Sunday, 28 October 2012

How To Make Mead

Mead is one of the oldest alcoholic beverages in the world and was reportedly drunk by muliple cultures in ancient times from the Celts to the Ancient Egyptians. Its use was eventually replaced by fermented grains and fruits to give our current facination with wine and beers, which is a real shame because mead is incredibly easy to make at home and more importantly even easier to drink (and at an average of 14% alcoholic content its also good at getting you hammered rather quickly!)

This is a quick tuition on how to make mead. This is a basic version, you can add flavourings such as cinnamon etc if you wish.

First off, some bits you will need:

  • A gallon Demijohn
  • A gallon of spring water
  • 1.2kg of honey (raw is best, if not make sure you buy nice honey and not tesco value shit.)
  • Wine yeast
  • Yeast Nutrient
  • A airlock & bung.
  • Steriliser

Ok. Here we go, its dead simple.

Step 1

Make sure everything is cleaned. I have to admit this time around because Im using brand new equipment I just gave it a rinse, but you should ideally sterilise everything with the proper powder you get from brewing suppliers. Empty the honey into the demijohn. Some say you ought to warm the honey first but as I've got honey that has already been pasturised I didn't want the honey being any more destroyed.

(Note: Try to stop yourself from drinking 2Ibs of honey straight out of the demijohn like Winnie the Pooh.)

Step 2

Pour that water in on top. Yeah, it won't mix together, don't worry about that, we'll rectify that in a minute.

Step 3

Mix it up! I simply turned the demijohn on its side and used a finger to block the hole up whilst spinning it back and forth on the floor. Its alot easier if you heat the honey up and add to the water in parts but the problem with this is the honey will lose some of its flavour. This method doesn't take that long, but you will need to wheel it back and forth on the floor for five to ten minutes.

Step 4

Once its mixed add the yeast and nutrients as per the instructions. For a gallon it should be roughly be a teaspoon of each. And lastly, pop the bung and airlock in the top.Thats it, you are on your way to brewing the nectar of the Gods! Give it a few hours and go back to it and just put your ear to the opening and make sure that its making a slight fizz (should sound like flat coke.) The sound is the yeast creating alcoholic content and releasing carbon dioxide.

Step 5

Leave for three to six months (until it stops fizzing, the fizzing will peak at around a month or so. Once its stopped brewing, bottle up for a special occasion. Be aware of the sediment at the bottom that will be present, you don't want to be drinking that. Finally, drink and be merry! Give thanks to the great Horse Hrimfaxi, and toast to Odin!

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