Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Thursday, July 25, 2013
This Friday, July 26 from 4-7pm. Come on by Mainbrew.com for the official release and tasting of: Elegance. A sweet/semi sweet traditional mead I made for Kookoolan World Meadery. This Mead is very diverse and pares well with many types of food.
Here we are getting ready to crossflow filter the latest release of Traditional Mead at Kookoolan World Meadery. This type of filtration is hands down the best. It is the softest on the wine and a gas-purged completely enclosed system. They aren't cheap. This unit is seventy five thousand US dollars. Boy does it work awesome! Crystal clear product and if you have residual sugar you don't have to worry about bottles blowing up in your consumer's faces! The official release for this mead is Friday July, 26 at Mainbrew.com.
Friday, February 22, 2013
This is Joe and myself. He's starting a new Traditional Meadery (Wessels) in Western Oregon. And I am their consulting mead maker in addition to making Mead for kookoolan as well. Behind us is a new 9 barrel dual-zoned jacket (glycolized) fermenter made to my specs and allows me to precisely control the zones of temperature. Mead made properly does require some specialty equipment that differs from wineries and breweries. The Wessels are all for doing it right, which means the Meads will all be cold fermented and processed with world class honey. They will be adding several more of these soon in addition to other gear. BTW, if you plan on starting a Meadery in Washington county Oregon, you might want to reconsider, it is not easy. Yamhill County is a lot more friendly to businesses such as this type (and others). More later. Cheers!
Wednesday, January 16, 2013
Hey folks, there is a new Meadery coming to the Western Oregon Wine Country. It looks like there is becoming a legitimate Mead trail out West! This will only help the surrounding Meaderies just as all the micro-breweries have only helped each-other. I will fill you in to all the details in the coming weeks. This Meadery is getting glycol-jacketed fermenters made to my specs and they are also getting all the other professional gear. They have hired me as a consultant and I am proud to say, that I know that they will be making the best Mead in the United States, in Addition to the Kookoolan World Meadery (also in wine country). The new Meadery will only focus on Traditional pure Meads.
For the purest. The passionate mead-makers are the sentinels and guardians of pure Mead (which is sometimes called traditional mead and not always accurate). They don't care about a product that glows in the dark or smells of something other than the hive. They care only about what the hive has brought them. What the hive has brought them is what the bees who work that hive have brought from afield, namely the flowers and their nectars. Authentic mead-makers get up close and personal with the hive. Just as a professional grape winemaker will go out in the field to see how the grapes are progressing. The passionate winemaker will smell the earth and soil the vines are growing from. She or he will touch the grapes, eat them, test them, and will be taken in by the pure grandeur of it all. The passionate mead-maker will do the same. If they are not the beekeeper they will visit the apiary that their honey (and future mead) will come from, and do similar things as the passionate grape wine maker will do. The passionate mead-maker will do this not because they are told to do so, but because they are spiritually aware of their place in this specialized art. The passionate mead-maker cares not for the stuff that contradicts or covers up the flavors of the fermented honey such as fruits, herbs, and spices. The passionate mead maker knows that no such additives can improve the best products of the hive, only hinder them. The passionate mead-maker knows that most fruit "Meads" (Melomels) are just fruit wine that has honey as an added sugar source rather than cane sugar - and understands those drinks truly are not Mead at all (just as many overly herbed and spiced "meads" are not). Respected grape wine makers know the same thing about their prized grape wines - they cannot be improved by throwing foreign items at them. Anything outside the influence of a wooden barrel is too much influence over the product. If your Mead does not smell like the hive it came from, then it has failed, just as a grape wine that that does not taste like the field it came from. The passionate and pure mead-maker are the few.
Tuesday, October 30, 2012
Mead has a reputation of taking forever to ferment, age, and be ready to drink. Many Mead makers say that their Mead does not taste good for at least several years. There are many reasons for this.
1: The yeast was not handled correctly (hydrated and fed).
2: The wrong strain of yeast was chosen.
3: Not enough yeast was used or it was outdated.
4: The Mead was not given the proper amount and type of nutrients, or added at the correct times.
5: Poor quality honey was used (just like quality grapes make quality wine).
6: The Mead must was boiled or pasteurized.
7: The Mead was fermented at the wrong temperature and or inconsistent temperature.
8: The pH of the must was not addressed and the yeast became stressed and produced off flavors.
If you follow my directions you can make a Mead that is delicious in just a few short months. I brought some of my Mead to Leon Havill, of Havill's Mazer Meadery in New Zealand it was less than 5 months old. Leon is THE Mead God and has been doing it the longest. Here is what he had to say about my mead:
“It was a pleasure to taste some Authentic Mead from the USA, it was excellent almost too good to be true - we could hardly believe our taste buds. Over the years we have tasted many American offerings a lot of fruit wine with added honey labeled '' Mead '' which it is clearly not. It is great to find someone who has taken the time to produce some very, very good Authentic Mead. You appear to have the skills so get out there and sweep these would be if they could be Mead makers right off the shelf with a quality product.” – Leon Havill, Havill's Mazer Mead Company, Rangiora, New Zealand.