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Old 06-08-2010, 11:26 PM   #1
gkman705
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Default Buckwheat Advice

Hi Everyone,

I'm primarily a beer brewer, and just recently tried some amazing meads. Not knowing anything about them, I ambitiously ran to the market, and picked up a completely unreasonable amount of honey. After tasting all the honeys they had, I like strong flavors, and went for the buckwheat honey. Now I have about 14 pounds of buckwheat honey, and most of the posts I have found on this site warn against its barnyard flavor!

I was wondering if anyone had an interesting recipe for 100% buckwheat mead. Of what I read, I'm leaning towards a champagne yeast for the dryness, but I really am out of my element here. Any encouraging posts would be much appreciated.

Thanks,
Greg

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Old 06-09-2010, 02:00 AM   #2
Yan
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Buckwheat honey is fine for mead, the only concern is that it's flavour can overprower a melomel or other flavoured mead with a delicate aroma. If you ferment properly, there shouldn't be a "barnyard" kind of smell or taste.

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Old 06-09-2010, 04:12 AM   #3
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While I haven't tried brewing anything with it yet, I do cook with buckwheat honey and I can say that it is more comparable to a light molasses than a barnyard smell. It really goes well with wheat and makes whole wheat bread just incredible..
It would really overpower any fruits that you would use, I personally would use it in a 1 to 3 or 4 ratio with a clover honey. As in 1 lb Buckwheat honey to 3 lbs clover honey.. good flavor but not overpowering.
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Old 06-09-2010, 07:39 AM   #4
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There are plenty of postings out there saying either eastern or western buckwheat has the barnyard smell. But I'm seeing more and more saying it's all dependent on what buckwheat varieties the bees visit.

I recently did a buckwheat mead in a 1:3 ratio to wildflower. The strong buckwheat is there, but mellowed out very nicely.

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Old 06-09-2010, 06:54 PM   #5
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Eastern buckwheat is know for the barnyard character, and if you compare a sample of Eastern and Western buckwheat side by side, you can tell the difference. Some people like both. I think the Western has more versatility, and it can be used with some melomels - I have a cyser aging now with 100% Apple juice and nothing but buckwheat honey and it still has a lot of aging to do, but the early results look quite good. That molasses/nutty character can be really good.

It can also do great things in a braggot, and in blends with other honey. I'm not sure I'd like a dry traditional with buckwheat, and generally speaking, I agree with those who think lighter honey makes better mead, but YMMV. A semisweet buckwheat traditional might be tasty.

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