Skip to main content

Mead-a-Rita version 1.0

Yesterday I toured local meadery Brothers Drake and got to try several of their products. It got me to thinking about how I might try to put a spin on the drink.

What I decided was to try mixing the idea of a Mead and a margarita into one beverage. I'd use orange blossom honey as the base, and combine it with dark agave nectar to get a tequila like flavor, adding lime juice to introduce tartness, and sweet orange peel to simulate triple sec.  The honey would provide additional orange notes and hopefully a base sweetness.

Ingredients

1 pound Orange Blossom Honey
1 pound 3 ounces Dark Agave nectar
0.75 ounces sweet orange peel
1 ounce by weight lime juice
0.25 teaspoons yeast nutrient
1 packet champagne yeast

Brewing

Boil three quarts of water for ten minutes with the lime juice, yeast nutrient, and orange peel in it.
Remove from heat and add the agave nectar and honey.

Allow it to cool to around 80F and pitch the yeast into it.

Fermenting

I placed the mead in a gallon jar with a lid and airlock.  There was visible activity, though not a krausen, atop the mead the next day.  Airlock activity has been mostly slow, but steady.  

My plan is to give this about three weeks in the primary fermenter, then rack it off to a secondary fermenter and allow it to age for a month or longer before taste testing.

Additional Notes

On September 9, I transferred the mead off the sediment and into a clean, sanitized fermenter.  At the time, I also tasted a sample. The mead at this point tastes like a very sweet margarita.  I rehydrated some Montrachet wine yeast and added yeast nutrient and yeast energizer, then pitched this into the mead to see if it would dry out some of the sweetness. I'll test it again in a month.

10/22/2017:  The mead is still incredibly sweet to the taste. It will work fine, I think, when poured over ice - but comes across far too sugary to drink much of it straight.  If I do this recipe again, I'll want to increase the amount of lime juice and probably give the yeast repeated nutrient doses to get it to ferment out better.  I can't say I'm totally disappointed with it, but it's not what I wanted and it doesn't seem to be drying out much.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Things I've Learned Brewing with The Grainfather, Part 2

In the last post, I shared an overview of The Grainfather, recommended equipment to use with it, and an overview of the brewing process.  In this installment, I'm going to talk specifically about mashing and sparging. Having brewed over a dozen batches with it, I'm finally becoming very comfortable with the device, the mash process, and how to get what I want out of it. I don't consider myself a "master" of it yet, though. For those who have never done all-grain brewing, I want to provide a quick overview of the mash process itself. Mashing - With or Without The Grainfather The goal of mashing is to turn the starches in the grain into sugars. More specifically, you want to turn the starches into a mix of fermentable and unfermentable sugars that provide the flavor profile associated with the beer you are brewing. A sweeter beer might warrant more unfermentable sugars. A more dry beer will demand few unfermentable sugars. To a great extent, controlling the

Brewing with The Grainfather, Part 3 - Cleaning and Overall Thoughts

In Part 1 of this series, I introduced The Grainfather and discussed how to use it for mashing and sparging.  In Part 2, we talked about boiling and chilling the wort with The Grainfather and its included counterflow chiller.  In this final segment, we'll discuss cleanup and overall thoughts about the device and its usage. Cleanup Once you've pumped the wort from The Grainfather into your fermenter and pitched your yeast, you're well on your way to a delicious batch of homebrew.  Unfortunately, you've still got some cleanup work to do. The cleanup process in my experience will take 20-30 minutes.  It involves the following tasks: Removing and discarding the grain from The Grainfather's grain basket Cleaning the grain basket, kettle, recirculation tube, and wort chiller Cleaning all the other implements used in brewing (scale, scoops, mash paddle, etc.) At the end of the brewing process, there will be hops bags (if you used them), grain and other residu

Yellow Label Angel Yeast vs. Typical Brewing Yeast

I currently have my second batch of rice wine fermenting with the "magical" yellow-label Angel Yeast from China, and wanted to share some of the more unusual aspects of using it.  If you've never seen or used this yeast, I suspect you're not alone.  It ships in a 500 gram package that looks like this: What makes it "yellow label" is that yellow box you see in the upper left corner of the package.  This implies that it's yeast for distilling (though you do not need to have a still or distill the output to use it).  As I understand it, inside the package is a mix of yeast and other materials which will convert starch into sugar and directly ferment it, without the need for a traditional mash step.  This can radically shorten your brewing time.  For my most-recent batch of rice wine, I heated 3 gallons of water to 155F, poured it over 13+ pounds of uncooked rice straight out of the bag, let that soak for an hour, rehydrated some of this yeast in warm water,