Mead: Not just for monks!
Mead. Wonderful, wonderful fermented honey! Ranging anything from 3.5%* to up to 20% ABV, carbonated or still, ‘pure’ or with additives such as spices or hops, mead is as varied as it is refreshing.
Until we did a little delving, the assumption here at Riverside was that the monks of old had a hand in its conception. In fact, origins of the fermentation of honey date right back to 7000BC in Northern China — way before Friar Tuck was waving his gourd around!
It is certainly true that monks in Europe kept the tradition alive, as taxes forced the higher alcohol volumes out of fashion, and as a by-product of their beekeeping.
Today it’s been largely supplanted by beer, wine and spirits, but if you’ve never experienced it, with the warm weather on it’s way, we would absolutely recommend giving it a try. There are some great varieties out there — we produce our own ‘pure’ Beeding Mead which, at 3.5%, is perfect accompaniment to a long summer afternoon!
(* having said that, we even make a 1.5% ABV ‘drivers’ edition of Beeding Mead!)
So, try something new this weekend! Let us know what you found and what you think.