I make mead out of a desire to take natural ingredients and create something unique and special, and so that others can experience nature in a different way. It’s really important, having that passion, that drive, to create something and share it. It’s what keeps me going through the good and sometimes challenging times of running a business and producing a good product.
Of course, a little outside validation every now and then is nice too. And so I’ve entered the meads in a couple of notable wine/mead competitions each year. Wine and mead competitions give me the chance to have the meads evaluated by trained professionals, and see how they stack up. For the past couple of years, I’ve always received “good feedback” from that process, which means that I got the judge’s notes from the tasting and their feedback on what they think might improve the mead – but no medals. It truly is good to have the feedback, and I learn something every time…but I can’t help but feel a little twinge of disappointment each time the meads don’t take a durn medal.
So it was a great and wonderful surprise to get a thick package today from the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition. What’s this? Not just the notes from the judges in a slim envelope, but actual medals! Our Blueberry mead won Silver, and our Hibiscus Lemonthyme mead won a Bronze medal in the mead category.
I know I shouldn’t place so much meaning in these external symbols of recognition, and I promise it doesn’t make me any less humble. But it sure feels good to have these little gems, and it will help me become an even better mead maker.
Ok, now back to work!