Our Mead

Learn What Makes Kinsale Mead

Our mead is handcrafted in West Cork in our meadery in Barrack Lane in Kinsale (close to the site of the 1601 Battle of Kinsale). Each batch is carefully mixed, fermented and matured with care and passion and attention to quality.

Honey:  Mead’s primary ingredient is honey, collected from many diverse botanical sources by nature’s most amazing workers, honey bees. It takes the bees about two million visits to flowers to make one pound of honey and those bees will cover 90,000 kilometres. Kinsale and Spain have close maritime links dating back several centuries and our honey comes from Spain along those same trade routes to Kinsale. We use Spanish orange blossom honey as our single source floral honey for our traditional style Atlantic Dry Mead.

Our water comes from Innishannon (Inis Eonáin) upriver from Kinsale along the beautiful meandering river Bandon which rises in the Shehy Mountains. We like to think our water gets infused with the salty air of the Wild Atlantic, especially after a winter storm has blown over.

Fruits: Our Wild Red Mead and our Hazy Summer Mead are Melomel style meads where fruit is added to ferment with the honey. Our blackcurrants come from Ballykelly Farm in Wexford, home of the famous Jeffares blackcurrants. We bag our solid fruit in fine mesh bags with about 400Kg of fruit in one of our 1000L fermentation tanks – that’s a lot of blackcurrants and red fingers.

Our honey and fruit is mixed with local water and yeast is added and then we sit back and let nature and time turn the honey and fruit into our delicious mead. We bring it to an alcohol level of about 12% and a low residual sugar level that retains the aromas and flavours of the honey.

Our process is a blend of many earlier mead making recipes and modern techniques and equipment. Our meads ferment in about 3-5 weeks, then we let them mature for another few months. We sample regularly their slowly changing aromas and flavours until they are ready for us to blend and bottle.

We were thrilled to win a gold award in the special choice category at the Free From Food Awards for our meads which are naturally gluten free.

Our Meads

Atlantic Dry Mead

This is a delicious traditional mead, made from raw Spanish orange blossom honey and local Innishannon water, fermented and matured to finish at 12% ABV and off dry with lovely floral, citrus aroma, a long lingering hint of honey and almost no sweetness. Serve chilled or over ice. We wonder if over time the salty air from the wild Atlantic will add its own unique flavours. Gold medal winner in 2018 International Mazer Cup.

Wild Red Mead

This is a refreshing melomel style mead is made from Spanish forest honey, Wexford blackcurrants and sweet dark cherries to create an amazingly enticing drink with beautiful colour, zesty fruity flavour, tempered with the hint of honey. Finished and matured to 12% ABV and off dry. Wild Red was inspired by Kinsale’s famous red-headed pirate Anne Bonny who was born close to the high cliffs by the Old Head of Kinsale. Gold Medal winner in Blas na hEireann Awards, 2018.

Hazy Summer Mead

A new, limited edition mead, a six berry celebration of long summer days. Spanish honey muddled with a tumble of ripe berries. Juicy strawberries and raspberries upfront then luscious blackberries, blackcurrants, cherries and blueberries with subtle honey notes and a smooth finish. Light and refreshing with a beautiful rich pink colour. Delicious slightly chilled or poured over frozen berries in a tumbler. Gold medal winner in the 2019 International Mazer Cup. 11% ABV