Sweet thoughts

About this becoming an Apiarist thing. Now I’ve been researching a bit about what you can do with honey and beeswax from the hives and found there’s a whole unsuspected world out there. All sorts of honey based stuff from simply bottling the raw honeycombs to honey bread. Not to mention Royal Jelly, which can fetch around ten euros plus per shot. And of course Mead.

My preference is for something akin to a Dryish Sherry , White Port or Madiera, only lighter. About 14-18% ABV. For special occasions, maybe a little ‘sparkle’ or carbonation might be required.

Mead has the reputation of being very heavy and sweet, but I’ve come across some very pale and light products, which are very drinkable, so that’s the direction I’m interested in. But in a distilled end product. Which I’m told is very nice.

The thing is; Is there a proper generic name for distilled Mead? I’ve heard the Slavic word ‘Midus’ bandied around because distilled Mead can’t be Honey Brandy, mainly because mead isn’t really a wine, not being a grape based beverage, and officially Brandy can only be distilled from wine, like Whiskey can only be distilled from a grain (Malted barley) type mix and Vodka is mostly grain, although potatoes have been cited as a base, and of course there’s the Italian Grappa. But I think Mead, being a honey base, should have it’s own classification because it’s neither grain nor grape. So what is the right name for distilled Mead?

Now I’ve been haunting the forums, looking for information, and apart from a lot of useful information about Mead brewing and Distilling, haven’t quite found the terminology that I’m looking for.

As an afterthought, I see the Afghans want to revert to their pre-1900 lifestyle having caved in to the Taliban. Why we bothered with the place in the first instance I have no idea. Having a military presence there only seemed to make things worse and provide the locals with target practice. Which begs the question; can you lockdown the borders of an entire country?

4 thoughts on “Sweet thoughts”

  1. Get yourself booked on an introductory bee keeping course from a local bee keeping assosiation. It’s cost £40 over two days. Like you we had ideas about keeping them. The course taught us it’s a big initial investment in equipment and training.

    There’s a huge amount of work involved in keeping them especially in the swarming season, you can’t just leave them be otherwise you will lose most of your bees.

    Pests are a big issue such as the bee mite as well and have to be managed constantly.

    If you’re prepared to put the work in ongoing again and again the rewards can be good. But I think we learned from the course that they will literally take over your life in terms of commitment.

    Made us rethink maybe not just yet but defo on the bucket list.

    Oh… And it’s not may get stung it’s you WILL get stung.

    Fascinating almost hypnotic creatures to watch though.



    1. Already on a beekeeping course, albeit online. As for stings, as a country boy I’ve had the set. Horseflies are the worst, those really hurt, and a bee sting isn’t as bad as a wasp.

      Bee and wasp stings, like jellyfish, are alkaloid, so lemon juice or vinegar kill the worst of any pain.


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