Ramble: This incredibly simple recipe is for a very nice, light, dry mead. I've recently made a batch, and it came out wonderfully! It is truly spectacular, I like it much better than the medium mead, which I also like a lot! It has a very refreshing taste that would make it a perfect summer drink, and the one that i made has a nutty finish and a bit of warming quality that simultaneously make it an ideal fall or winter drink, a quality I often find that adding the tannins brings out. Here goes:
about 2.2 lbs. wildflower honey
1/4 tsp. tannins
1 tsp. yeast nutrient
wine yeast (recommending red star pasteur champagne or lalvin K1-V1116, or red star côtes des blancs)
Add honey to a stockpot, bring to 1 gallon with water. Warm over low heat until all honey is dissolved. Bring to a swift boil. This will bring a foam to the top of the mixture, scoop off as much of this foam as possible. This step helps your mead to clear very nicely, but also to ensure that sediment doesn't form over time on the bottom of your bottled mead, as happens without this step. If you would rather skip the boiling step, that's an option, and no harm is done.
Allow the mixture to come down to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (about 26 degrees Celsius), but not below sixty degrees. Add in your yeast nutrient (I wouldn't recommend skipping this step if you can avoid it, because honey does not supply a lot of the nutrients that the yeast require, and as we all know, happy yeast make happy wine). Add in your tannins (for a nifty trick to get your tannins into the must better, check out the post "Tannin Tip"). Rack to primary fermenter, then add your yeast. Personally, i used pasteur champagne, which is not actually a champagne base yeast, and it was wonderful. Though it is not a champagne yeast, I like some carbonation in my mead, and this did the trick beautifully. Apply airlock and allow to ferment.
Fermentation will likely last at least ten days, but give plenty of time, especially if fermenting below 70 degrees Fahrenheit. Bottle and cork for a flat mead!
For a sparkling mead (which I prefer), add about one and a half teaspoons of sugar to each 750mL bottle before filling, then fill and cork! I would store these in a bucket or bin with a lid on top until certain that all carbonation has ceased. Though I only ever had a problem once with corks popping (when i first started making wine and added way too much sugar to some apple cider), it is better to be safe than sorry and a bucket or bin makes for easy clean up! With this amount of sugar (1.5 tsp.) I have never had a problem! Enjoy!
Related Recipes: meddyglyn, medium mead, sweet mead, apple cider, pear cider