Mead (Miodh in Irish) is the world’s oldest alcoholic drink, referred to as nectar of the gods, ambrosia, honey wine or honeymoon wine. Chemical signatures consistent with the presence of honey and fermentation have been discovered in northern China in 7000 BC. In Europe, mead residual traces were found in ceramics from 2800-1800 BC, the archaeological culture known as the Beaker culture for its distinctive pottery drinking beakers.
Another stunning discovery of mead was made in the so-called Celtic chieftain’s wagon grave at Hochdorf near Stuttgart, Germany and dated back to 600BC.
Honey bees and beekeeping are said to have been bought to Ireland from Wales in the 5th century AD by a saint named Modomnóc, who is also believed to be identify with St Molaige (founder of the original settlement in Timoleague (Tigh Molaige, not far from Kinsale).