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MrMooCow
05-22-2011, 11:56 AM
Stupid question of the day.... well, perhaps a stupid clarification. ;)

Somewhere, I could have sworn I read that the definition of mead was alcohol with 51% fermentable sugar from honey. However, the glossary simply says with the primary source being from honey. I thought there was something in the BJCP, but couldn't find anything quantitative.

So.... Does that mean the honey simply has to be the largest single contributer? Or that the majority of all sugars combined must come from honey? IE, would an alcohol that is 40% honey, 30% grain, 30% fruit still be mead of some sort? Or does it in fact have to be 51% honey?

Thanks!

- Brett

TheAlchemist
05-22-2011, 11:59 AM
Or, what about an acerglyn that is >50% sugar from maple? Is that a mead?

wayneb
05-22-2011, 12:43 PM
By BJCP definition, a mead is a beverage containing fermentables that are "primarily" from honey. That's a somewhat ambiguous statement (especially since I'm paraphrasing a bit) but generally that is taken to mean that more than 50% of the fermentables in any recipe referrred to as a mead must be from honey.

TheAlchemist
05-22-2011, 12:50 PM
By BJCP definition, a mead is a beverage containing fermentables that are "primarily" from honey. That's a somewhat ambiguous statement (especially since I'm paraphrasing a bit) but generally that is taken to mean that more than 50% of the fermentables in any recipe referrred to as a mead must be from honey.

What if you just don't honestly know how much sugar is from honey and how much is from maple?

wayneb
05-22-2011, 01:37 PM
Then I'd say it is OK to call it a mead if there is some detectable honey presence in the final result. When all the dust settles, after all, the BJCP "rules" are really just guidelines, although the more A.R. among us tend to split hairs over their interpretation. Strict interpretation may be necessary for organized events like competitions, but otherwise, you are free to follow them or not.

Just don't try serving a "mead" that has only a minute amount of honey in it to some folks who have set themselves up as "experts," or you're likely to hear about it. Such is the character of human nature - there are those of us who must follow rules (and ensure that others do) in order to stay in their particular comfort zones, and those of us who would rather say, "Rules... what rules??"

Can you guess what camp I happen to fall into? ;D

kudapucat
05-22-2011, 10:07 PM
Strict rules of competition aside, when ppl ask me what the difference between a Braggot and a Honey Beer is, I say it depends on what the brewer is trying to make. If he's brewing a mead variant, then it's a mead (Braggot) if he's a beer brewer who's adding honey (even if it's heaps) then it's a beer.
Because the taste is likely to be what you're trying to brew. You may add HEAPs of honey, cos the grain flavour is so strong, or you may add heaps of grain cos the honey is so strong, both end up with a 50/50ish mix, but the first is a beer, and the second a Braggot.

in the end, it is what it tastes like ;-)

AToE
05-23-2011, 03:43 AM
I agree with that, the actual ratio doesn't make nearly as much difference as the types of malt vs types of honey. Wayne's Braggot-docio I used a fair amount of buckwheat to cut through all the malts, and even then it's pretty similar to a strong dark double.

TheAlchemist
05-23-2011, 12:33 PM
"Rules... what rules??"

Can you guess what camp I happen to fall into? ;D

Ha! I'm with you, Wayne!