New Segment! So in short there’s been a few times where the group has visited a brewery/winery/distillery and we’ve generally been able to get a bunch of information and above all samples of their wares. In the past this is typically been rolled into either a special or been the subject of a set of reviews for weeks. Instead we’ll now offer a little more formal of a format with a goal of posting the last Sunday of the month. This also let’s us talk about things that are not yet able to be fully reviewed and give our thoughts – case in point this initial post (of the new format) at Crave Meadery.
The Place: We didn’t get to see anything beyond the front room, but it’s a small operation that as word has spread is considering a local move to get more space. The building itself is easy to miss though (and we were looking for it), but it’s nice and clean – and the smell of honey means you don’t get the stale beer smell like you do in most breweries.
The People: (Apologies for not recalling/writing down names), but our tasting was supervised by one of the main founders and their sister (helping out for the tasting). He’s very passionate about his product, and above all making meads that are not some champagne like wine where you get no honey. As well he’s stressed in an almost routine response that is likely due to some other local meads (which are almost sickeningly sweet) that it’s more about dry meads, and usage of fruits to provide a more balanced mead. He himself was a little brash in manner of speaking, but a fantastic host.
The Product: (As shown we got quite a lot to sample – enough to make a guest of ours not be able to drive for a while)
2015 Pear Nectar: It’s very light and crisp, a good start for a tasting, but not something I would buy. 5/10
2015 Pomegranate Sour Cherry: I’m not huge on sour, but the pomegranate adds a nice balance here. This is 1 of 2 I actually bought. 6.5/10
2015 Blueberry: This does actually taste like blueberries unlike some other blueberry themed beer/wines. However I’m just not agreeing with the sweetness from the honey and the blueberry in this way. 4/10
2015 Dry Mead: While it says Dry Mead – this is coming from a man who thinks champagne style meads are useless, and there’s no point if you can’t taste the honey. I love this therefore, and I’m sad to say it’s already gone despite buying my own bottle. 7.5/10
Apple Pie: Not bad flavor-wise but there’s something off about the ratio of apple flavor, honey, and cinnamon that just makes you wish it was better. 4.5/10
Gingerbread: I am not a fan of ginger, and while it was well liked by some who did I’ll leave the score off. It is however very ginger.
Pyment (California): They switch the wine’s used in the Pyment by season, and we got the California one – which while nice I’ve been told the off-season usage of a South American wine is much better (looking forward to trying that in the future.) 6/10
(In-Progress) Lemon Thyme: I won’t score this – currently it’s a ‘fight’ between the two creators on what needs to change. Our man was of the mindset I held on there being too much thyme and not enough lemon. I can be quoted as saying that this offering would be better served in baking chicken.
Overall Score: 5.43/10 – (Remember our policy of 5 being a ‘true’ middle still applies here)
Final Thoughts: The price here is a little steep, but the tour itself with inclusion of some honey (which I will try and follow up with our friendly bear about taste) is well worth the cost. Above all though while I’ve had maybe 1 or 2 meads of the ‘Goldilocks dry’ that I could consider better – this is a fantastic meadery. If you are fan of fruits, ginger, or otherwise real strength of flavor in your meads – do check them out.