View Full Version : Great Lakes Mead Tasting

08-16-2006, 01:52 AM
I Must Regretfully Announce That
The Great Lakes Mead Tasting
Is Canceled!!!

After having messaged everybody who was initially interested in attending the mead tasting, approximately half claimed that because of other things cropping up they wouldn't be able to attend, the other half failed to respond at all. Which brings the total number of people who actually confirmed that they were going to attend to two, Myself and another brewer here in Dubuque. And since we don't need to travel to taste each others mead there's no point in us going.

Maybe we'll try again next year. But you people have got to be more committed, and be prepared to spring for a more luxurious hotel. It won't be held at Indian Oaks.

-Jered (Wrathwilde)

08-16-2006, 05:32 AM
I'm not sure if my limited experience as a mazer would qualify me to Host the event, but I would certainly plan on attending in April 2007 - as long as it doesn't coincide with Easter week as I'll be in Florida during that time.

I should have a (hopefully) decent selection of meads that would be between 8-12 months old at that time including:

Oaked Tri-Berry
Sweet Vanilla
Cyser (hopefully NOT from hell)
Canadian Acerglyn
French Colombard Pyment
Blue-On-Blue Melomel
Not-So-Quick Mead
JoeM's Basic Braggot <----<< edited to include this one !

Sounds like a great idea Wrath ! Somewhere in the area you describe would be fine.


08-16-2006, 07:12 AM
Yes, we are up for it. I would prefer to stay the hell away from Chicago, though. It's a little mad, there... A nice, rural hotel setting would be divine.

I don't know what it's like in Illinois or Indiana, but I do know that here in Blow-hio, there are tons of nice, cheap places to rent a cabin in the woods and blow off some steam. My wife and I were actually married at a place called Hocking Hills, and we did the whole shebang for less than a couple o' grand. And we've been back, since.

We actually rented a cabin with two other couples down there, and after we had purchased beer and food (lots and lots of both) we had only spent around 200 bones per couple. The cabins are huge and cheap, if you know where to look. April-ish is sort of "off season," there, so it would be ridiculously cheap. My avatar is a picture of a "morning after" from that trip...

Anyways, I know that there are tons of places like that all over the place. I'd drive to the Upper Peninsula for a tasting!

Anyways, just my thoughts... I'm just thinking that, since there will be some imbibrification involved (Yes, I made that up, just now...) we should try to locate an area where we can raise some proverbial "Hell," and not get arrested for our efforts. I'm out of the "night in jail" game...

08-16-2006, 08:37 AM
Absolutely up for it! April also sounds like the best time for me.

The Chicago area would be a very good meeting place due to its somewhat easy access for most and central location. Lake Michigan is a bit of a hindrance for those having to drive around it, so having the tasting near the bottom will give the most people the least hassle, I think.

Also, since we are so close to Michigan, we could perhaps entice a certain Mead author to pop down for a meet and greet ;)


08-16-2006, 09:00 AM
Angus, my man, I'm all for the "Chicago Area," just so long as that doesn't mean "Chicago..." I am absolutely against driving through that city EVER AGAIN.

I'm a country boy, to say the least. Are there any state parks around there? Maybe a lake we can throw a line in?

I'll check when I get a chance...

08-16-2006, 10:17 AM
It turns out that Illinois is rather tourist-friendly.

I've found a few neat places in Galena, which is near that big river thing that flows through the center of the country... Not much room, though, although the places seem to be reasonably priced. One of them is at an actual vineyard... THAT could be dangerous!

Anyways, I'll keep everyone posted. I think I'll sick my wife on this one. She's good at this sort of thing.

08-16-2006, 11:04 AM
Try northern Indiana. It is more centrally located and will give those who are more in the OH/MI/PA area a better chance to turn up. Somewhere like Arbor Lights (ftp://http://www.cottages.org/properties/IN-Monticello-ArborLightsResort.htm) or better yet Timber Line (ftp://http://www.cottages.org/properties/IN_Monticello_BigTimber.htm). There is also Madonna Resort (ftp://http://www.cottages.org/properties/IN-Monticello-MadonnaResort.htm) and Sheilah's Hideaway (ftp://http://www.cottages.org/properties/IN-Monticello-SheilasHideAway.htm).


08-16-2006, 12:26 PM
Sounds like a great idea. But probably unlikely for me in the near future.
I think some sort of state park would be a great idea. Lots of outdoor fun and much cheaper than staying in a hotel somewhere.

