Maple mead, also called acerglyn, is made by replacing some of the honey with pure maple syrup. Here is a delicious one gallon maple mead recipe fermented with orange and spices!
Simple Mead Making Ebook
Want to learn more about making mead? I have a Simple Mead Making for Beginners eBook just for you!
It has ingredient and equipment checklists and detailed instructions for brewing and bottling your mead, so be sure to check that out if you’re new to the mead making process!
What is Acerglyn (Maple Mead)?
Traditional mead is made with honey as the sweetener, but I’ve always wondered about using maple syrup instead.
As it turns out, this is actually a thing that people do, and the technical term for “maple mead” is acerglyn (just as a mead made with fruit is called a melomel).
For it to be mead some amount of honey still needs to be used, then the rest is pure maple syrup.
Maple mead is something that I’ve been curious about making for a long time, and now I’ve finally got a one gallon batch bubbling away!
I used a very similar method to my basic mead recipe (melomel) that I make variations of quite often. Head on over to that post to get more photos and details on the basic mead making process!
How to Make Maple Mead
The first step when brewing a gallon of mead is to make sure that you have all the right equipment.
You will also need to get brewing yeast, I generally like to use champagne yeast as it always works well for me and produces a dry end product, which I like.
But, there are many different yeast options out there to choose from. If you want a sweeter end product choose a sweet wine yeast.
See all of my mead making equipment and ingredient recommendations here.
The first thing that you always want to do before any type of homebrewing is to make sure to sanitize all of your kitchen tools and equipment that will be used in the process, including the one gallon jug.
Make the Maple Mead Must
Once you’ve done that, put about ½ gallon (8 cups) of non-chlorinated water, along with the cinnamon stick and cloves, in a large pot and warm up on medium heat.
Then add the maple syrup and honey. Do not boil.
Turn off the heat once the maple syrup and honey have dissolved in the water.
Then use a funnel to transfer this mixture, including the spices, into the gallon jug. Add the raisins and orange wedges to the jug.
Fill the jug with cold non-chlorinated water, leaving about 3 inches of head space at the top of the jug.
If you have the cap to the jug, put it on and give it a few shakes to mix everything together. If you don’t have the cap, try and improvise with something else.
Pitch the Yeast & Add the Airlock
The next step is to add the yeast, but you need to make sure that the temperature of the mixture isn’t too hot first. It needs to be below 90°F, room temperature is best.
Use a thermometer to check the temperature of the must, and wait to add the yeast if it’s too hot.
Once the temperature is good, add about 1/2 package of champagne yeast to the jug. You can save the other half in the fridge for the next gallon batch of mead that you make.
Once again, put the cap on the jug if you have it, or improvise with something else, and give it a few shakes to distribute the yeast.
Fill the airlock with water to the line, then put the stopper end into the top of your jug.
Let the Maple Mead Ferment
Put the jug in a dark and quiet corner somewhere out of the way. It should start bubbling within a few hours, or overnight.
I woke up the next morning to a nice and bubbly jug, and the airlock was releasing carbon dioxide as well.
Check out a short video of the maple mead bubbles in action over on my Instagram page.
Let the maple mead ferment for about six weeks, or until there are no more bubbles. This may take more or less time, depending on the ambient temperature.
Bottling & Aging
When the acerglyn has finished fermenting you can bottle it in the same manner that I bottle my hard cider.
Once it’s bottled it will need to age for a bit before drinking so that it’s not so harsh.
Most of my mead recipes are usually quite good even when “green” (not aged very long), but the maple flavor definitely benefits from some aging.
I aged mine for about six months before trying it. It cleared up nicely and tastes amazing!
Because I used champagne yeast it is quite dry, but in a good way. Keep that in mind if you’d rather have a sweeter maple mead as you may want to choose another type of yeast.
More Mead Recipes
Ready to start brewing your next batch of mead? Here are 15 mead recipes for you to try including:
Maple Mead with Orange and Spices
- Sanitize all kitchen tools and equipment, including the one-gallon jug.
- Combine 8 cups of water with the cinnamon stick and cloves in a large pot. Heat over medium and bring to a simmer. Do not boil.
- Once the water is warm, add the maple syrup and honey, stir until dissolved, then turn off the heat.
- Pour the water into a one-gallon jug using a funnel. Add the raisins and orange. Place the cap on the jug and shake several times to mix. Set the jug aside and allow the water to cool to room temperature.
- Add the yeast to the jug once the liquid cools to room temperature, or at a minimum, below 90°F. Place the cap on the jug and shake to distribute the yeast.
- Fill the airlock with water to the line, then place the stopper end into the top of the jug.
- Place the jug in a dark corner. It will begin to bubble overnight. Ferment for approximately six weeks, or until there are no more bubbles. Then bottle using this method. After bottling, age to preference.
- Feel free to adjust the spices to your personal preference.