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JB175
10-19-2009, 09:43 PM
I wanted to give a huge thanks to the gotmead community - especially the heavy hitters (Oskaar, wayneb, Wrathwilde, MedsenFey and all the others) - but also all the others from the newbees on up. I finally decided to enter a competition and managed to grab a Gold and Silver for the two meads I entered - a Gravenstein Cyser and an Acerglyn (see http://www.winepress.us/forums/index.php?showtopic=38410&hl=winefest )

After screwing around with mead a bit I finally decided to join up here and become a patron two years ago. Like a lot of people I just wanted something that tasted maybe half as good as the commercial meads I tried. I skimmed Ken Schramm's book (and read it cover to cover a few times later on), looked at some recipes, and tried a few batches before joining up and really taking advantage of all the site has to offer. Gotmead really got my mead and winemaking juices flowing and I continued to study and learn more.

A competition is just based on opinions of others and really means nothing, but it really says something that a mead can score better than so many homemade wines from dedicated home winemakers. Having something my friends, family and I enjoy kicking back and drinking is an even bigger reward. If you are poking around or are just a casual member here do your self a favor and a) become a patron and b) take the advice thats given out by the experienced members of the site Anyone can make a batch of rocket fuel with advice from the LHBS, but the treasure trove of information on this site will take you much further.

To all who ask questions and answer them....THANKS!

wildoates
10-19-2009, 10:00 PM
Congratulations!

/clink:occasion18::occasion14:

Oskaar
10-19-2009, 10:12 PM
Right on dude! Keep up the good work!

wayneb
10-19-2009, 10:28 PM
Way to go!! Congrats!!!!

Medsen Fey
10-20-2009, 08:57 AM
Congratulations! It sounds like you made some great mead.

Have you posted up those recipes yet?

afdoty
10-20-2009, 11:51 AM
Very nice, JB. Congradulations!

Angelic Alchemist
10-20-2009, 01:04 PM
WOOT!

I agree about taking the advice of the mentors. I know I can be a bit of a spitfire, but I'm (once again) learning that consistent results are more important than power when it comes to the science (and art) of interests such as this one.

Congrats, dude.

Yo momma
10-20-2009, 03:42 PM
I have yet to enter mine in a contest, not brave enough, however I second the inspiring speech you just made. The info here is 2nd to none. The people here are as great as the numbers of newbees they help become mead makers such as ourselves.

Gratz on the medals. Would love to see those recipes.

AToE
10-20-2009, 04:07 PM
I'd enter in the Mazer cup just for the score card info - even if I came in dead last, having tasters of that level give a detailed score of my meads would be MORE than worth the entrance fee.:)

capoeirista13
10-20-2009, 04:36 PM
Congrats man!

Angelic Alchemist
10-20-2009, 05:28 PM
I have yet to enter mine in a contest, not brave enough, however I second the inspiring speech you just made. The info here is 2nd to none. The people here are as great as the numbers of newbees they help become mead makers such as ourselves.

Gratz on the medals. Would love to see those recipes.

Ditto. I was so moved I decided to suck it up and become a patron. I can live on ramen and oatmeal until thursday when I get paid. It's worth it. :)

afdoty
10-20-2009, 05:31 PM
Ditto. I was so moved I decided to suck it up and become a patron. I can live on ramen and oatmeal until thursday when I get paid. It's worth it. :)

Look at you!!!! :blob1:

Angelic Alchemist
10-20-2009, 06:09 PM
Look at you!!!! :blob1:

Moving up in the world...or at least, faking it really well!

Oskaar
10-20-2009, 10:19 PM
Thank you very much for supporting the site, I know that everyone is feeling the stress of the economy and that some things have to be postponed until times get better. I also know you'll feel good about your investment, and it will continue to pay dividends throughout the year.

We're happy to have you aboard as a Patron!