David Baldwin
08-16-2006, 03:30 PM
Indiana Dunes State Park is a great place to stay but alcohol is forbidden there.

Actually ScottS and I have been talking about an informal mead tasting for quite a while.

For any who don't know yet, Scott is probably the newest commercial mazer among us. check out www.vonameadery.com

I'm very interested in a mead and greet in the Great Lakes area. I don't think that this Fall will work for me, but a year from now could be great fun.


08-16-2006, 05:03 PM
Here's yet another Michigander, albeit I'm on the north end of that lake.

As for suggestions for a place to meet, The west side of Michigan has some wine country. Granted, it's not exactly centeralized for convienience.

08-16-2006, 09:02 PM
I forgot that I'll have 48 Grolsch bottles primed and aged for 8 months JoeM's Basic Braggot that I can bring along also (well, maybe not ALL 48 bottles) ;D

08-16-2006, 09:24 PM
Where are you in MI, Kash? I have a buddy with a "cabin" outside of Petosky. That's a fun little town... Lake Walloon is a fun place, too... Aah. Memories...

I'll never forget my first trip up there. On the way up 75 (I think...) There were signs that said something to the effect of "You're near a prison. Don't pick up hitchhikers, especially if they're wearing stripes."

While I've seen many of those, since, that was the first one I ever laid eyes on... It gave me quite a chuckle.

08-17-2006, 05:33 PM
Where are you in MI, Kash? I have a buddy with a "cabin" outside of Petosky. That's a fun little town... Lake Walloon is a fun place, too... Aah. Memories...

I'll never forget my first trip up there. On the way up 75 (I think...) There were signs that said something to the effect of "You're near a prison. Don't pick up hitchhikers, especially if they're wearing stripes."

While I've seen many of those, since, that was the first one I ever laid eyes on... It gave me quite a chuckle.

To be correct, I'm not really on the northern shore or Lake Michigan, I'm on the southern shore of Lake Superior. It's real easy to find, just go to the end of the earth, and I'm two miles past that.

Petosky is still "mitten" country, I'm in the Yoop. While this does make me far from everywhere, at least I get to decide what side of Lake Michigan I need to travel down.

Dan McFeeley
08-18-2006, 02:55 AM
Hello all --

I'm down in southern Illinois, about an hour's drive from Chicago. The idea sounds great but I doubt I can make it. We're a two income family, my wife and I swap off taking care of our daughter, and it's hard to get time off at the hospital I work at without scheduling it way way in advance.

I'll be keeping an eye on this thread in case things change. It'd be great meeting some of the forum members in person!

08-18-2006, 09:02 AM
Kash, you live, according to my father, in "God's Country." He spent several summers at Lake Millekokea. (I hope I spelled that right...)

He also mentioned that the mosquitos up there could carry a person away...

Dan Mc, I think the tasting would be better served by being put off until sometime next year. We wouldn't be able to make it this year, anyways... I'm thinking that April would be a great time.

Baldwin, I've heard that the Dunes are pretty cool, but if alcohol is prohibited there, then it can't be that great...

I think we can probably find a reasonably-priced rental cabin-type thing within the next several months... I can only speak for my wife and myself, but we really don't mind staying with other people, especially since it saves so much on cost. Besides, we're all friends, here, right?

I volunteer to do all the cooking. I mean that. I'm a hell of a chef, if I might say so, myself...

David Baldwin
08-18-2006, 12:14 PM
Yooper Mosquitos - the Northern Michigan Air Force!

I'll agree that it's "God's Country" all right. I grew up spending summers on Beatons Lake - near Watersmeet. It's a peaceful bit of heaven on earth.

I'm a "troll" by birth but a Yooper at heart!

David Baldwin

(Troll: creature that lives below da bridge eh?)

08-18-2006, 01:41 PM
I have a CD by "Da Yoopers." I'm just gonna go ahead on out this "limb," here, and imagine that there's a connection...

08-18-2006, 02:07 PM
I volunteer to do all the cooking. I mean that. I'm a hell of a chef, if I might say so, myself...


Do you, also, find that the women in your age group can't cook? I have met numerous men in the 25 to 35 range who are awesome cooks, myself included (be I ever so humble), but very few women, in the same age group, who can manage to cook a 1/2 way decent meal.


