August 2018

NWA Beekeepers Meeting Minutes

Date: 08-13-2018

Attendance: 50

Old News:

New News: The winner will receive a Bee T-shirt from Brad Keck.

Snacks: Thanks to for bringing the food and drink tonight.

There were 14 entries in this year’s contest.

Honey tasting Contest

Topic: Making mead

Speaker: Steve Wilks of Steve’s Brew Shop

Honey is the most important ingredient. Probably the oldest fermented drink.

Ingredients: Honey, water & yeast.

Steve puts together a 3 Gallon mead kits for sale.

Best book reference available is:

Ken Schram: The Complete Mead maker Best book on the market for making mead.

The Mead making process moves honey from a sugar to alcohol. It is best to start with a six gallon bucket for 3 gallons of mead.

Glass and plastic containers both OK for food production.

Start with 1 to 3 pounds honey per gallon of water.

Wine is not pasteurized so you have to use Campton Crush to purify it.

Pectin is good for making mead clear.

PH / Acid control is critical for successful mead.

Yeast Energizer: This is a vitamin for Yeast

Honey is hard to ferment so you need to add some vitamins for the yeast.

Nitrogen is also a vitamin for mead.

Tannin. Black berry wines often need Tannins.

Camden Crush kills yeast. A type of sulphate. Mead makers need to kill the yeast so that the bottles do not explode.

Sanitation is extremely important. A bacteria or a wild yeast can ruin a batch of mead.

Don’t use chorine bleach when making mead.

Mead is sensitive to oxygen. If it oxidizes then the mead will spoil.

Hydrometer: Allows you to know the alcohol level of your mead.

If you use the right ingredients you can produce mead in any flavor.

You want to leave your fermenter in a place where the temperature is relatively stable. Yeast wants to live between 62 degrees and 72 degrees.

Use wine yeast for mead making not bread yeast. Bread yeast gives the mead an odd flavor.

Steve has a lots of information and videos on wine, mead and beer making at

Distilling is illegal but you can produce wine, mead and beer because they are fermented products.

Steve sells the 3 gallon kits for around $140.

Annette and Earl Rowe organized the honey tasting. The results are:

ACDW 4th place

Linda Millner 3rd Place

Raymond Kelley 2nd place Jar #5

Carry Stolz 1st place Jar #1