Cheers,

Oskaar

Angelic Alchemist
10-20-2009, 11:16 PM
I seem to have a keen ability for unconsciously changing subjects to focus on me. Seriously, I don't want to hijack the thread away from JB's well-deserved accolades, but I would like to thank you for the kind notes. I've had to be very careful about where I spend my money due to changes in my health and career track over the last year. You've all been so generous and asked for nothing in return. I respect that. Offering patronage was the least I could do. :)

wildoates
10-20-2009, 11:23 PM
Sorry, AA, but it's all about ME. :)

I don't have the chutzpah to enter my mead in a comp either...at least not yet. I need to taste more to see what the good stuff tastes like first.
Having something my friends, family and I enjoy kicking back and drinking is an even bigger reward.That's what I'm looking forward to.

JB175
10-21-2009, 02:01 AM
Have you posted up those recipes yet?[/QUOTE]


Will do ASAP - my red wine ferments seem to have monopolized my evening

AToE
10-21-2009, 02:48 PM
I wonder if "AA" is the most apropriate nickname for someone brewing booze... might be an ill omen.;););)

Angelic Alchemist
10-21-2009, 02:53 PM
I wonder if "AA" is the most apropriate nickname for someone brewing booze... might be an ill omen.;););)

Wanna hear something really funny? I DON'T DRINK!

AToE
10-21-2009, 02:55 PM
Wanna hear something really funny? I DON'T DRINK!

What? Another one? (wildoats also)... I thought you said you made it sweet because you liked it sweet though? Who's drinking all this brew of yours?!

Angelic Alchemist
10-21-2009, 03:20 PM
Um...I'm a somewhat well-known gal on the Southern Ren Fest circuit. I set up the fireworks at the big shows here in East Texas and have a soap/herb shop at some of the smaller fairs. That means I have LOTS of friends & acquaintances who enjoy drinking mead and heartily support my hobby. Of course, there's no shortage of fight club referrences or jokes about the local pseudo-speakeasy being run by the explosives expert.

And I DO like it sweet! Ruby port was my fav back in the ole’ drinking days! Anyhoo, beggars can't be choosers: the people who fuss about my style are the people who get cut off first! Though, honestly, the only complaints I get are that my creations are too strong. Lightweights. :rolleyes:

wildoates
10-22-2009, 10:47 AM
Pansies.

Besides...if they don't like it, they can go elsewhere. Hmmmpf.
:cool:

So do you get the why do you make it if you don't drink comments alla time?

Medsen Fey
10-22-2009, 11:24 AM
Wanna hear something really funny? I DON'T DRINK!

If you don't drink, how do you know if it tastes good before you share it? Sip and spit? :eek:

Angelic Alchemist
10-22-2009, 11:35 AM
If you don't drink, how do you know if it tastes good before you share it? Sip and spit? :eek:

I used to spit, but it's not an effective method of tasting. So I take tiny tastes. I figure if I can take an herbal tincture (herbs soaked in vodka), drink kombucha, use mouthwash, take cough medicine, or eat a reduction sauce (the ETOH does not all burn off - that's a myth), then the tiny amount of ETOH in a taste of homebrew isn't going to harm me.

Oskaar
10-22-2009, 03:29 PM
...snip...(the ETOH does not all burn off - that's a myth), ...snip....

OK, I'm intrigued and know that there is not a complete elimination of alcohol in flaming, but in most cases that's not the goal. Alcohol (EtOH) is consumed and largely eliminated as fuel during the flaming off which will concentrate the flavor of the spirit being used, and significantly reduce the content of the alcohol.


...snip...I used to spit, but it's not an effective method of tasting. ...snip....

Again, I'm intrigued. To my knowledge the taste buds are limited to the mouth and epiglottis, so drinking doesn't really buy you anything. In my experience, and based on the basic and advanced training courses I've taken over the years. Coating the soft-palate, tongue and epiglottis with what is being tasted properly, takes practice, and spitting does not in any way detract from that experience. In fact, when judging it is necessary in order to give due consideration to a full flight of entries. Especially if you have to taste/judge several flights of mead, beer or wine over the course of an entire day.

Cheers,

Oskaar

akueck
10-22-2009, 04:02 PM
OK, I'm intrigued and know that there is not a complete elimination of alcohol in flaming, but in most cases that's not the goal. Alcohol (EtOH) is consumed and largely eliminated as fuel during the flaming off which will concentrate the flavor of the spirit being used, and significantly reduce the content of the alcohol.