08-18-2006, 08:29 PM
My 23 year old lady friend would be highly offended by that observation. She has been known to watch me cook and I'm hoping she will pick something up through osmosis. Just a month or two ago she made us spam (first time I had that) 'taters and green beans. I did have to turn the stove on and slice the spam. I built my home when I was 24 and am now 30 and fatter, so someone's gotta feed me. ;D

08-19-2006, 03:01 AM
Deltogre, Yes there is a connection

David Baldwin
08-19-2006, 09:29 AM
David breaks out in song even though it's way too early in the day for this...

It's... da... second week o' deer camp, and all da guys are here. We drink, play cards, and shoot da bull, but never shoot no deer. Da only time we leave da camp is when we go for beer... Oh! Da second week o' deer camp is da greatest time o' year!

...back to your regularly scheduled reading...

If ever you get lost in Michigan's U.P. around Ishpeming, you really need to stop at Da Yoopers Tourist Trap.


08-19-2006, 10:38 AM
Awrighty, David... I almost wet myself reading that. I need to break that ol' CD out...

My wife, incidentally, is an excellent cook. I got lucky, I suppose. We generally fight over who GETS to cook dinner! Great problem to have, no doubt...

I make a traditional Southern Italian manicotti that you guys would plotz over. It's fantastic, and I have no problem saying that. I've made it more times than I can remember, and I've had no complaints, thus far...

08-20-2006, 12:56 AM
Umm... for the record, I'm a transplant. Not a stitch of plaid in my closet. No sir, I couldn't be a Yooper even if I wanted to. I'm disqualified.

1) I wasn't born a yooper. Even some people born in the U.P. don't qualify. If you're born in the big city (that's Marquette) you don't probably don't qualify as a Yooper because you've probably drank cappichino, eaten a bagel or a crossant, use deoderant and drive a car made after 1983.

2) I can't understand pidgeon English/Finnish. But I do know not to answer "gesundheit" when someone says "Heikei Lunta!"...now.

3) I have all my teeth. Little known fact; the "tooth brush" was invented in the UP. If it had been invented anywhere else it would have been called a "Teeth brush".

4) I call grouse, "Grouse", not partridge, pats or patty birds.

Although, I must confess. I do live 10 miles from the nearest paved road. I do have to shovel my roof 5 months a year. I have had to use ski's, snowshoes and a snowmobile to get to work from time to time. I've also caught myself saying things like, "I'm going up to Chicago this week", or "I just drove up to Minneapolis", or "For vacation this year we went up to Mexico". I have not idea why the local dialect refers to anywhere else as "up", but I've been saying it too.

It's not that I'm disrespecting the U.P., I'm not, it's just that the natives talk funny, eat weird shit and look at me funny because I don't. The Third Coast has a lot of great things going for it, once you get used to the very, very wierd natives that come with it.

Back to the topic at hand though, I think that we should pick a gawd awefull spot like the "Wisconsin Dells", or one of those 6 flags places and just have a meet and greet. If it turns into something yearly, then great. Trying to find a weekend that will suit everyone's schedule is neigh on impossible. It just takes someone (or a suitablly small committee) to pull the trigger and make the decision.

08-20-2006, 09:11 PM
A yearly event would be great than everyone could plan for it.
I think this is a great idea that will probably have to be cultivated for a while and then maybe have an annual Great lakes GM fest! If we got near one of the tourist trap rivers we could go out tubing. If we could get Rex Halfpenny to show up we could get some publicity for GM!

BTW kash. I haven't been to the UP in years but I stayed in ST. Ignace this year and we went to the island. As soon as we crossed the bridge it was pasties for sale on every corner. Don't get me wrong I like pasties, But in the lower you just can't go into a resturant and buy one. Either you make them yourself or else you can sometimes find them in grocery stores.

08-20-2006, 11:54 PM
Just say ya to da UP eh!!! Ya, it'll be a hoot!

I have some former business associates from da RANGE! ;D ;D ;D



08-21-2006, 07:46 AM
I think an annual Great Lakes GM event would be a blast. To start the process, we should collect a list of where the mid-West GMers live so that we can start to find a center point that is the most convenient to reach for the most members. To start with, if not done already, update your member profile with city and state. This can then be mined to help in the selection of a meeting place.


Dan McFeeley
08-21-2006, 09:35 AM
I think an annual Great Lakes GM event would be a blast. To start the process, we should collect a list of where the mid-West GMers live so that we can start to find a center point that is the most convenient to reach for the most members. To start with, if not done already, update your member profile with city and state. This can then be mined to help in the selection of a meeting place.

