Friary Traditional Mead
This is the pure honey, “traditional” mead offering from Friary Liqueurs. It is 14% ABV and advertises on the label that it is best served chilled or slightly warm, so I guess room temperature is unacceptable.
This is very light in colour compared to most meads. In fact, the colour is getting towards the that of Lindisfarne, but not quite as pale since Lindisfarne is a grape-based Pyment whereas this Friary mead is actually a mead (fermented from honey).
The viscosity is lower than a lot of other meads too, which either suggest lower alcohol or a lot of the sugar has been fermented away. Given the 14% alcohol, my money is on the latter.
The honey aroma is gentle on this one. Not quite strong enough to stop the alcohol coming through with it, which is a good or bad thing depending on your outlook on life or how far through the week we are.
The taste is actually more complex and longer than I assumed from the gentleness of the aroma. There is a gentle sweetness, yes, but not overly (or sickly!) so. There is a rising heat and sharpness as the alcohol hits, which mellows out to slight dryness.
Overall, I think I would describe this as a medium sweet mead rather than just “sweet”, but the bottle does not advertise it as such. It’s not a truly Dry Meads such as Dragonsbreath Baldur by any means, but the sweetness isn’t as heavy as, say, Lyme Bay Traditional Mead mead.