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A Perpetual Motion Experimentopia

Flavour is an intoxicating place to put our attention. It’s where taste and aroma intermingle and the chords of our mind shift from war drums through to fine art appreciation.

That’s kind of why we’re always experimenting with the taste of our mead. We make two very basic types of mead:

  1. Strumpet (apple and cinnamon melomel) named after Richard Morgan’s third partner and ex-convict Catherine Clark
  2. Barn (cyser) named after the historic barn that stands to this day on Richard Morgan’s land at Clarence Plains

But we’re constantly experimenting with flavour and presentation ideas. We ask ourselves what mead could be outside the box, rather than as a wine industry competitor product. Mead has so much more flexibility than wine both in scope of bottle flavour and the broad range of complementary flavours.

A bottle of Jameson’s Irish Whiskey sits in the office right now because we’re plain and simply curious. Cocktails. Alco-pop. We’re looking at experimenting with additions directly into the aging mead so we can glean an idea of what certain flavours do over time. We threw too many spices in at primary and found a winner with our dark cyser. If we’re not taking enough risks then we might miss that niche opportunity that smacks our chops on the way through from here to there.

We’re also constantly looking at and rethinking our process. Experiments like our nutrient deficiency tests in a set of six demijohns over the last year. Yes, we tested the obvious. It’s because black boxes, Internet wisdom and magic are never going to cut it for our ideas of mead. We like to know, to experiment and experience the variances.

And flavour is such an incredible romance that at three in the morning, or at a traffic light, there will be this light bulb moment as synapses connect. POW. What would THAT taste like?

Innovation in the mead industry abounds. Sparkling Green Collar Mead in a can. Carbonated low alcohol meads like Zombie Killer and Funky Monkey (ABV 6%) from B. Nektar Meadery are defining new tastes. And older hybrid drinks are being revived by Dogfish Head Brewery’s collaboration with a biomolecular archaeologist; or, the growing library of flavour combinations being produced by Michael Fairbrother at Moonlight Meadery.

That’s why the perpetual motion experimentopia at Morgan’s Barn Mead. We may not be able to commercialise at this point but we can certainly explore flavour. Perhaps that journey may even lead to investors. Bon apetite.

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About the Author

Steven Clark Steven Clark - the stand up guy on this site

My name is Steven Clark and I live in the Derwent Valley in Southern Tasmania. I have an MBA (Specialisation) and a Bachelor of Computing from the University of Tasmania. I'm a mazer & a yeast farmer (making beer, fruit wine and mead as by-products of continuous improvement in my farming practices). I'm a photographer, although my film cameras are currently silent. I do not tolerate idiots. I do not tolerate bigotry. I do not tolerate excuses. Let's be clear, if you sit with my enemies you my are my enemy for life.

Blogger. Thinker. Brewer. Drinker. Life partner to the amazing and incredible Megan.

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