I'll go first. Kankakee, Illinois. Some years back we were lampooned on the David Letterman show when a survey listed us as one of the worst places in the USA to live. We made his top ten list. ;D ;D ;D

Letterman was nice about it. Afterwards he presented the city with twin gazebos, a gift to show us no hard feelings, all in the line of comedy and humor. ;D


08-21-2006, 09:36 AM
Cow-Lumbers, Blow-Hio. 43119.

08-21-2006, 12:20 PM
Marlette, Mi, 48453
Amish country

David Baldwin
08-21-2006, 03:28 PM
Grand Rapids, MI 49505

08-21-2006, 08:46 PM
Dearborn, MI 48124

08-22-2006, 12:30 AM
I hightailed it out of the midwest as soon as I could, but maybe I can offer a suggestion for locale. Never been there, but I always liked the sign for "Bong State Recreational Area". I think it's somewhere off of I-94 near Kenosha, maybe Racine. Bonus stop on the way: the Mars Cheese Castle.

08-22-2006, 08:19 AM
Richard Bong State Recreation Area
Multi-use recreation area. 4,515 acres. Features 215 campsites, 53 electric sites, winter camping, showers, a dumping station, handicap- accessible picnic area and campsites, nature center, naturalist programs, vistas, shoreline with marked beach area, canoeing, boating (electric motors only), fishing, 1.7 miles of nature trails, 14.7 miles of hiking trails, 13.2 miles of horseback trails (State Trail Pass required), 11 miles of off- road bicycle trails (State Trail Pass required), 13.2 miles of snowmobile trails, 14.7 miles of cross- country ski trails.

I drive by that sign twice a day, 5 days a week. Too far north for most as it brings in the whole Lake Michigan barrier. Mars Cheese Castle is a nice store though.


08-25-2006, 12:53 AM
Well I have my first batch of mead working so I don't think I am qualified to get in on this tasting thing since I have never tasted any mead EVER! 38 and stil a mead virgin :)

Anyway with that said for the record I am in Winchester WI which is about half way from the third coast and the Windy City. Since I wouldn't be going, my vote shouldn't count, but having been to both places and most places between them, I just have to say the UP is the palace to have it.

FTR A place called the Red Fox Inn in Gwinn (Old KI Sawyer AFB) has 4b houses for rent and they get like $175 a night for that. We use them in the winter when we go snowmobiling (snow machine for Kash). Great area and a damn good party place.

08-25-2006, 02:12 AM
I was thinking about this last night at work. Lake Michigan is a great big barrier. But there are ferries that cross the lake and with the price of gas I would assume anyone coming from WI. would just about be breaking even with less milage on their vehicle.
I am not that familiar with the south westren part of the state so I really can't make any suggestions. But with the ferry option somewhere maybe near Grand Rapids could be a great place. Plus Founder's Brewing company is there >:D

Like I said I think a campground would be a great option.
1. cheaper than hotels
2. initiate unwitting campers into the greatness of mead.
3. CAMPFIRE! A great place to tell stories.

But a hotel could offer us some kind of conference room to have a tasting.

I am getting excited about this prospect. I am thinking maybe we could plan something in June maybe? Weather is generally good. No major holidays to work around and a good long while to work out logistics. I could probably provide a place for everyone to camp, but it would be a long haul for most. So probably out of the question. Plus no running water or electricity there.

Generally I have been thinking something close to the Indiana border from the looks of people interested in this.
Maybe even just in Illinois somewhere.

DAHOLE, meadless mead virign? I see no reason at all why you shouldn't come. A little mead goes a long ways and I would imagine there will be plenty of mead to go around.

08-25-2006, 08:56 AM
Agreed, all are welcome, virgin or not. Just don't expect to be one when you leave >:D


08-25-2006, 09:20 AM
As far as long drives are concerned, my wife and I don't much care, one way or the other. We're pretty easy to please.

Also, it should be noted that "camping" OFTEN includes a decided lack of AC/DC, water, etc... If you have those things, you are not really camping, but are, instead, "staying somewhere."

I am up for just about anything. Might I suggest a bit earlier in the summer, though? Early May is typically a bit less buggy... I am a mosquito magnet, so I have to say something...

08-25-2006, 09:53 AM
Pleasant Prairie, WI 53158

I would be interested as well, pretty much anywhere mentioned already is fine with me. Sounds like a great event...


