Ancient Lore Mead – Golden Age Meadery (Richmond, BC, Canada)

Ancient Lore Mead (flavoured mead), 18.0% ABV, 200ml, (Richmond, BC, Canada) (*local BC mead*)


on the back label:

“Golden Age Meadery strives to recreate the forgotten ancient recipes and revive the time – honored traditions of good cheer.

Mead made from local 100% natural local products:

Wildflower honey from Fraser Valley. Herbs from Lower Mainland. Fruits from Okanagan. Unfiltered, unpasteurized, no sulfites”

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  • Style: (flavoured – Balsam tree needles/NA fir, Tarragon, Nutmeg, Propolis, Coffee, Juniper berry, Yarrow, Grape leaf, Vanilla bean) Mead
  • Taste: Complex cacao sweet tangy honey coffee vanilla hints of floral fir
  • Where I got it : Legacy Liquor / Vancouver
  • How much: $11 CAD (after 5% off) – 200ml., January 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to mead aficionados: worth a go

Visual: Plastic cork. Pours slightly hazy apple juice yellow-orange.

Nose: cacao, coffee, vanilla, with some light-bodied mead in the background. Bright and inviting. (lvl-8)-pungency

Attack: incoming (lvl-6-sweetness)

Mid-palate: cacao, tangy-prickly honey wine, manageable alcohol heat

Finish: slight fir, mild alcohol throat warmth, coffee bean and vanilla exhale

Summary: A unique and delectable bouquet of florals, spices, berries and beans. Quite approachable and  what I appreciate about this mead is at least some of the infused ingredients are discernible in the final product. Good complexity, but lacking depth/richness in the mids and finish, making it feel thin; Conversely however, this makes it easy to sip without taxing the palate.

Bliss (Cherry honey wine) – Meadow Vista Meadery (Kelowna, BC, Canada)

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Bliss – Cherry Honey Wine, 12.2% ABV, 500ml, (Kelowna, BC, Canada) (*local BC mead*)

printed on the back of the bottle:

“Like you, we love the outdoors, good food and awesome wine. That’s why only 100% pure honey and real fruit go into making our cherry sparkler, Bliss. And now it’s easy to take on your next picnic, back country trip or join us for extreme bocci at the Farm this summer!”

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  • Style: (sparkling, cherry flavoured) Mead
  • Taste: Dense fruity bubbly cherry plum alcoholic honey wine med sour-acidic-tang
  • Where I got it : BC Liquor Stores
  • How much: $15 CAD – 500ml., June 2015
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to mead aficionados: yes, and to wine drinkers

Visual: Bailer top. Pours coral pink with clusters of fast activity.

Nose: strawberry-cherry candy, background mead (lvl-7)-pungency

Attack: crisp-fine bubbly fizzy

Mid-palate: dense sugars, (lvl-7)-sweetness, CHERRY, PLUM, light tart, medium acidic-sour tang

Finish: light alcoholic honey wine heat, alcohol zingy bitter, fruity exhale.

Summary: Drinks like a hybrid fruit-honey wine, nice touch with bubbly mouthfeel, good structured body and delicious flavours. Solid.

Olde Mead (Oak Aged Honey Wine with Elderflowers) – Middle Mountain Meadery (BC, Canada)

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Olde Mead (Oak Aged Honey Wine with Elderflowers) – Middle Mountain Meadery, 14% ABV – 750ml., (Hornby Island, BC, Canada)

*Taking a break from beer and drinking something else for the first time this year. MEAD. Oh yeah.

from the Middle Mountain Mead website:

“This sublime wine is the perfect way to enjoy the delicious subtleties of fermented honey. Lightly oaked, and finished with a hint of fresh elderflowers, this mead will entice…”

  • Style: (Elderflower, oak-aged) Flavoured Mead
  • Taste: Wet oak herbacious elderflower apple medium acidic alcoholic.
  • Where I got it : Brewery Creek Liquor Store
  • How much: $28 (after 10% off) – 750ml., March 2013
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to wine aficionados: just try it once

Visual: Synthetic cork sealed and shrink aluminum wrapped. Pours a very light clear yellow, with some bubbles settled at the base of the glass.

Nose: Chinese soy-veggie-tofu stir-fry, (i’m serious) (7/10)-pungency

Attack: flat-watery texture

Mid-palate: (4)-sweetness, (6)-sour-acidity, (7)-tanginess, (MAIN) grassy elderflower, wet oak, green apple, almost salty.

Finish: alcoholic bitterness, throat warmth, light fruity finish.

Summary: Despite the strange nose, this is actually quite drinkable. Quite different.

Mabon Spiced Mead – Meadow Vista Meadery (Kelowna, BC, Canada)

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Mabon 2008 Spiced Honey Wine – Meadow Vista Honey Wines, 12.2% ABV – 750ml., (Kelowna, BC, Canada)

on the left side of the front label:

“A warm and spicy metheglin style, Mabon balances just the right amount of coriander, cardamom, cinnamon and nutmeg with pure BC honey. Pairing well with walnut and goat cheese salad, herb encrusted lamb and your favourite leather chair beside an evening fire.”

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  • Style: (coriander/cardamom/cinnamon/nutmeg) Spiced Mead
  • Taste: Sour-fruity apple-honey spiced acidic alcoholic
  • Where I got it : Liquor Depot in Dilworth, Kelowna
  • How much: $30 – 750ml., summer of 2010
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to mead aficionados: didn’t love it & didn’t hate it

Visual: Pours white wine yellow without any bubbles.

