View Full Version : Novice Brewer Wine, Mead, and Cordial Tasting

05-16-2005, 04:17 PM
Date: Sunday, August 14th
Name: Novice Brewer Wine, Mead, and Cordial Tasting
Host: House de Londres (X-05), Lady Siobahn, and Pewter
Time: 2 PM until ????

A gathering at Pennsic War...

Details: A gathering to allow novice brewers a chance to have their creations sampled by other novice brewers. Size of the party will be limited to three dozen brewers by issuing invitations which will be available by request at the de Londres camp prior to the event or via email. You are also required to bring two fifths of your mead or wine or a fifth of your cordial so that everyone may have a sample. Designed to be a learning experience, we hope to have some relatively experienced (possibly Laurels and Gotmead's Vicki) brewers present to provide comments and advice.

Brewers are welcome to bring significant others but each attendee must bring the required samples (preferably two different types per couple). Contact Pewter by email at pewtermug@yahoo.com to get your name put on the invite list. Please include mundane and society names, where you will be camping (so invites can find their way to you - delivered by squire), and what you plan to bring to have sampled (strawberry cordial, lemon mead, etc.). Please plan on having what you bring labelled, not only for flavor/type/brewer, but also for the presence of sulfites, since quite a few people have allergies to sulfites. Also please plan to bring something to sit on and something to drink from...

Contact me if interested so I can get your name added to the list...


07-15-2005, 06:25 PM
Ok, it's time to start asking seriously since Pennsic is just a couple of weeks away...

Vicki, you going to make the Novice Brewer party in my camp?

Anyone else from here planning on it?

Please email me or post here so I can get your name on the list!


07-26-2005, 05:38 PM
I'll put in another pitch for the tasting party. Sunday afternoons are usually pretty dull so come and taste some of the produce of others like yourself. Email me to let me know you'd like to attend...

I am twisting Vicki's arm to get her to be there...

I can't wait for War!

07-26-2005, 05:56 PM
You might try plying someone of her notariety with "free" admission to the Soirée.



07-26-2005, 06:00 PM
You might try plying someone of her notariety with "free" admission to the Soirée.


We allow infamous people into the camp free of charge, even Vicki... ::) ::) ::)

Vicki and I are corresponding in email. The issue, as I understand it, is not one of having something to bring, she has already offered something very nice. It is an issue of whether the party conflicts with plans her friend may already have made...

But it is a good suggestion and she is free to attend without a sample...


08-22-2005, 09:31 AM
Post tasting wrap-up...

Tasting was attended by 10 or 12 people (2 arrived later) of which 8 were novices. This included Val, Wrathwilde, and myself from the Gotmead brigade. I believe that everyone in attendance had a chance to taste some good and bad meads as well as to learn from the comments and criticisms of others.

Our guest of honor was Magnus from Long Island meadery. He brought a couple samples of his dry meads which I will review in the commercial review threads as time allows. Unfortunately, I did not get to taste any of his sweeter stuff since I missed a tasting later in the week that he hosted due to a conflict with an event hosted by another member of our household.

Val brought a three week old mead. While it wasn't ready for tasting, it gave everyone an idea of what a mead in process tastes like. Val, I apologize if I did not give you the leeway to attend without bringing something and forced you to bring something that wasn't ready.

Wrathwilde brought his maple mead, which was the hit of the tasting. It is interesting that a mistake (using maple syrup instead of honey since he was out of honey) turned out so well. Our camp confiscated his second bottle before he left the tasting. Then he went out with another bottle and received a well-deserved 89 score. Not bad for a first effort. Wrathwilde and I ran around with a group of pirates and talked brewing and sipped mead in my camp on several other occasions. I now count him as a good friend.

Hedgehog, who was not at Pennsic, brought 5 bottle of various meads to the gate for us to use at the tasting. It allowed us to compare his Ancient Orange to my Ancient Orange. His was definitely better so I am thinking that the type of orange used may make a big difference in the results since our recipes were basically the same otherwise.

Henry Balsac, a friend I had made at Brewer's Collegium last December in New York, brought several meads, one of which we labelled GNC fortified mead. He had added all sorts of vitamins. The batch smelled like vitamins, tasted like vitamins, but was overall a decent mead. Later we compared a mead of his with one of mine in a contest we had arranged at Collegium. After a close vote, Henry walked away the winner at 5 to 4.

I was able to have samples of my Christmas Metheglin and Christmas Cyser sampled. Both were generally well received.

I believe we should have another tasting next year at War and so everyone should start preparing batches now for that event.

It was great to meet all of you and I look forward to sharing more mead with you in the future...


09-01-2005, 01:53 AM
Wrathwilde brought his maple mead, which was the hit of the tasting. It is interesting that a mistake (using maple syrup instead of honey since he was out of honey) turned out so well.

Not so much a mistake... I had been planning a Honey Maple Mead as my second batch. Just that after having depleted a gallon (of 6 gallons) of my first batch due to impatience, I decided to top off with the maple syrup mixture... partially because I was out of honey, partially because I was going to make one anyway.