I got the impression that she meant just boiling, not flambe-ing. Even so, I would be surprised if all the alcohol was consumed in the flames--there is a lower limit to the concentration of fuel (vapor) that will actually burn. I imagine it's a pretty small amount for ethanol though. Just don't tell the folks in Maine. ;)

Angelic Alchemist
10-22-2009, 04:19 PM
OK, I'm intrigued and know that there is not a complete elimination of alcohol in flaming, but in most cases that's not the goal. Alcohol (EtOH) is consumed and largely eliminated as fuel during the flaming off which will concentrate the flavor of the spirit being used, and significantly reduce the content of the alcohol.



Again, I'm intrigued. To my knowledge the taste buds are limited to the mouth and epiglottis, so drinking doesn't really buy you anything. In my experience, and based on the basic and advanced training courses I've taken over the years. Coating the soft-palate, tongue and epiglottis with what is being tasted properly, takes practice, and spitting does not in any way detract from that experience. In fact, when judging it is necessary in order to give due consideration to a full flight of entries. Especially if you have to taste/judge several flights of mead, beer or wine over the course of an entire day.

Cheers,

Oskaar

Man, you guys are sharp! I love it.

In regards to the first question: I don't drink for spiritual reasons as of 3 years ago, but I'm not strict about it. According to several of the world's traditions, the consumption of intoxicants or brewed beverages is prohibited (Buddhists, Mormons, etc.) Some strict followers of said traditions will avoid foods prepared with ETOH, while others don't because there is a myth about the ETOH burning off -- hence they use the myth to justify consuming the food. In truth, the ETOH does NOT all burn off. While the ETOH is reduced, there is still ETOH in the finished product. I eat foods prepared with ETOH because I like the way they taste. I am aware that they have some ETOH content, but I'm not overly concerned about it since the content does not affect me in an intoxicating fashion. I guess what I'm saying is that it's a personal choice, but I feel it's important that I make informed choices rather than fooling myself into thinking something is true so I can continue to pat myself on the back for being a good girl.

In regards to tasting, allow me to rephrase: spitting is not an effective method of tasting for me. I don't know if it's just the way I'm built of if my technique is poor, but the bitter and sour taste receptors of my tongue are so far in the back of my mouth that I can't help but let a few drops trickle down the back of my throat when I pass a sample of mead across the full length of my palate. Also, when I take time to breathe with a sample in my mouth in order to get the full aromatic experience, some goes down my throat. It's either that, or gag. Trust me, I've done both and swallowing is better. For me.

I've had samples of mead where I thought it was a great bottle using the spitting technique, only to find MAJOR flaws in the same bottle using the tiny taste technique. I realize that judges have far superior training to an enthusiast like I, but I can't honestly say that I spit out all the mead that goes in my mouth if I've tasted it in a manner that gives me a complete opinion of the sample. Human beings are very diverse, including the palate, so I'm sure there is a good amount of variation in not only mechanics of the mouth but also in chemical receptor type/concentration/etc. Like this broccoli study, for example!

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2006/09/060918165721.htm

Thanks for keeping me on my toes! :)

Wannabe
10-22-2009, 04:22 PM
I ran across an article just a few weeks ago in reference to cooking with alcohol and the amount residual amount and found it quite amazing how much alcohol was retained. There was a study that showed as much as 75% of the alcohol is still present after flaming food. I'm not sure if I can attach the link legally but if you do a search on "Minnesota Nutrition Council Newsletter" and alcohol you can find the study results. Also, this information is repeated in a Wikipedia entry "Cooking with Alcohol" under the section "Alcohol in finished food".

It was very surprising to me.

Love your site!!

Cheers,
Ken

Oskaar
10-22-2009, 07:28 PM
AA, great article. I'll have to read it more thoroughly when I have a free moment.

Good information Wannabee, I'll check that link.

I'm off to imbibe lots of EtOH for my Parents' 60th Wedding Anniversary!

JB175
10-22-2009, 08:56 PM
Recipes are now posted - if anyone is looking for a cyser they can do with store-bought ingredients, the gravenstein is a tasty option


http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php?p=131852#post131852

http://www.gotmead.com/forum/showthread.php?t=15076