Note: While this isn't a mead, and doesn't use any honey, I figured I'd put it in anyhow. Traditionally, it probably did use honey, but this is the modern recipe.
Source: Gary Shea
Mead Lover's Digest #241, 7 December, 1993 Ingredients (1 gallon):
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 cup brown sugar
- Water to make a gallon
- Two lemons
- Combine sugars, add water to make 1 gallon, and boil.
- Squeeze two lemons into the mix and throw them in, quartered.
- When it's cooled enough add 1/8 tsp of yeast (I used bread yeast).
- Allow to ferment for a day or two at ~65-70 F.
- Bottle, adding a few raisins and a tsp of sugar to each bottle.
- Allow to sit at ~65-70 F until the raisins are sitting at the top (< 1 day).
- Refrigerate or place in quite cool place.
Drink in a couple weeks. So far I have only done one batch and I drank it over the course of two weeks. It keeps getting better and better. Plastic Calistoga bottles are what I've been using, they work great and seem to have no flavor.
This is a Finnish drink called `sima' or maybe `simha', made only for May Day celebrations. The recipes for it that I've seen (and made) are all pretty much like this.
I made a batch of this, and it was pretty tasty while young. If you let it sit too long, though, you'll be back to the vomit-smell problem mentioned in the Grapefruit Melomel recipe. Since I'd bottled in grolsch bottles, when that smell hit me, I just slammed the bottle back shut, and put it in the back of the fridge, hoping my roommate would drink it. Found it about six-months later, and the offensive smell had gone, and it was tasty, but bone-dry. The ideal way to drink this is very young, while it's still fermenting, but if you do like I did and forget a bottle, let it age plenty, and it'll be drinkable.