Let’s begin with the basics: Mead is honey wine. At its most elemental level, mead is 3-parts water to 1-part honey, fermented by yeast. Our Sunshine Daydream is a basic mead, with only these three ingredients: 100% North American Clover honey, filtered water and Reisling yeast. If you’ve never tried mead before, our flagship mead is a great place to start!
Over centuries, mead makers have been riffing on this formula, adding other types of fermentable sugars. This has created many sub-categories of mead, including those listed below.
Melomel – A mead with the addition of fruit, melomels are arguably the most popular sub-category of mead. It’s very common to see meads flavored with cherry, strawberry, blackberry, cranberry, peach or mango.
Cyser – If you thought we misspelled “cider,” you’re on the right track. Cysers are meads made with apples, and are often similar to hard apple ciders.
Pyment – A cross between a mead and a wine, pyments are made from a combination of honey and grapes.
Metheglin – It sounds a lot like “medicine,” but don’t be concerned. Over the years, many spices that were traditionally used as folk remedies found their way into meads as well. So a metheglin is a mead that includes herbs or spices like cloves, nutmeg or ginger.
Braggot –A combination of mead and beer, a braggot can be especially tricky to make. Adding fermentable grains like rye, barley or wheat to honey requires a collaboration between a mead-maker and a beer brewer to make a good one. But, when you find one, it will be different than any beer—or mead—you’ve ever had.
This is a short list of the many different types of mead. Travel, and you’ll find even more, such as Tej in Ethiopia, or Trojniak in Poland. Of course, you don’t have to leave Hampton Roads to find great meads. Find us in a store or restaurant near you!