Mead can be said as the oldest alcoholic beverage on earth. Pottery vessels from china dated 7000 B.C. suggests evidence of mead fermentation. Fruits are not used in the making of mead. Rather than fruits, honey, water, and yeast are used in making it.
Mead can also be said as honey wine. Due to its unique fermentation process and no fruity ingredients, it has its name in the world of alcoholic beverages. Even if it’s made of different spices and fruits are mixed, it is not considered fruit wine.
How to store mead?
The alcohol volume in mead differs from brand to brand. Mead needs to treat it as wine when it comes to storing. You do not want to turn your precious mead bad and want to enjoy every bit of it. If you want to store the mead for a longer period, you need to take care of the following things.
Keep it away from sunlight.
You must keep it away from the sunlight. You must store the mead in a cool and dry place. An opened bottle of mead must be sealed properly. Avoid putting your mead in a warm area that will quickly make it rancid due to yeast’s presence in it.
The volume of alcohol in a harder mead is about 18 to 20%, and in some brands, it is also available in 8 to 10% alcohol volume.
Place in a cool and dry place
Like the wine, you can also place mead in a cool and dry place, obviously away from the sunlight. The best place to store the mead is the pantry or a cupboard in the kitchen.
Keep it in the pantry
Classic mead has a high content of alcohol. Therefore, you don’t need to refrigerate it after opening. It can be kept in the wine cellar, or the pantry will also be the best place. If it is exposed to sunlight, the taste will be messed up, and the quality would not be retained.
Keep it sealed tightly.
Once you have opened the bottle, keep in mind that you should keep the bottle sealed tightly. If the bottle is sealed with a cork, then it is good for long term storage. The cork stays moist and will prevent it from going bad very quickly.
Store in the fridge
If you want to use the mead for a long period, you can put it in the fridge. But if you can use it within a week, it is recommended not to put it in the fridge. Meads with low content of alcohol can be stored in the fridge.
Can You Freeze Mead?
Like alcohols, you can store mead in the freezer for long term use. But it may not retain its best quality in the freezer. Due to the presence of alcohol, it will also take more time to freeze.
It is recommended not to freeze the mead because its natural flavor and taste will disappear by freezing. So, if you want to enjoy the natural flavor of mead, try not to freeze it.
How Long Does Mead Last?
There are two types of meads. One is classic, and the other one is lighter. As they contain different amounts of alcohol, so they are a bit shelf-stable. However, the shelf life of the classic and the lighter mead are different from each other.
Classic mead has a high content of alcohol, which makes it more stable. An unopened bottle of classic mead can last for many years. On the other hand, the opened bottle can last up to six months if kept in the pantry. And if it is stored in the fridge, it will last up to eight months.
For lighter mead, you need to take care of the sell-by date labeled on it. It will retain its best quality till that date. An unopened bottle of lighter mead can last for six months, best before the sell by the date mentioned on it. But once you have opened the bottle, try to use it better to use it within a week.
How to Tell If Mead Is Bad?
Classic and lighter mead does not go bad very easily. It gets worse if the batch is infected. There are many signs of mead spoilage that help us tell whether it has gone bad or not. If you are confused in telling whether the mead has gone bad or not, you need to take care of the following things.
- Discoloration is one of the most common signs of spoilage. If you notice any discoloration in the mead, then you should get rid of it at once.
- If it tastes a bit bitter, then you should avoid using it. Spoiled mead has a bitter taste.
- If you notice any cloudiness in the mead, you should get rid of it immediately. It is also a common sign of spoilage.
- Finally, give it a good sniff. If it smells bad and rotten, then try not to use it as well.