History Of Mead
Mead, a fermented beverage made from honey, water, and yeast, has a long and storied history. Known as the “nectar of the gods” in ancient mythology, mead was consumed by the Vikings, the ancient Greeks, and many other cultures throughout history. Today, mead is enjoying a resurgence in popularity, as drinkers seek out new and unique beverages to explore.
One of the reasons for mead’s growing popularity is its versatility. Like wine, mead can come in a wide range of styles, from dry to sweet, still to sparkling, and even flavoured with fruits or spices. This allows for a wide range of flavour profiles, making it a great alternative for drinkers who may not enjoy beer or wine.
Another reason for mead’s popularity is its perceived health benefits. Honey has been used for centuries as a natural remedy for a variety of ailments, and some studies suggest that consuming honey may have anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and antibacterial properties. While the health benefits of mead specifically are not well-studied, the use of honey as a key ingredient may add to its perceived healthfulness.
Mead has also been embraced by the craft beverage movement, which celebrates small-scale, locally produced drinks. Many meaderies have sprung up across the United States (and increasingly Australia), offering unique and creative meads made with locally sourced honey and other ingredients.
While mead may still be a niche beverage, it has been growing in popularity in recent years. According to the American Mead Makers Association, the number of meaderies in the United States has increased from just 30 in 2003 to over 300 today. Mead can now be found at craft breweries, specialty shops, and even on some restaurant menus.
One of the challenges facing the mead industry is educating consumers about the beverage. Many people may not be familiar with mead or its many styles and flavour profiles. Additionally, because mead can be more expensive to produce than beer or wine, it may have a higher price point than other alcoholic beverages.
Despite these challenges, mead continues to gain popularity and attract new fans. As drinkers seek out new and unique beverages, mead offers a rich history, a range of flavours, and a growing community of producers and enthusiasts.