Mead (in the UK at least) seems to generally be made as a wine, typically flat around 12% ABV.

I'm interested in making more of a beer/ale type drink... carbonated, around 5% ABV, by fermenting honey (not adding honey to a regular ale). Something you can quaff a frothy pint of, basically!

Is it simply a case of dividing the amount of honey I use by a third to a half, and priming my bottles as I would to bottle-ferment an ale? Or would this come out horrible? I saw a suggestion it might taste very 'thin' and wondered what I might add as well as pure honey... maybe some treacle/molasses for instance?

  • It sounds like you are trying to make a Braggot. Sep 15, 2015 at 7:35
  • Interesting. But is it essential or is that just another drink altogether... what happens if I try to make a very weak (5% ABV) mead? I assume it would work but what (if anything) would be bad about it?
    – Mr. Boy
    Sep 15, 2015 at 8:19
  • Oh! I misunderstood the mead/beer part. Let me give a proper answer then. Sep 15, 2015 at 8:57

1 Answer 1


I just had a look at the BJCP Mead Guidelines and they mention a Hydromel with has a starting ABV of 3.5% ABV. From a quick glance it appears that you can make most of the styles in this "light" version.

I am sure that you can make great meads with low ABVs.

Check the GotMead site/forums. I am sure there is more info there.

  • Me neither! :) I just remember hearing about low ABV meads. Never had one though. Sep 15, 2015 at 11:23
  • In the US, there are several commercial examples of hydromels, such as B. Nektar's Necromangocon (6%) and Crafted's Pollen-Nation (6%; formerly the "Pollinator"). They are typically carbonated, as carbonation adds body and drops the pH so it doesn't taste as thin. Also, including something like tea or raisins can add tannins, which will increase the body as well.
    – valverij
    Sep 15, 2015 at 13:50
  • 1
    Funny since Hidromel is how Mead is called in portuguese. Literally Hidro is water and mel is honey, so waterhoney/hydrohoney, which is nice description of what Mead is made! Feb 21, 2017 at 18:14

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