August 3, 2013

National Mead Day

“Mead is probably the original fermented drink. You hear of ambrosia, the nectar of the gods. That's mead, or fermented honey.” - Gary Penner

It's National Mead Day!
(Please note: this is a floating food holiday. It usually occurs on the first Saturday of August each year.)

While it may not be one of the more popular food or drink holidays, it is one of the ones that have been around the longest. National Mead Day was started in 2002 by the American Homebrewers Association. Like many gastronomically-based days, it was created to educate the public about, and promote the consumption of, the beverage (which is considered the oldest fermented drink there is).

Mead is a fermented alcoholic drink that combines honey, water, and yeast together. Similar to wine it can range from very sweet to very dry. It can be flavored with herbs, spices, fruits, or even flowers.

Locally, we have a place called Maine Mead Works that's been in production since 2007. They use locally-made honey and a proprietary strand of yeast to create flavors like elderberry, cranberry, blueberry, strawberry, lavender, apple, and options like dry, semi-sweet, and dry-hopped. They even have a list of mead-based cocktails available on their website (I would highly encourage you check it out). Today seemed like the perfect day to take a tour of their facilities... and drink a sample or two of their delicious nectar!

Happy National Mead Day!