Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Cranberry Blossom Mead

I like the idea of a mead. I grew up eating honey, I would put honey on everything until my parents stopped buying it for me because natural sugar became bad for you. The 80's were a magical time.

All of the meads I've had are far too sweet or boozy. It's hard to find a good table mead. There is not a good source of table meads as far as I know. Honey bourbon, honey beer, high alcohol meads, and honey wine; Never table meads though. What I'm hoping to get is a soft floral honey flavor with a spritzy carbonation level.

(read more after the break.)

Zymurgy has two great free articles on making mead and mastering mead fermentation. The keys to mead fermentation are finding quality honey without preservatives and to add yeast nutrient. This process is fairly straight forward and easy. One blog I read claimed it made extract brewing look easy.

10.0 oz Honey (1.0 SRM)
1.00 tsp Yeast Nutrient (Boil in the last 15 minutes.)
1.0 pkg Pasteur Champagne (Red Star)
1 Gallon Water

My process for this mead is fairly simple. I'll be boiling the water to sterilize it, and adding yeast nutrient to the water. When the water was still warm I added it to the glass carboy after sanitizing the carboy. To the warm water in the carboy I added the honey. I didn't want to boil the honey because of the aromatics I'd be losing, I added it to the warm water because I wanted it to dissolve easily. When the temp of the water normalized I added the yeast and hid this in my fermentation cubby.

For my first mead I used Cranberry Blossom Honey. This is a dark honey with a very floral sweet scent. It is sweet and vaguely reminiscent of fruits. My second mead will be made from the Orange Blossom Honey. When I get a clean carboy I will start on mead two, this will be a mead twice as strong as the first, more later.

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