Annual Mead Contest
Mead, sometimes referred to as "honey-wine" is a traditional alcoholic beverage made from fermenting a combination of honey, water, and various other ingredients. It can be dry or sweet, fruity or spicy. Many of the members of various Alliance kindreds have tried their hand and brewing this delicious (and occasionally fickle) delight. Some have become masters of the art. However, even masters have off batches - and a newcomer may have a run of incredible good fortune.
Types of Mead
Although it is common to think of mead as a 'one trick pony' of beverages - there are many different varieties of mead:
- "Plain" or traditional mead - made with honey, water, and yeast
- a 'sack mead' is sweeter, due to more honey than can be transmuted into alcohol by the yeast
- Melomel - made with fruit juices, as well as honey
- Cyser - technically a melomel, this mead is made with apples/cider
- Methylglen - a traditional spiced mead, very common to the Yule season. A traditional methylglen takes at least a year to make
- Braggot - mead made with both honey and malted grain, technically a mead-beer
- Rhyzomel - mead made with root vegetables such as potatoes (so, a mead-vodka)
- Pyment - mead made with both honey and grapes, truely a honey-wine
- Rhodomel - mead flavored with roses
- ... and many others
The Asatru Alliance's mead contest is judged blindly - so there is no judging of the bottling or labeling of the product, as you would see in many other competitions. The entries are judged on a scale of 1-10 on the following points:
- Percieved alcohol content
- Overall drinkability
To participate as a judge, the individual must have an entry in the competition. Most judges actually do not recognize their own entries, due to the blind judging system used. Individuals who do not wish to judge, or cannot for some reason judge, may present a proxy to sit in their place.
The 'Mead Hogs"
As an adjunct to our 'official' mead judges, there is a traditional group of rowdy mead afficionados known as the "Mead Hogs". These individuals definately keep things lively and entertaining durring what might otherwise be a pretty dry competition. They are lovers of mead, and make their opinions clearly known!
AlThing 33 Mead Brewer's Competition Winners:
Judge's Selection - winner of the coveted Silver Bee: Nathan
Mead Hog's Favorite - winner of the Hog - David Shadwick