From the HBD Archive
From: Mark N. Davis <mndavis@pbhya.PacBell.COM>
Subject: Re: Mead questions
Date: 1992-07-10 00:05:51 GMT

> From: gkushmer@Jade.Tufts.EDU
> Subject: Question on mead (Have I won it? :)
>
> I've noticed that mead, when purchased in stores or in restaurants, is a
> rather expensive drink. The Boston Beer Works sells it for $3.95 a glass
> (and the glasses are wine-size thingies) while a friend of mine buys
> it for $90 a case.
> {...deleted...}
> Is there something more at work here than market forces in keeping
> store-bought so high? Or is this a grab-your-ankles routine?

>From what I've experienced with my meads, they really don't even start to
get *GOOD* until after at least 6 months, a year is even better. Compare this
to the amount of time that the breweries can kick out malt brews and you can
see where the cost of making mead is more expensive.
I'm sure that the old supply and demand theory comes into play as well, since
mead is far from popular as a commercial product.
>
> ------------------------------
>
> From: smith%8616.span@Fedex.Msfc.Nasa.Gov
> Subject: mead, JSbashing
>
> For various reasons, I've been making quick meads lately instead of beers,
> using a base of 5 lb honey for a 5 gallon batch and throwing in various
> spices and/or fruits. Now, this stuff is good in its own way (not having
> tasted anybody else's mead, I can't compare it), but it seems quite thin.
> How can one add "body" to a quick mead? Add a little DME? More fruit?

My guess is that the key problem here is the *quick* part. Honey is a
notoriously slow fermenter, and even after fermentation tends to improve
with age. Part of that improvement is a perceived thickness. My first batch
of mead was made with only 5 lbs honey, and even after severe aging (I'll
be celebrating the remaining 4 bottles 3rd birthday soon - by drinking one!)
they are still thin compared to my batch made with 7.5 lbs of honey.

> Is this a fruitless quest? *ducks* Note that I don't give a FFAARD about
> standard styles, I just want a nice summer beverage that doesn't take
> more than a month to complete. 1 1/2 gallons of frozen blackberries,
> a jug of honey, several million yeasties and I await your suggestions....

Try this recipe:
1 qt boiling water
4 tea bags
lots of ice
sugar to taste

This is a real quick recipe that is very satisfying on a hot day. I guess
you could substitue honey for the sugar to get that *mead* taste >:-)
But seriously, as far as I know, there is no one month recipe for mead if
you plan on using honey (is there any other way?), but if anyone else knows
of one I'd be very interested to here it.

Do they make steroids for yeast?

Mark


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