Months ago I decided to brew my first batch of mead. I took the steps and recipe from Hugh - I've edited the recipe to show what I did and how it worked.
- Boil then cool 2 litres of tap water and 0.5 litres of pure apricot juice
- Pitch the honey - I used 1,875 grams of set honey and I pitched at around 80 degrees c
- Stir honey until dissolved
- Cool the mix to 20 degrees
- Whilst the honey/water mix is cooling take some out and cool it down more quickly then use this smaller batch as a place to pitch your yeast - shake it to get plenty of air in then add a full sachet of wine yeast and a teaspoon of Young's yeast nutrient
- Pour the mead into a demijohn and shake
- Add the yeast mix
- Add 24 raisins and some cinnamon
- Put an airlock filled with vodka on top and move to a warm dark place
- After 2 days the airlock was bubbling at a rate of once every 6 seconds
- After 4 days add another teaspoon of yeast nutrient
- Taste after around 1 month when the mead starts to clear and the bubbles slow
- Bottle into sterilised bottles after 4 months
Doing this I did a lot of research into whether set honey could make mead as the River Cottage site clearly stated not to use set honey. I couldn't find anything so I went for it. I also elected not to boil the honey - I didn't want to kill all the good stuff off.
For the future I'd like to experiment with some of the following flavours:
- Chilli & Vanilla Pods
- Chocolate & Cherry Juice
- Orange, Star Anise & Nutmeg
Taste Test: There is no question that this worked. Like 100% worked. I personally think that it tastes nicer than the gold-standard of meads, Lindisfarne Mead! I've shared with a few people and even Ruth was seen voluntarily drinking it!! I'm calling this one a winner and I'm definitely going to rebrew.