Just Peachy

 

My wife, God love her, is not a fan of beer.  Wine, cider, and mead are really more her speed.  On a recent trip to California she tasted and really liked a peach mead.  I cannot remember who made it or what the name of it was, but that is not the point.  The point is she REALLY liked it.  So being the good husband I am, I set about to use my brewing abilities to make her a peach mead.

peach meadShortly after returning from vacation our pastor announced on Facebook that he had honey for sale.  Perfect!  You just cannot beat local, fresh ingredients.  I made a few mental calculations and bought 3 lbs of a very nice, light honey.  I had originally planned to get some locally grown peaches for this project.  When I decided to make it, I still hadn’t bought any.  So I made a quick dash to the grocery store and bought a couple pounds of frozen peaches which I thawed in the microwave per the directions on the bag.  I also opted to use some jugs of spring water instead of my tap water.

After spending a few weeks reviewing how to make mead and talking to some home brewers I know that have turned out some decent mead, I felt ready to proceed.  There’s a surprising amount of conflicting information out there on mead and I didn’t want to dive in until I was comfortable with what to do and why.  Fortunately a lot of the concepts are very similar to making beer so if you’ve made a few batches of beer, you’ll feel right at home making mead.

I opted not to heat my honey other than to put it in a sink of warm tap water so it would flow better.  After a quick cleaning and sanitizing of the Mr. Beer LBK I poured a gallon of spring water into it and then poured in the honey.  I poured some spring water in the empty bottles and shook them up real good to get as much of the honey goodness out as possible.  I gave the must (think wort if you’re used to making beer) a good stir with a whisk before adding the second gallon of spring water.

Once the honey and water were well mixed I took a gravity reading with the refractometer which was 1.048.  Right about where I wanted it to be.  I put a nylon paint strainer bag into the LBK and dumped the peaches into it.  I secured the top of the bag with a sanitized zip tie and then pitched a packet of Lalvin 71B that I had rehydrated with a 1/2 tsp of yeast nutrient.

That’s it.  Easy peasy.  Much less of a mess to clean up and took me about an hour from start to finish as opposed to a 4-5 hour brew day with beer.  I’ll definitely have to do some more reading on mead as I’m sure they will become a more permanent part of my brewing rotation.

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