PDA

View Full Version : Where on Earth does a guy get some Mead around here?



Bearsandbearsandbears
09-28-2013, 03:10 PM
Hi there everyone. I've never really genuinely liked alcoholic drinks, but I've tried lots of them. One big one I haven't tried is, obviously, Mead! I've heard lots of good things about this nectar, and I'm eager to try it. Unfortunately, any and all information pertaining to the stuff is anywhere between 3 to 12 years out of date! I've found some stores that sell the stuff, but not quite what I'm looking for. I want to try the Very Sweet mead. Unfortunately, I live in Alabama, near Montgomery, and I imagine Mead is hard to come by. Is there any way you guys can help? If I like it enough I would even consider brewing it myself!

Vance G
09-28-2013, 08:01 PM
If you would like to try a sweet mead, get crazy and make a gallon batch of JAOM or joes ancient orange mead. The recipe is easy to find. Do the original and I think you can make friends with this drink. Better than most of the stuff commercially sold as mead. Welcome and have fun

joemirando
09-28-2013, 09:11 PM
I second that. JAOM is a very good way to start. Any damned fool can go buy something. <grin>

Seriously, give it a shot. If you don't end up liking it, you're out a couple of bucks for honey and an orange. But if you DO like it... well, then you're as screwed as the rest of us and will become addicted to making "just one more batch". ;)

As an aside, most of the meads I have been able to find here commercially are actually white wine with honey added after the fact. Usually (but not always), these are designated as "Meade". Be on the lookout.

The one I found that I was sure was an actual mead was so sweat as to be unenjoyable. The specific gravity of it (a measure of how much sugar is dissolved in the liquid) was almost as high as I start out my batches.

So c'mon and take the plunge!

Medsen Fey
09-29-2013, 12:15 AM
Have they repealed the law against home-brewing in Alabama? If not, proceed with caution as it may get you in hot water.



Sent from my THINGAMAJIG with WHATCHAMACALLIT

The Meadster
09-29-2013, 01:05 AM
I believe they have repealed that law. I remember seeing a post from Northern Brewer that Alabama was the last state to finally legalize home-brewing.

Bearsandbearsandbears
09-29-2013, 01:30 AM
JAOM, hmm? Sounds good. Being new to all of this, what are some things I should look for when I go to build my brewery?

joemirando
09-29-2013, 02:09 AM
JAOM, hmm? Sounds good. Being new to all of this, what are some things I should look for when I go to build my brewery?

That's really the beautiful thing about starting with Joe's Ancient Orange; you don't need a lot of equipment to start out. You can start incredibly small and see if you like the results first. If you do, THEN you can go hog wild, even if only a little at a time.

To start out with a JAO, you really only need a few things.


Gallon Jug (aka Carboy). Glass preferred, but not strictly necessary.
An airlock with rubber stopper for above
Bottles for when the mead is done
A hydrometer (not strictly necessary for a JAO, but highly recommended)


If you have screw top bottles you can put it in once its done and have a glass gallon jug already, your total outlay of cash for equipment could be ~$12.00 (10 for the hydrometer, a buck for the airlock and about the same for the drilled stopper).

Once you do get the bug (and you will), you'll want wine yeast, energizer and nutrient, possibly acid blend, pH test strips or tester, potassium carbonate, oak chips, bentonite and/or Sparkloid for fining, glass bottles, corks, a corker, siphon tubing, campden tablets potassium sorbate, more carboys, more airlocks, more, more, more. ;)

The recipe for Joe's Ancient Orange is incredibly easy, and if you follow it to the letter you will end up with a very nice, very drinkable talking point for just about any backyard get-together or informal party.

Just start out small and build as you can/want to/need to. I started out with a JAOM in the plastic gallon jug that the spring water came in and a balloon with a pinhole in for an airlock.

Just don't do what I did and cut down on the honey in the recipe. I prefer dry wines to sweet, so I figured "how much difference can a half a pound of honey make, right?"

WRONG. It was, in technical terms, YUCKY! ;) The extra sweetness is needed to balance the bitterness. It really is an amazing recipe, and amazingly easy.

The recipe is easily found in the forum here. Just search for Joe's Ancient Orange. The search engine doesn't seem to like search terms of 4 letters or less.

Welcome to the forum from another newbee,

Joe
(No, not the joe of joe's ancient orange... I've NEVER come up with anything that good)

mannye
09-29-2013, 02:12 AM
Bottles for when the mead is done? HA! There won't be any need for bottles. Once you try it, it's GONE!

joemirando
09-29-2013, 02:18 AM
Bottles for when the mead is done? HA! There won't be any need for bottles. Once you try it, it's GONE!

Bottles? BOTTLES? We don't need on steenkin' bottles! Andale arriba! ;)

Bearsandbearsandbears
09-29-2013, 04:46 AM
Great!
I found the recipe on the Home Brew fourms.

Would it be best to use natural pollinated honey, or store bought honey?

Also are the Hidden Legend Winery meads any good? I'd be willing to try their pretty wide selection. The Kings mead they have appears to be no longer available, and that's the one I wanted most. Has anyone had that in particular?

Also, thanks for all the information! You've been very helpful and friendly.

EDIT: Actually, after a little hunting, it seem they have it in stock! I'll give it a whirl while I'm getting the brew stuff together and tell you about it!

Shelley
09-29-2013, 08:15 AM
Great!
I found the recipe on the Home Brew fourms.

Would it be best to use natural pollinated honey, or store bought honey?

Also are the Hidden Legend Winery meads any good? I'd be willing to try their pretty wide selection. The Kings mead they have appears to be no longer available, and that's the one I wanted most. Has anyone had that in particular?

Also, thanks for all the information! You've been very helpful and friendly.

EDIT: Actually, after a little hunting, it seem they have it in stock! I'll give it a whirl while I'm getting the brew stuff together and tell you about it!

Use local honey, if you can. It has nothing to do with the pollen in the honey, but the honey itself. Mass-market honey all tastes the same. Local honey doesn't because the honey takes up the characteristics of the flowers of your area. The basic sweet meads I've had from meaderies are OK; we keep returning to our cellars for a basic sweet mead because it's just better.

Disclaimer: I'm a beekeeper, so I'm biased. :)

K5MOW
09-29-2013, 08:19 AM
I believe they have repealed that law. I remember seeing a post from Northern Brewer that Alabama was the last state to finally legalize home-brewing.

Yes I think they were talking about this on basic brewing radio.

Roger

mannye
09-29-2013, 09:51 AM
Great!
I found the recipe on the Home Brew fourms.

Would it be best to use natural pollinated honey, or store bought honey?

Also are the Hidden Legend Winery meads any good? I'd be willing to try their pretty wide selection. The Kings mead they have appears to be no longer available, and that's the one I wanted most. Has anyone had that in particular?

Also, thanks for all the information! You've been very helpful and friendly.

EDIT: Actually, after a little hunting, it seem they have it in stock! I'll give it a whirl while I'm getting the brew stuff together and tell you about it!

If you can get local orange blossom honey you'll have a great mead, but if it's a hassle, don't worry about it. Store bought does fine. My first JAOM was made with OB honey I got from Amazon and it tasted awesome.

Local honey from a local beekeeper will always be the best but off the shelf isn't the end of the world...it's just more expensive and less tasty!

fatbloke
09-29-2013, 01:36 PM
Shitty death ! That Hidden Legend place has a good range to try, though I didn't notice whether they're all the same i.e. dessert meads or mediums or dry or what.....

I bet they don't do international shipping........

{edit} bugger, no mention of international on their site...