North Carolina People, Places, and Things-September 8
I am the dad to five adult children. As they were growing up I attempted to remind them they were special and to implore them to learn something new. My goal was to do that daily.
In 2016 my goal is to learn something new daily on the people, places, and things that make North Carolina special. Everyday this year I am doing a post on what I have learned new.
When you drink a different beer every day for a year you get a reputation. Often times the reputation is not accurate. In church on Sunday a friend comes up to me after the services and asked me what I know about mead?
Mead Homebrew Kit.
I responded that I believe it is made of honey and I have had one sip of home made mead in my life. That social splash came from an oversized beer stein from a man dressed in a medieval costume. The stein looks about the right size in the photo below.
For fear of indicting myself I won’t go into any further details about my mead experience except to say I was in the wrong place with the wrong crowd. If I had been caught my man card would have surely been revoked.
I wasn’t prepared for something that tasted like wine being served in a stein and that was the extent of my knowledge of mead. I was further quizzed on Sunday is mead a beer or wine? My answer a guess is wine based solely on taste.
So I went researching if you can find mead in North Carolina and just what the hell is it?
First off Mead is made and sold in North Carolina.
One place you can get it is in Pittsboro, NC at Starlight Mead
Starrlight Mead in the Chatham Mills Complex
480 Hillsboro Street, Suite 1000
Pittsboro, NC 27312
What is Mead?
Mead is a fermented beverage made from honey! David Meyers, of Redstone Meadery in Colorado, says that mead is “the oldest fermented beverage no one has heard of!” Mead’s history dates back at least to the Egyptians and has been associated with Vikings, medieval castles and Renaissance Faires.
Is it beer? Or is it wine?
Most meads are much closer to wine than beer. Many people categorize mead with beer – in the past it was often consumed in mugs or drinking horns like beer or ale. Mead is also known as “honey wine”, even if it is considered a separate and distinct type of alcoholic beverage.
Mead is created using the same process and equipment as wine. Wine is usually fermented grape juice, but can also be made from other fermented fruits (known as “country wines”). Mead is fermented honey and water – sometimes with fruit or spices added. And just as wine can vary in taste, color and dryness (or sweetness), mead can also vary in style from variety to variety. There are other meaderies that are making beer style meads too – often carbonated and with lower alcohol content.
What types of Mead are available?
As mentioned above, mead like wine, can range from dry (no sugar) to sweet and have other fruits or spices added. Some common mead terms are:
- Traditional – mead made just with honey
- Cyser – mead made with apples or apple juice and honey
- Pyment – mead made with grapes or grape juice and honey
- Melomel – mead made with any fruit (other than apples or grapes) and honey
- Metheglin – mead made with honey and spices or herbs