Sap House Meadery currently puts out 4 regularly available meads, one of which is their Vanilla Bean Mead, flavored with fair-trade, organic beans from India. It comes in at 18% ABV, but the alcohol isn’t as prominent as the percentage may suggest.
Though it has a higher ABV than most meads and wines, the alcohol blends like a natural ingredient giving this mead perfect balance with acidity and sweetness. A rich, creamy texture and a finish of cream soda make this mead extremely enjoyable.
It poured a very nice clear, warm gold with no carbonation. I had it at room temperature as is suggested by Sap House. The aroma was as fair as the color. The New Hamphire wildfower honey provides a light floral and honey aroma. Not much, if any, vanilla in the nose. The Vanilla taste however does come through in the middle, but not much. The taste is primarily honey throughout with some earthy honeycomb and pepper in the finish. It would’ve been nice to get a little more of the vanilla notes throughout as the label would suggest.
Sap House labels the mead “off-dry.” I put it right around the middle of the sweet and dry scale. It has a medium/light body with only a little bit of the alcohol coming through.
I love their branding. It really exemplifies what Sap House has set out to accomplish. Sap House Meadery is all about quality, local ingredients. Their bottle combines a nice airy illustration with a well selected font, color palette and just enough “hand sketched” elements to exhibit the hand-crafted and artisanal nature of the product. The wax dipped neck of the bottle speaks to the meadery’s devotion to a premium and quality product.
All of our meads are handcrafted in small batches – we like to keep a close eye on our prize winners. For us, it’s all about quality over quantity.
The wax also makes it easy to differentiate the various types upon a shelf. The Vanilla Bean has a red-brown wax. My one gripe about the packaging is that when removing the cork, I had a lot of wax fall into the bottle.
It paired great with some Ben & Jerry’s Peanut Brittle ice-cream. The mild sweetness and crispness of the mead worked well with the sweet creamy dessert. It seemed to bring out a little more of the vanilla and earthy flavors of the mead. I would’ve liked to heat it up slightly to have with the ice-cream, but since it comes in a small bottle, I finished it too quickly!