PDA

View Full Version : Hops in mead



bottledwater
12-20-2003, 08:34 PM
I think that mead drinking is very different from beer drinking, but some of my friends wish that my meads would hold a head and basically be more like beer.

So I am wondering, has anyone made mead with hops? What level of success would you say was acheived? What troubles did you encounter and how might they have been avoided?

Or should I tell my friends to make their own beer?

ThistyViking
12-20-2003, 10:46 PM
Haven't made it, but I believe Tej is made with Honey and Hops IIRC, this is the Mead drink from Ethiopia. In order to hold a head mead would need a few things that I don't know if hops provide... as a matter of fact I believe that hops provides a taste balance for these things.

Beer has a high % of unfermented substances, and CO2 in super saturation. The CO2 forms the bubbles and the sugars that son't ferment form a solution that retain bubbles on the surface. While I don't make beer, my understanding is the Hops add bitterness so your not drinking something sickiningly sweet. I am not aware that they help it retain the head.

An oddball option is to add hops and invite your friends over about 3-4 days into the ferment and drink your mead straight from the primary. Personally I enjoyed "sampling" the Cyser from my first batch while in the primary bucket at about this age, and the Kraussen is the "Head" of your beer. YMMV

frob23
12-20-2003, 11:26 PM
I really don't know about foamy mead but it does not sound that out of character with me. I think if you used a lot of fruit juice, sugar, and honey it might foam. Or maybe some spices (which would include hops). But it won't be sweet so I don't know how bad you need the hops. It is pretty well known that the only way to get a sweet sparkly is with fake sweetners or forced carbonation.

But why not make a nice honeyed-beer for them? I know there are recipes for that out there? Then you know you will have the beer qualities they want with the honey taste. Probably not what you are thinking of; you want to appeal to their tastes with mead not beer. Yep, have them make their own freaking booze if they have a problem with yours. ;-)

(This is all conjecture -- except the part about making your friends brew some stuff so you can mooch off them once in a while.)

ThistyViking
12-20-2003, 11:49 PM
give them a nice introduction to homebrewing book for christmass and tell them to show you what they want by making it and giving you a sample :-)

JoeM
01-05-2004, 02:28 AM
I have had great success and rave reviews from both mead AND beer drinkers with my Braggot. Its not quite beer and not quite mead but brings with it the best qualities of both. It holds a nice head as well so its sure to please those looking for a nice foamy brew. Heres the recipe:

ngredients:
5 lbs clover honey
5 lbs light DME
¼ oz Cascade hops
8oz 40 L crystal malt
Your favorite ale yeast (i have had great success with Wyeast London Ale and American Ale yeasts)
Bottled spring water to 5 gallons final volume
5 oz dextrose to prime

I crack the crystal and steep it at 170 degrees F for 20 minutes. I then remove the grain and bring the must/wort to a boil and add the hops and malt, boil for an hour, remove from heat and dissolve the honey (You could add aroma hops at this point but i choose not to in order to preserve the aroma of the honey) I then cool, pitch, rack, prime, bottle, and age as usual. It really is a beautiful thing.

Dan McFeeley
01-17-2004, 08:09 PM
I think that mead drinking is very different from beer drinking, but some of my friends wish that my meads would hold a head and basically be more like beer.

So I am wondering, has anyone made mead with hops? What level of success would you say was acheived? What troubles did you encounter and how might they have been avoided?

Or should I tell my friends to make their own beer?

I'd agree -- mead is very different from beer. Tell them to either enjoy mead on its own merits, or brew their own beer. ;D

Interestingly, a lot of old Medieval recipes for mead included hops.

Here's a couple of Lithuanian recipes for mead which, I suspect, are very old . . . (Supplied by one of my co-workers, Casmir Petkunis II)

Mead (Midus)

1 handful juniper berries
2 nutmegs
1 handful hops
7 quarts honey
14 quarts water
1 oz yeast
1 tsp sugar

Break and crush berries and nutmeg. Tie with hops in cloth bag. Place in honey and water, boll about 1/2 hour, skimming off foam. Cool to lukewarm (about 100 degrees F.) Pour into a 5 gallon bottle. Do not overfill, allow about 4 inches space from surface to top of bottle. Cream yeast with sugar and 1/2 cup of honey-water liquid, set in warm spot for 10 - 15 minutes until it begins to bubble. Slowly pour into liquid in bottle. Stopper bottle with cork into which a glass tube (thistle tube or medicene dropper with bulb removed) has been set (to allow fermentation gases to escape). Allow to ferment at temperatures of 60 degrees no less than 6 months. At end of that period, filter off with rubber pipette or siphon, pour into botles, cork. Ready to drink a month after
bottling.

N.B. -- aging improves mead. It is at its best 2 - 3 years after making.


Mead
Ancient Recipe
Midus

2 quarts honey
5 gallons water
1/2 lb. hops
yeast
1 slice bread

Measure and pour exactly half of the honey and water into a large kettle. Using a stick, mark on the stick the distance from the top of the kettle to the surface of the contents. Pour in remaining honey and water. Bring to boil. Tie hops in clean cloth, place in kettle. Boil until one-half of the liquid remains (ascertain by using the marked measuring stick). Cool. Strain through several thicknesses of cloth into a barrel or crock. Spread enough yeast on bread to cover thickly. Place bread in liquid. Mead will begin to ferment in 3 days. Strain again, pour into bottles, set in cool spot. Mead can also be stored and aged in barrels (oaken preferably).

ThistyViking
01-19-2004, 11:42 AM
Mead
Ancient Recipe
Midus

2 quarts honey
5 gallons water
1/2 lb. hops
yeast
1 slice bread

Measure and pour exactly half of the honey and water into a large kettle. Using a stick, mark on the stick the distance from the top of the kettle to the surface of the contents. Pour in remaining honey and water. Bring to boil. Tie hops in clean cloth, place in kettle. Boil until one-half of the liquid remains (ascertain by using the marked measuring stick). Cool. Strain through several thicknesses of cloth into a barrel or crock. Spread enough yeast on bread to cover thickly. Place bread in liquid. Mead will begin to ferment in 3 days. Strain again, pour into bottles, set in cool spot. Mead can also be stored and aged in barrels (oaken preferably).

That looks Like a Good Brewday Recipe for May 1st.
Tough i think i'll boil the hops without the honey, then add the honey for a 3 gallon batch size. Any recomendation on what hops to use, I have the idea that there are many types... what would have been indiginous to lithuania a few hundred years ago that is available today?

ThistyViking
01-19-2004, 11:42 AM
oh yeah, probably will skip the bread and use some buckwheat honey.