Velay Mead

Mead, water and honey

Two is the number of ingredients contained in mead. Two is also the number of producers in Auvergne. One of them can be found here in Mézenc Loire Meygal.  But what is mead in fact ?

Generally presented as an alcoholic beverage between 10° and 16°, mead is a sweet natural aperitif to be served chilled with no accompaniment or just a slice of lemon. It is of course, to be consumed with moderation,  but still possesses  all the recognized virtues of  honey.

Its recipe can be resumed in two words, those which give it its name: water (from the Greek udôr) and honey (meli in Greek). This is what you will read on the label on the back of the bottle. No preservatives, colourings or other additives with unpronounceable names, only water and honey, just two ingredients, what could be more reassuring ?

In France, there are very few producers of mead. So we are naturally very proud of our local bee keeper and producer of mead,  Mohîni Faure, award –winner of the competition Talents Gourmands 2017. Mohini came to settle in  Fay-sur-Lignon, not by chance, but because the Lignon passes through this small village in Auvergne. This is the water, the pure natural spring water of the Lignon,  that you will find in her bottles.

And then there is that old proverb which says that we are never better served than by ourselves.

Mohini relies on that saying because she produces her own honey. It would be difficult to find a shorter traceable food supply chain !

We must add to the quality of these two only  ingredients all the talent of a wine expert to control the fermentation of the sugar in the honey to obtain the “Mead of the Velay”.

A local home-made product that you can find at her shop “Larmes des Abeilles” (Tears of Bees) at Fay-sur-Lignon. Take the time to stop off there, to try it and to visit the cellar where the mead is stocked in oak barrels. You will be able to appreciate the subtle aromas of dry and half-dry mead, cocktail aperitifs  with a mead base and many other bee hive products.

Mead, or hydromel, literally meaning water of honey, was probably the first alcoholic drink produced by man, long before beer and wine. Northern mythology has consecrated it, The English call it the nectar of gods.