08-25-2006, 11:56 AM
My only concern with May is the weather. There is a saying here in Michigan. If you don't like the weather, wait ten minutes.
This May we had a 70 degree day that turned into 45 degrees next day. We had a 65 degree stretch of days in January.
You just can't count on the weather here. In fact most of this summer you could only count on the weather report for the day that you saw it on. Sure they try to predict what the weather will be like tommorow but it is quite a roll of the dice. I gave up looking at the extended forecast.
Memorial Day is an even bigger gamble. If you go away on Memorial Day weekend you can almost count on bad weather. If you stay home it will be nice.

08-25-2006, 12:27 PM
Same as here in Blow-Hio, Kace. It's always a gamble. That's why I don't camp without my tent fly...

Cabins are always nice... Weather's not such an issue, then...

David Baldwin
08-25-2006, 02:42 PM

You've kinda started an interesting train of thought here.

If we held it somewhere near one of the two major ferry routes, it could accomodate the East/West travelers across the lake.

For instance The SS Badger runs between Ludington, MI and Manitowok WI twice every day during the travel season.

Ludington has camping at a state park and (my preference) at Buttersville County park. Being a tourism area, there are also lots of hotels, and B&B's. If we held it in Ludington (I'm afraid that I'm about to volunteer for something... ;D) We could arrange to pick up people at the dock and transport to lodging. I have a 15 passenger van we could use for that. (oops...did I just do what I think I did...)

I took the SS Badger a couple years ago and we had a great time. www.ssbadger.com

An alternative might be Milwaukee or Muskegon where the Lake Express high speed ferry runs. www.lake-express.com

Good thoughts. The West Coast of Michigan is known for wineries too, so some winery hopping might be possible as part of this whole thing.

David Baldwin

08-26-2006, 12:23 AM
Up here in Green Bay, WI

I'd LOVE to be part of a Great Lakes GM event.

PS: David...it's ManitowoC...I know, it's a minor thing, but with the Packers, Brewers and Bucks really stinking up the place, all we have left is our spelling! :D

My vote would be a northern suburb of Chicago. It would be a LOT easier to get a buy-in from my wife if I could promise her shopping at IKEA while I sample some outstanding meads.

I'll keep watching.

08-26-2006, 02:00 AM
Muskegon is nice. If I remeber right Vicky had travelled there recently to see family. It would kick as to meet the webmistress herself and give her a great big hug for giving us gotmead.

David Baldwin
08-26-2006, 07:44 AM

Oops! My bad! Terribly sorry. I knew that, but just didn't double check my spelling before I fired that one off. :-[


08-26-2006, 05:01 PM
That's why I don't camp without my tent fly...

Word of advice... always make sure your fly's closed before you go off exploring or take a trip into town.


08-26-2006, 08:30 PM
Touche, Wrath...

Trevor, although I really dig your nombre (It's mine, too!) I don't dig your reasoning... IKEA and Northern Chicago can officially kiss my patootie. Too expensivo, both. I really think it would behoove us to find something cheap and rural. If it's rural enough, we can have some pre-mead skeet shooting!

08-27-2006, 08:16 PM
Don't know if anyone else knows about Saugatuck Michigan. It's a bit of a tourist trap, but in kind of a "cute" way. http://www.saugatuck.com/lodging/lodging_index.asp

Camp grounds

I don't know if it's centerally located or not, but here's another iron for the fire.

David Baldwin
08-27-2006, 08:51 PM
Well, if we are to go ahead and organize this as an "event", we need to come up with some workable game plan.

Is this going to be a formal/informal/combination event?

I'm definately not ready to pull off something on the scale of the International Mead Festival. Yet, we could incorporate some elements of a more formal event into a more relaxed or informal event.

Totally informal camping type events are great fun, but impossible to plan good weather for. I'm ok with a bit of rain - my equipment will handle it, but I've camped with others who are NOT prepared, and it's no fun that way.

If people are going to travel any distance, we'll want some "civilized" accomodations for weather contingencies and for those whose idea of "roughing it" is Motel 6.

Grand Rapids isn't huge for camping, but there are places to camp, and there are many motels to choose from as well.

Another thing to consider is winery/meadery tours. Cascade Winery makes a few very nice meads, and they are about 15 minutes from Grand Rapids downtown. Vona Meadery is located in Clarksville, MI - an easy drive 35 minutes or so from Grand Rapids. Robinettes Orchards has recently opened their own winery and are about 15 minutes from downtown. St. Julian winery is in PawPaw also a comfortable drive from Grand Rapids (about 70 miles).

