OK folks, time to shake it up a bit!

I have a gallon of pecan honey newly acquired and it's dark and sensuous stuff. I also have these honeys available:

macadamia nut
orange blossom
light wildflower
dark wildfower

The rules are simple. The pecan honey is the star of this recipe, other ingredients can be used in a supporting role, including other honeys, but remember that this is a PECAN honey recipe that needs to show off the character of the PECAN honey. Excessive spices, flavorings, other honeys and such will not be on track with featuring the pecan honey as the star of the recipe, but there is a fine line between support and prominence.

So with that I want a six gallon starting recipe that will be racked down to five gallons total. You need to consider what other honeys I have (see above) and what kinds of yeasts I can use that will help to enhance the natural characters of the honey. Ingredients should be something that I can get easily here in SoCal and at a reasonable cost. If you have special ingredients that you feel are necessary you can purchase and ship them to me for the mead if I pick your recipe.

Research your ingredients, especially the yeast. Research each of the honeys to see what kind of flavors and aromas they have.

I WILL NOT ANSWER QUESTIONS ABOUT DIFFERENT INGREDIENTS FOR THE CONTEST AND WHAT IF ANYTHING THEY WOULD ADD/DETRACT FROM THE RECIPE. Remember more is not necessarily better, and sometimes simple is the best, but, that's up to all of you mead makers out there.

That is something you need to do for yourself. Use the search tool here on the forums and in the main website to find answers. Use google and other resources. Use the honeylocator (http://www.honeylocator.com) Use the yeast manufacturer's websites as well. All the tools you need are there to craft a really kick ass recipe. If you want to team up with other GM'ers that's great too!

OK, nuff said! So what's the payoff?

I'll be making and documenting this mead in a brewblog with photos and frequent updates. No that's not the payoff, but what we'll do with the best recipe is this. I'll buy the winner a one year membership to the site, and produce this mead and babysit it in my own Meadworx. We will enter this mead jointly in the 2008 Mead Festival as joint meadmakers and see where it goes, if anywhere. The winner will be a major part of the many decision making waypoints in the life cycle of the mead, which means that we will be in close contact from beginning to bottling.

I'll be the final decisionmaker on the recipe and will reserve the right to make some adjustments with the approval of the GM'er who submits the winning recipe. I'll have Vicky and possibly another person help me decide the winning recipe, but this will be largely my call and will be as objective as I can be given the ingredients and how I make mead. I'll announce the winner via the forums under this thread. Entries will be accepted through the 31st of July, 2006. Recipes posted after that will not be eligible.

I'll establish a sticky thread for recipe submission. That thread is for recipes only and should not be used for debates, discussions, cheering etc. I'll clean out any posts that are not recipes. Use this thread for questions, ideas, debates and such.

With that I'll leave you to it.