How long does mead keep for? - Home Brew Forums
Register Now For Free!

Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Mead Forum > How long does mead keep for?

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 07-29-2012, 02:28 PM   #1
dtow2
Recipes 
 
Mar 2012
Windber, PA
Posts: 47
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts



A friend gave me a bunch of bottles that haven't been used since 1998. Most were empty but some had beer, wine, and mead in it. All homebrewed. The beer and wine were no good, but I'm not sure if the mead is any good since I never drank any before. The dates are from 1998 and they are called maple mead. They look nice and clear.
How do you know for sure if it's any good and what signs do you see,smell, and taste if it's bad.
Thanks in advance!
Dave

 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-2012, 02:45 PM   #2
delvorak
Recipes 
 
Feb 2012
Columbus, OH
Posts: 57
Liked 7 Times on 7 Posts


I think it depends on if the seal is still good. I've heard of meads that were all good after 10 years.. So if the seal on the is good, odds are the mead is good.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-2012, 03:10 PM   #3
Beer_me_plz
 
Beer_me_plz's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Jun 2012
Shreveport, Louisiana
Posts: 164
Liked 17 Times on 14 Posts


Do you know how it was kept? Was it exposed to light? Were the bottles upright or on their side? Hot or cold? If it was in a hot garage or attic it's probably no good. Also, if he did a good job keeping o2 exposure low during the making it will make a difference as well. also like the other poster said a good seal makes a huge difference.

I know mead ages well but I'm not sure for how long. Just curious what kind of wine was it? If it was red wine that went south it's probably not a good sign.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-2012, 07:49 PM   #4
Draugr
Recipes 
 
Jul 2012
Posts: 5
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


Do you know anything about what's in it?
It may sound like a silly question, but the name "Maple mead" makes me wonder. I have seen stuff labelled as mead that was made from nothing more than maple syrup.
If that is the case, I have no answer for you, as I know very little about maple syrup.

If on the other hand it is proper mead, made from honey and somehow flavoured with maple, there should be no problems. Unless human error is involved.
As a general rule, mead does not have a "best before" date. Technically, mead has a near unlimited shelf life. So much so in fact, that the largest commercial producer of mead in Denmark, clearly states that their products (which has no preservatives or additives) will never spoil. And that says a lot in a country with perhaps the strictest food safety laws in the world.

A general rule of thumb for storage, is to keep it sealed and protected from sunlight.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-2012, 08:06 PM   #5
Golddiggie
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
Golddiggie's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Dec 2010
Posts: 11,995
Liked 496 Times on 431 Posts


As long as they were stored at least semi-properly, the 'mead' should be fine. It really depends on how good a job HE did with making them.

I have a batch of maple mead/wine in process now (started early December 2011). I used grade b syrup (100% no other sugars in it), water, yeast and nutrients. Every time I vent the keg its resting in, it smells divine. I plan on bottling it up after I've moved (in <2 months). It's only 14%, which is why it will be ready fairly soon (might be already but I won't bottle for a while).
__________________
Hopping Tango Brewery

跟猴子比丟屎 ・ Gun HOE-tze bee DIO-se

On Tap: Caramel Ale, Mocha Porter II, MO SMaSH IPA
Waiting/Carbonating: 12.5% Wee Honey II, 8.9% Old Ale, English Brown Ale, Lickah ESB, Mocha Porter II
Fermenting
K1:
K2: Epic mead
K3: TripSix
On Deck: Caramel Ale
Aging:mead
Mead [bottled]:Oaked Wildflower Traditional, Mocha Madness, Blackberry Melomel, maple wine

 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-2012, 09:27 PM   #6
roadymi
Recipes 
 
Dec 2009
Middle of the Mitten, Michigan
Posts: 807
Liked 33 Times on 31 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by dtow2 View Post
How do you know for sure if it's any good and what signs do you see,smell, and taste if it's bad.
Thanks in advance!
Dave
If it doesn't smell offensive it will be fine to taste, if it tastes ok, it will be fine to drink. If it has survived 14 years of uhknown storage conditions, it should be fantastic.
__________________
Reality is an illusion that occurs due to the lack of alcohol.
Give a man a beer, he'll drink for the day.Teach a man to brew, he'll be drunk the rest of his life.
I have 8 carboys, 8 cornies, 5-1 gal jugs, 200 wine bottles, 10 cases of beer bottles and a nice assortment of flip tops....My goal is to keep them at least 50% occupied

 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-2012, 09:46 PM   #7
amandabab
Recipes 
 
Mar 2012
spokane, wa
Posts: 1,971
Liked 242 Times on 183 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by roadymi View Post
If it doesn't smell offensive it will be fine to taste, if it tastes ok, it will be fine to drink. If it has survived 14 years of uhknown storage conditions, it should be fantastic.
I wish I had 14 year old mead.
Mine never seems to get past 4

 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-29-2012, 10:51 PM   #8
Tantalus
Recipes 
 
Feb 2012
Alexandria, Virginia
Posts: 113
Liked 6 Times on 5 Posts


I've seen threads about 21 year meads before. Honey is one of the few foods that doesn't spoil, and the high ABV of most meads should discourage bacteria or other infections. Give it a shot, if it tastes bad you can always dump it.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2012, 12:16 AM   #9
Golddiggie
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
Golddiggie's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Dec 2010
Posts: 11,995
Liked 496 Times on 431 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by amandabab View Post
I wish I had 14 year old mead.
Mine never seems to get past 4
I'm actually planning to squirrel away several bottles from what I made in 2010 to see how they are as the years go by. I'm thinking it will be a good idea to reserve several bottles of each batch made so that I can see how they change over time. I'm planning to use 375ml bottles for this, but might also set aside some 750ml bottles, just in case.

I have a 21% mead that will be 18-24 months before it goes to bottles (from when it was started). It might need even more time after that for aging. I'm also planning a 25% mead that I'll make once I've moved. Wonder how long that will take before it becomes truly great.
__________________
Hopping Tango Brewery

跟猴子比丟屎 ・ Gun HOE-tze bee DIO-se

On Tap: Caramel Ale, Mocha Porter II, MO SMaSH IPA
Waiting/Carbonating: 12.5% Wee Honey II, 8.9% Old Ale, English Brown Ale, Lickah ESB, Mocha Porter II
Fermenting
K1:
K2: Epic mead
K3: TripSix
On Deck: Caramel Ale
Aging:mead
Mead [bottled]:Oaked Wildflower Traditional, Mocha Madness, Blackberry Melomel, maple wine

 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-30-2012, 01:48 AM   #10
derek81
Recipes 
 
Feb 2012
Posts: 184
Liked 2 Times on 1 Posts


Drink it and tell us if it's good! Pics please lol

 
Reply With Quote
Reply
Thread Tools



Forum Jump