There may even be another meadery in Grand Rapids by the time this all gets organized.

Lots to "cuss and discuss" as my mom would say... Fortunately we've got lots of time to plan.


08-27-2006, 09:10 PM
I like the idea of Grand Rapids. Holland's not too far from there, and all you Tulip fans could go have a look...

For the record, that Tulip Festival thing over there is HUGE, and all the hotels in Holland and GR are pretty much booked for that week. I know that. I don't know why, but I do...

Anyways, I like cabin ideas, too. That takes care of the weather, but still allows for fire, as well as a more relaxed atmosphere, altogether.

Cuss 'n' discuss. I like that.

08-28-2006, 05:17 AM
Between the discussions of where we should - or should not - go for this event, I'm interested in hearing what types of meads you folks would be bringing.

08-28-2006, 10:25 AM
Cinnful Cyser, Strawberry Mel, Blueberry Mel, Pumpkin Mel, Spiced Metheglin (Nutmeg, ginger, and allspice.)

That Cinnful Cyser is outright amazing. Tasted it last night. Should be fantastic by April, if any makes it that far...

08-28-2006, 01:04 PM
Well it sounds like a rather informal event to me. Especially if there is only going to be 5 or 6 of us getting together.

08-28-2006, 06:26 PM
hey all,
are wimmen allowed at this event? i sure would like to come!
i'm in chicago, from michigan, willing to travel anywhere, could camp, could stay at a motel, hotel, whatever.
just let me know.

08-28-2006, 07:49 PM
I've got some nice Dry Clover Meads, a Cyser (strong at 18% abv) brewed on Jan 1 '05 that is starting to get very nice, a Catnip Metheglin, and a combination Scotch Wee Heavy Ale/ Heather Metheglin (consequently it has the unwieldy name "Heavy Heather's Wee Scotch Braggot").


08-28-2006, 08:13 PM
Winethief: OF COURSE you can come ! What would a Great Lakes Mead Tasting extravaganza be without women ??? !!!???!!!

08-28-2006, 09:24 PM
Umm... I was planning on bringing my missus... She's half of the brew squad, 'round these parts. I don't think she'd let me bring that kick A cyser without her...

David Baldwin
08-28-2006, 10:16 PM
You betcha women are invited! My lovely wife of 11+ wonderful years will be 95% likely to be there too.

Besides that, it would be safer to go on a VP pheasant hunt than to exclude the ladies here... Our own Meadwench would track us down and kick some... ;D

As to what I'll bring... Hmm... Maybe some of my most recent batch, a blueberry/ginger mead, and maybe some of my rhodomel.


08-29-2006, 01:00 AM
I'll probably bring an Acerglyn, a Chocolate Acerglyn, a Blueberry Melomel, a Sweet Pyment, a Cherry Melomel, a Cyser and foreducational purposes... a Pineapple Melomel, just to warn anybody off of making one themselves, at least from 100% pineapple juice and honey.


08-29-2006, 09:16 AM
Well if were gonna start bringing a hard lesson learned meads I can bring a mint methglin. Suitable as motuh wash!! What was I thinking????

08-30-2006, 06:28 PM
Hey, is this only open to people in the midwest? My wife and I have been known to travel across the country for a wine/mead event. This would be much closer!


08-31-2006, 01:01 AM
Hey, is this only open to people in the midwest? My wife and I have been known to travel across the country for a wine/mead event. This would be much closer!

As far as I'm concerned, anyone willing to make the trip is welcome... if it's at a Hotel / Rented Cabins / or public campground, if someone offers up their property to host it there may be some group size considerations that that individual (or couple) may have to impose.


08-31-2006, 02:50 AM
I'm with ya there Wrathwilde. If someone wants to fly from the other side of the world for a gathering that geographicaly close folks are at they are more than welcome. Wish I could do the same.
This all boils down to a location and how many GMer's we can pack into it. If we could get the entire site there that would be great, unlikely, but great! :icon_thumright:

I think we should start nailing down a month to do this. Then start figuring out a location. I figure most touristy type areas should be able to offer all the accomedations we should need. Which should work well as long as A. its the off season or B. we have enough time to make all the reservations. So I think a month is the first place we need to decide, that gives us a better idea of a location. Plus it gives us some kind of time frame to work in. Then a day or weekend, I would imagine.

