fermentation process. It falls into a separate category of its own, in between wine and beer. It can be sipped similar to wine, champagne, and apple cider vinegar.
Mead is a type of vintage wine with an alcohol content between 8 and 20 percent. Along with being a commonly selected beverage in England, Germany, Ethiopia, and South Africa, it is well-liked throughout Eastern Europe. Even before wine, mead is thought to have been the first semi-sweet alcoholic drink created and consumed by humans. Making mead is simple – it is still prepared by hand in many regions and is notably thought by many mead makers to have many medicinal benefits.
Beginners Guide To Making Mead
The mead-making process is reasonably simple. It is all about the art of combining honey and water for fermentation with the aid of yeast nutrients.
Making homemade mead has several benefits. It helps you pick up a new activity and gives you complete control over the ingredients in your mead. Making mead is also a fantastic way to refine your homebrewing capabilities.
Are you looking forward to trying your hand at brewing mead? It’s easy. Read on and get started.
When brewing mead at home, you don’t need a lot of tools. A rubber lock and a one-gallon fermentation container are basic requirements. However, it is preferable to get a mead-making kit that comes with all the necessary tools mentioned below, alongside a sterilizer, yeast packet, and a mead recipe.
- Cleaner or Steriliser
- Superior quality honey like orange blossom honey
- One container of wine yeast
- Some fruit, depending on the recipe
The basic brewing process for making homemade mead
There are countless mead recipes online. Some may seem more complicated than others. However, the majority of them adhere to the same standards. The procedure for making a good mead is as follows:
Step 1: Whether it is a barrel or glass carboy, combine honey, yeast, and water in the selected container.
Step 2: Stir some extra nutrients and wine yeast into the honey water combination. Fruit and raisins might provide supplementary nourishment.
Step 3: The next thing is to attach the rubber stopper to your fermentation bucket and wait. Yeast will convert sugar into carbon dioxide and ethanol. The stopper makes sure that no impurities enter while allowing CO2 to exit. Depending on the mixture and the temperature, the initial fermentation could last anywhere from two weeks to a month at the least.
Step 4: You can tell the first fermentation is complete when the bubbling slows. Leave the sediment behind and transfer the mead to a different bucket or vessel. Let it sit undisturbed in a dark place for about a month or so.
Step 5: The mead improves over time. Once it’s ready, bottle up your fermented beverage.
Mead gets better with age, much like most alcoholic beverages. However, you can consume it just after it’s ready. Usually, most people wait at least three months before drinking it. However, If you consume the mead right away, as some people do, don’t be shocked if it tastes different after a few months of bottling.
Top 6 Things You Didn’t Know About Mead: The Mead Guide
Mead may be among the world’s oldest alcoholic beverages
Evidence of mead fermentation predating wine and beer has been found in Chinese ceramics from 7000 BCE. Early hunter-gatherers probably drank the contents of spring water or tap water runoff beehive that had organically fermented with the intervention of airborne microbes and other bacteria when they made the first batch of mead. The Mayans, the Vikings, the Egyptians, the Ancient Greeks, and the Romans all enjoyed mead after the knowledge of how to make it with proper equipment had been discovered.<
Mead’s flavor variates a lot depending on the honey variety
Only a meager tenth of a teaspoon of honey is produced daily by a single honeybee. Each drop is valuable because most meads require roughly two gallons of sweet substance. The type of honey used affects the overall flavor and aroma of the mead and can change depending on the specific nectar and pollen diet of a honey bee. While milder honey, like orange blossom, is frequently used in traditional mead, wildflower, berry, and buckwheat honey work well with stronger flavored meads.
Mead is referred to as the drink of the gods
Ancient Greeks believed that mead was a mist that was brought down from the sky by bees, and they referred to it as the “honeydew of the gods.” In many European civilizations where bees were revered as the messengers of the gods, mead was subsequently associated with longevity and other miraculous attributes, such as power and knowledge on par with those of Gods. Because of this, mead continued to play a big part in Greek celebrations even after it lost its position as a drink in the end.
Calories in mead
While low-ABV mead is available, it is important to remember that just honey contains a lot of sugar in addition to being healthy in many ways. Mead can contain more than 300 calories and 40g of carbohydrates in only two ounces, which is more than some maple syrup.
However, if you’re watching your intake, it is crucial to know how much sugar it contains and accordingly use the following advice to choose the mead with the fewest.
- Meads with additional flavors can taste fantastic. Although they might increase calorie intake, added fruit, flavoring, and other additions are great ways to bring diversity to mead. When fruit juice is added to a finished mead, it is possible to leave it unfermented, which means the fruit juice’s calories are added to the mead’s underlying calories.
- Another thing to consider when choosing a low-calorie meal is that there will be more calories in a mead if it contains residual sweetness (unfermented sugar that imparts a sense of sweetness). The leftover sugar adds a sweet flavor but also more calories, much like the fruit juice.
Mead has a diverse variety- sweet mead and dry mead
Mead varieties can be categorized as dried, sweet, or effervescent. Mead has a huge and bizarre family in terms of the ingredients that are mixed. Starting off with Metheglin, it is made with grapes and is something you are already familiar with. Next is Melomel, a mead that also contains fruit juices like blueberries and raspberries. There are also innumerable additional varieties, like Acerglyn, Braggot, and Rhodomel, made by fusing different elements.
Mead Day, observed on the very first Saturday in August, raises awareness and promotes unity among mead producers. Wherever mead is found, a proud tradition, a thriving craft, and a trade industry follow. Mead, one of the oldest fermented drinks in existence, is also known as honey wine, ambrosia, or nectar.
With honey production in full swing, Mead Day highlights its essential component and the age-old craft that surrounds it.
Mead Day was established to promote cooperation among mead producers and to increase public understanding of the complex art, and vibrant trade of this beverage.
Health Benefits Associated With Mead
There is a long tradition of advocating moderate alcohol consumption; however, this isn’t totally true for mead. Even though Mead is potentially anti-inflammatory, useful for treating respiratory infections, and could help with gastrointestinal issues.
However, it is important to note that there is no clinical study that conclusively demonstrates this. But mead has some characteristics that make it an intriguing mixture to examine just from a health perspective. Mead has all-natural ingredients without gluten and zero nitrites, which makes it good for consumption.
Risks of excess mead consumption
Alcohol consumption and mead intake in excess can have detrimental effects on one’s health. Additionally, the drink’s alcohol content or honey may cause allergic reactions in people who are sensitive to these substances. Mead’s honey content also causes diarrhea. Apart from that, diabetes sufferers should exercise caution while consuming mead because research suggests that honey consumption may increase levels of glycated hemoglobin, which may result in diabetes complications. Mead typically includes 12 to 20 percent alcohol, which is harmful to the health of the liver.
Mead is one of the most magnificent beverages since it is both sophisticated and simple. Its heritage is as extensive as the sweetness of honey. The drink was a favorite of ancient monarchs and the nobility. It is also gaining popularity with people who want something different from their usual martinis. You might pause and reflect on the fact that you are sipping something that is not just legendary but perhaps possibly magical as you try mead for the first time or enjoy your subsequent glass.