Nose: sweet honey wine mixed with distinct cinnamon, cardamom, and nutmeg, very clean. (lvl-8)-pungency

Attack: big acidity

Mid-palate: (lvl-3)-sweetness, alcoholic bitterness, (MAIN) red apple, light honey, white grape, green cardamom/cinnamon/nutmeg

Finish: tangy-sour acidity, alcoholic throat warmth, coriander, medium tart apple-fruity off-dry finish.

Summary: Although a little “thin”-feeling on the palate, this mead is well-balanced in flavour, alcohol, and complexity. Too much acidity/sourness for me to love.

Cranberry-Red Currant Mead – Middle Mountain Meadery (Hornby Island, BC, Canada)

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  • My Rating: B-

Cranberry-Red Currant Mead – Middle Mountain Meadery, 12% ABV – 750ml., (Hornby Island, BC, Canada)

from the Middle Mountain Mead website:

“Smooth, dry and full of flavour…. It has been the summer drink of choice and is wonderful served over ice with a splash of soda.”

  • Style: (cranberry, red currant) Flavoured Mead
  • Taste: fruity dense sugar -> alcohol/tart/cranberry/apple -> red currant/tart/off-dry finish.
  • Where I got it : Brewery Creek Liquor Store
  • How much: ~$23 (after 10% off) – 750ml., sometime in 2012
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to wine aficionados: just try it once

Visual: Synthetic cork sealed and shrink aluminum wrapped. Pours pale pink-orange, clear as water, with a few countable bubbles settled at the bottom of the glass. Quite a unique colour.

Nose: acidic fruity red-berry mixed with very easily detectable alcohol. The alcohol aroma almost overpowers the flavour notes. (8/10)-pungency

Attack: incoming cranberry fruitiness, dense sugar/alcoholic bitterness

Mid-palate: (7)-tart texture, (4)-sweetness, (6)-tanginess, (MAIN) cranberry, apple (HINT) honey.

Finish: red currant-flavoured nasal exhale, off-dry tart, mildly spiced finish.

Summary: Flavours are rather light on the palate, while the textures play more of prominent role. Very fruit-forward, a good amount of residual sugar, but the alcohol is a little too detectable.

Libra Honey Wine – Meadow Vista Meadery (Kelowna, BC, Canada)

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  • My Rating: C+

Libra 2008 – Meadow Vista Meadery, 11.5% ABV – 375ml, (Kelowna, BC, Canada)

On the back label:

“Yummy. Smart and Sexy. Luscious and Seductive. This dessert wine has a lovely weight that coats the tongue with perfect balance of sweetness and acidity. The signature back palate of honey has a prelude of apricot, plum and hazelnut.”

  • Style: (Mead) Dessert Wine
  • Taste: alcoholic/watery -> red apple/apricot/honey/plum -> alcohol bitterness/warm tangy apple finish.
  • Where I got it : Hotel Eldorado (Kelowna)
  • How much: ~$22 – 375ml., Summer 2011
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to dessert wine aficionados: no

Visual: Simple and clean-looking sticker label with rounded edges. Pours clear light golden yellow.

Nose: red apple juice with apple cider vinegar. (3)-aromatic strength.

Attack: alcoholic heat, watery mouthfeel (not luscious)

Mid-palate: (7)-sweetness, (MAIN) red apple, apricot, honey, plum (HINT) lemon

Finish: alcohol bitterness, warm tangy-sweet apple finish.

Summary: Nice flavours and balance but sadly has a thin texture that doesn’t quite stick to your palate.  (Note: all numbers above are on a 10-point scale, with 1 being weak and 10 being the strongest)

Lavender Cranberry Mead – Middle Mountain Meadery (Hornby Island, BC, Canada)

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  • My Rating: C+

Lavender Cranberry Mead – Middle Mountain Meadery, 12% ABV, 375ml, (Hornby Island, BC, Canada)

from the Middle Mountain Mead website:

“This is a special mead with a lovely lavender bouquet. Herbs play a strong role in this mead, giving it truly ethereal flavours. Try sipping this wine and let the magically relaxing effects of lavender take hold. It was voted one of the top 101 things to eat and Drink in the 2009 Vancouver Magazine edition.”

  • Style: (lavender-cranberry) flavoured Mead
  • Taste Profile: sweet/sour/supple -> apple cider vinegar/tart/cranberry/lavender -> alcohol warmth/spicy heat/sweet-tart finish.
  • Where I got it : Brewery Creek
  • How much: $23 – 375ml, April 2010
  • Do I love this enough to drink it again: no
  • Would I recommend this to wine aficionados: yes, just to try.

Visual: Pours a very light orange with a hint of purple. Miniscule sedimentation in the pour.

Nose: apple cider vinegar and cranberry on the nose. (6)-aromatic strength.

Attack: incoming sweet and acidic sourness, supple mouthfeel

Mid-palate: (MAIN) apple cider vinegar, (7)-sourness, (5)-tartness, (5)-sweetness (HINT) cranberry, lavender

Finish: light-medium alcohol warmth, medium-heat spicy, sweet-tart finish.

Summary:  Quite interesting and sippable at room. It’s got a nice balance of sweet-fruit-sour-tart-spice-alcohol in there. (Note: all numbers above are on a 10-point scale, with 1 being weak and 10 being the strongest)