I hear what David Baldwin is saying about organizing a IMF type event. But this is how these kinds of things get started. If we would all really enjoy some sort of annual event, who knows what it could progress into. But I guess these are issues for the 3rd or 4th Great lakes mead tasting events..lol

I would be totally happy having just a one time event and meeting another real life mazer.. :toothy10:

So these kinds of things add up to me. Somewhere on the west coast of Michigan if not farther south into Illinois. I see some people are suggesting May. I favor June. I would say Memorial Day but wow what a mess that could be, half the country travelling that weekend. But I am not saying that we should rule it out. I think that once some of these questions are answered we can start to move on this idea. At least picking a time of year can help us all pick a location.

08-31-2006, 12:34 PM
My vote is for spring, '07.
April = Great.
May = Okay.
June = Mosquitos.
July = Summer.

Middle to end of April is probably the best bet for weather, although it would do well to avoid Mom's Day. Not too many holidays in there, are there? Easter would be good to avoid, too.

So, there's my two pennies worth. I really could give a hoot where it ends up being. We'll drive. We'll camp. We'll camp in our car, if we have to.

Formality, I think, should follow on down the road. These sort of things always seem to start out with a "Hey, yeah! I'll do it!" and then end up with all of two people there. Let's make it informal; that'll almost assure success! The less that there is on an itenerary (i.e. - "That which can go wrong...) the better we'll all be.

Just my opinion.

08-31-2006, 03:06 PM
So far Indian Oak Resort and Spa (http://www.indianoak.com/resort/rates.htm) comes up as damn near perfect for location, reasonable rates, and an ability to handle a group our (ever increasing) size.

http://picserver.student.utwente.nl/view_image.php/94OUWD177ASH/512 http://picserv.pixio.nl/~picserver/i.php?/5X9SPU551YT6978R/YOHX428WY8LO/GIF/1158297195/512/3x11


08-31-2006, 03:35 PM
I second Wrath's suggestion. Outside of Chicago, easy access to most of the Midwesteners, broadband (so we can get our daily GM fix ;)), and reasonable rates, and just a short drive from some northern Indiana and southern Michigan wineries (here (http://www.michiganwines.com/Tour_Maps/southwest.html)) if people want to take a tour.

Do we have a concensus?


08-31-2006, 03:38 PM
Yes this does look like a good location.

08-31-2006, 09:29 PM
I'm with Kace, Angus, and Wrath on this one ... sounds like a good location ..... :toothy10:

09-01-2006, 10:23 AM
That's as nice a place as I've seen. Looks like a good mix for all. It gets my vote.

David Baldwin
09-01-2006, 04:08 PM
Nice looking place. I'll add my vote for Spring 07.

April is out for me. I'll be in Oklahoma City for too much of that month.

09-03-2006, 11:05 AM
...go on a VP pheasant hunt...

Whoa! That caught my eye.

I have the rather unusual and almost useless ability to find $25 pheasants in just about any state or county. AND, I never travel without a couple English Pointers.

09-03-2006, 05:32 PM
Kash, I know we're not "old buddies," yet, but I should say that we really should be...

Should I bring the 850? That is NOT a useless ability!

I could bring my dog, but he's old and REAL gun shy... He pointed a blue jay once, though. He's more of a "deer hound..." Here in the ol' Buckeye State, you're allowed to bring a dog along on the Bambi hunt, provided that the dog handler is unarmed. (Leave 'em in the truck, get 'em when you're tracking.) He's proven quite useful on multiple occasions.

Needless to say, I REALLY look forward to meeting the pointers... We'll pack the 7 1/2...

That looks like a fishing-friendly resort. Have to bring some poles, too...

09-15-2006, 03:43 PM
Cherry Mel(s) and Heart of Darkness '04 and '05. Possibly a Traditional and a plum mel.


09-15-2006, 04:35 PM
Cherry Mel, Peach Mel, and of course, some JAO. :cheers:

By the way, any way we could possibly make this the Great Lakes Mead Tasting and GM Fundraiser? Perhaps raffle off some meads, equipment, autographed "Compleat Meadmaker" (Ken, if you don't mind). I could also pick up a number of 5 gallon pails of honey (varietals to be decided based on availability) for approx $1.25/lb. I could sell it for $1.75/lb (still cheaper than most sources I have heard of) and the proceeds would go to GM. Any other ideas?


09-15-2006, 08:11 PM
Depends whats ready, but certainly my Elderberry mead/port. Maybe some orange blossom mead, vanilla mead or perhaps some strawberry mead. I would probably bring a bottle or two of wine also.


