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Old 04-25-2006, 03:24 AM   #1
Cap'n Jewbeard
 
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So I guess, after reading the "Is it a wine/beer" thread, I can't call my vitykas/krupnikas (not sure what the real name is) concoction "mead."

But here it is, because it's honey based, and it's god-almighty delicious:

Ingredients
2 Tbsp orange peel
1 Tbsp lemon peel
3 sticks cinnamon (break lightly)
4-5 pods of cardamon, lightly crushed
1 nutmeg, lightly crushed
3-5 cloves (leave whole)
1 tsp. fennel seed, crushed
3-4 allspice, lightly crushed
1 tsp black pepper, lightly crushed
1 tsp white pepper, lightly crushed
or 2 tsp grains of paradise, lightly crushed
3-4 thin slices white ginger
3-4 thin slices red ginger (if available)
1 Tbsp or 3 sticks of vanilla
a pinch of saffron (for color)
3 lbs. honey
2 quarts of water if using Everclear or 1 quart if using Vodka
750 ml Everclear or Vodka
Put water in large pot. Simmer dry spices until fragrant. Add moist spices. When blended, add honey, simmer but do not boil. When honey is dissolved, remove spices (strainer). Remove from any flame source and add alcohol. Let cool and bottle in sterilized containers. Makes 2-3 quarts. Some people drink this right away, but it is highly recommended that you let it age in the bottle in a dark, cool place, for at least 6 months. The longer this ages, the better it gets. (Two year old Krupnikas is as smooth as the best brandies.)

I got the recipe from a "Lord Riekin" in the Society for Creative Anachronism. I've made up a few gallons- most have gone back into the liter-sized Smirnoff bottles to age a year or two, but I've been sipping out of the gallon-jug that's supposed to age for six months (it's 3 months old now).

Having tasted it, here is how I describe the experience:

(Sniiiiff) Mmmm, smells warm and inviting. It's like Home, in a glass.
(Sip) Yum, sweet, tasty... maybe a bit strong?
(Siiiiiiipp) Oooh, very nice. Hey, is that... pumpkin pie? By zeus, it's pumpkin pie in a glass!
(Three hours later). Huh... so I'm on the floor now... man, that was some good pie.

 
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Old 04-25-2006, 06:35 PM   #2
BrewStef
 
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Oh man, that sounds SOOOO good! I think I will whip some up now for christmas gifts!

What is the total yield of each batch?

 
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Old 04-26-2006, 04:23 AM   #3
Cap'n Jewbeard
 
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Aloha Brewstef:

My memory's a bit addled right now (most of a bottle of my first-ever home made wine is swimming through me), but I think I wound up with either a touch over or a touch under a gallon. I believe I filled up a gallon glass jug, and had some left over in a plastic gallon water jug, which I drank soon thereafter.

I've recently taken an order from friends to work up 3 or 4 more gallons, so I'll let you know more precisely then.

My only question, of course: why wait til Christmas?

Do 2 gallons now: drink one in the lead-up to Christmas, and save the other one for blasting your friends with. I've found that even at a month old, it's drinkable. Very sweet, and I'd maybe advise an ice cube or two per glass, but why deprive yourself? Drink up!

-Evan

 
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Old 04-26-2006, 04:24 AM   #4
Cheesefood
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I'm making this. Sooner or later, I'm making it.

I might make two, one before X-mas (as a tester) and one for X-Mas with the inlaws.
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Old 04-26-2006, 04:29 AM   #5
Cap'n Jewbeard
 
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Now, you want a real kick? Use a basic whatever honey, like, 2 of the 3 lbs, but the other lb use something more "exotic" - buckwheat honey gives it an amazing dark color and makes it smell great, wildflower should be fun, orange blossom makes it very appealing. Experiment, is what I say.

 
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Old 04-26-2006, 08:57 PM   #6
BrewStef
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by P funky
Aloha Brewstef:

My memory's a bit addled right now (most of a bottle of my first-ever home made wine is swimming through me), but I think I wound up with either a touch over or a touch under a gallon. I believe I filled up a gallon glass jug, and had some left over in a plastic gallon water jug, which I drank soon thereafter.

I've recently taken an order from friends to work up 3 or 4 more gallons, so I'll let you know more precisely then.

My only question, of course: why wait til Christmas?

Do 2 gallons now: drink one in the lead-up to Christmas, and save the other one for blasting your friends with. I've found that even at a month old, it's drinkable. Very sweet, and I'd maybe advise an ice cube or two per glass, but why deprive yourself? Drink up!

-Evan
Good Point, I think I will do a double batch. Thanks for the recipe.
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Old 04-26-2006, 09:27 PM   #7
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My pleasure is to serve! Enjoy.

 
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Old 04-26-2006, 09:34 PM   #8
Lou
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hmm...i've been wondering what to do with that bottle of everclear... and i bet SWMBO has most, if not all, of those other ingredients around somewhere.

 
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