When I made my first batch of honey mead with a friend, I was amazed at how simple it was to make! I had prior experience brewing my own beer, and had come to understand that brew day can be quite the ordeal. While mead takes longer to ferment than beer (months versus weeks), I am happy to say that making it is so much easier and quicker. It doesn’t require anything fancy either…as you can see in this photo my first batch was made in a sanitized gallon jug. I have an air lock and rubber stopper affixed to the top until the fermentation process is complete. This allows the air that is generated during the process to escape while keeping contaminants that could ruin your batch out.
Being the horribly impatient and curious person I am, I’ve been taking small tastes as my first batch continues to ferment. After the first month, it was strong like honey vodka. Now, over three months into the process, the mead tastes delicious! It is growing to be an optimal balance of smooth and sweet that will be the perfect drink for summers on the terrace. It will still take approximately another three months for the mead to fully round out, but it is on track and can only get better. I can’t wait! In the meantime, I decided that a one gallon jug wasn’t going to last very long (especially with me sneaking glasses) so I invested in a 6.5 gallon glass carboy and made a monster sized batch with my husband.
If one gallon of sweetness is good, then 5 gallons must be a lot better….Say hello to batch number two! This lovely batch took less than one hour to make (includes sanitizing and the time it took to carry it up two flights of stairs…ouch). Equipment upgrades for a batch this size included a glass carboy and a large tube to create an air lock…there was also the optional upgrade of a drill bit mixer that attaches to the end of our power drill for mixing. Well-worth the investment to make the process that much faster and easier.
So here is the breakdown…Sanitize EVERYTHING that is going to touch your mead, add honey, custom flavors, water, and yeast; then mix, add air lock, and wait for self-made deliciousness. The options for flavors are endless, go wild and get all mad scientist on your tasty creations! Brew your own magazine also has a great page of recipes to get you started!