09-15-2006, 09:10 PM
Oh! If you have it in June, I might be able to attend! I usually go home in the latter half of June to visit my folks in Manistee (about 3 hours north of GR).

I've got a cinnamon-peach, a raspberry zin, and should have an orange blossom and possibly a pina-colada (pineapple, orange blossom honey and coconut) by then, plus cordials of various stripes......and can bring some interesting commercial meads for a tasting party for the review board....

Vicky - hoping this happens while I'm in state......

09-16-2006, 11:08 PM
Hey all!

I've been waiting for something like this! :toothy10:
The place looks great-- (and even Ican afford it) no promises yet, but I'll keep an eye on what my schedule looks like as we get closer. After all this is still in it's formitive stages.

I dont hava a lot ready right now...my dry cherry mel, and it will be interesting to see what the dry cherry vanilla is doing by then.

I'd be arriving from Minneapolis--is there possibillity for a car pool out of the twin cities?

David Baldwin
09-18-2006, 01:33 PM
Vicky, Having missed you last year I hope we can connect this year.

I'll be booked with Mayfaire the last two weekends in May and then the Derbyshire Rennaisance Faire the last two weekends in June.

David Baldwin

09-18-2006, 01:44 PM
We'll plan on it, David. I'm planning to set aside quite a bit more budget cash over the next several months for my trip up, as I want to make the trip to Canada to visit that meadery too.

09-26-2006, 11:34 PM
Some serious planning going on. Looks to be some event. I thought I read somewhere that the door might be left open for some of us in the OH/PA/WV area. If thats the case, I will watch the thread for the date you all pick.

09-27-2006, 06:42 AM
Wrathwilde I love the shirt. That is a great version. Are you going to have them for sale there?

09-27-2006, 08:38 PM
Wrath you're awesome man! :laughing4:

I'm just hoping I can make it as June is not the best time for me personally - my son, youngest daughter, AND wife have birthdays that month! So, depending on what weekend it is will determine whether or not I make it. For whatever it's worth, the first weekend in June is probably the best for this potential attendee.

If I can't make it, maybe I'll have an opportunity to buy a "I PROBABLY WOULD HAVE Survived The First Great Lakes Mead Tasting IF I COULD HAVE MADE IT" Tee Shirt? :laughing7:

- GL63

09-28-2006, 02:18 PM
Ok, Do to some concerns I Reworked the image. How Many would be interested? If I Get enough responses... I'll see about putting them on CafePress. I decided to go grey scale instead of sepia tone as the mid range always seemed muddy when I printed it... no matter how much I tweaked the image. Grey scale printed much cleaner.

Here it is...


David Baldwin
09-28-2006, 02:54 PM
Thanks Wrath!

I'll take 3.


09-28-2006, 03:16 PM
I'd like one too.

Vicky - working on the pool hall site

09-30-2006, 05:23 PM
I've had inquiries from some members who can't attend, but would still like a Shirt... so I've created UnDated "I'd Rather be at The Great Lakes Mead Tasting" Shirts Mugs and Steins (http://www.cafepress.com/wrathwilde2) for everyone who can't attend this year, but would still like to show their support and love of Mead.



10-03-2006, 01:22 AM
Due to popular demand... I've brought back the R Rated Version.


Also... a big thanks GrantLee63 for ordering two "I Survived" T-Shirts.

I've had a few people ask if these products will be available at the Mead Tasting Event - These Shirts and products Will Not Be Available at the Event, they are printed on demand by CafePress, and can only be ordered online. Please follow the Links in my Signature to order the style you prefer.

Can't wait to see you all there,

10-07-2006, 07:10 PM
I Just got my Great Lakes Mead Tasting T-Shirt... and the Printing Quality is Excellent!!! What You see is what you get, I couldn't be more pleased. They did an incredible job, of course the quality of the Image I provided them was overkill so that probably allowed them to print at the highest quality their machines are capable. They did a wonderful job.


10-08-2006, 05:13 PM
Well I contacted the hotel, they have a total of 62 rooms and an indoor pool and whirlpool. The desk clerk I talked to didn't think the owner would have a problem with a meadmaking group getting together for a tasting, but the hotel is in the process of changing over to a Best Western (I think that was the chain he said) and the owner is out of town for the next several weeks getting trained by Best Western so I'll have to check back. At the moment the month of June is wide open.


viking thunder
10-14-2006, 04:47 PM
count me in. my strawberry mead should be good and ready by then with a year of bulk aging.

11-27-2006, 04:14 PM