Mead fans get their cages rattled harder than a great white on gas station boaner pills. They are the original honey NFTs where each bee crypto is just a guy who boils mead at home with the promise of being the next big thing. By the time most of these people have gone commercial, the hive has shifted, swarming some new stickybox. Mead fans lost their minds when they paid $125 to be in the Zymarium club and then had to pay $450 for the bottles. How quickly the drones abandon the queen.
Zymarium is the newest and spiciest home operation noting on bottles THIS IS NOT FOR SALE. Even on their FB posts NOT FOR SALE. Slick marketing, cologne bottles dipped in apothecary wax, it’s like Boneflower and Pips had a cousin who is heavy into pagan mysticism and Type O Negative. The NOT FOR SALE is the palm to the clavicle that spurns more desire. The Heisman creates the longing.
But sometimes, the hype is valid and your combs are left fully saturated. This mead won first place at the 2020 Mazers cup and usually if you ask one of the homebrew ballers to show credentials they mutter something in a Chris Klien dialect about their friends enjoying it.
This is one of the most intensely concentrated meads I have had but it never loses its precision. It has a lot of the dry tannic structure you’ll find in Schramms but this Floridian excess, waterless, jammy, bell jars full of preserves. It feels like if you took a flabby Napa Syrah like SQN and then reduced it further, heightening its virtues and shortening its welcome.
The produce is managed beautifully, waves of grape fruit leather, rose and jasmine, prune. The drag is both drying but excessive, with fruit but heightening akin to ambrosia salad. The meadowfoam is almost distracting but so decadent, vanilla/trifle/strawberry shortcake steeped in Cabernet close it out and it is quite a load to press.
A few years ago it was an aberrant ask to have someone spit in your mouth, sheesh now it’s a de rigeur kink that everyone is signing up for. The mead world went from these sticky sweet wine adjacent offerings to an increasing penchant for berry leg quivering. It is enjoyable, but perhaps too intense for some.