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9 Mead Cocktails To Inspire Your Summer Reading

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Craving delicious mead cocktails? Don’t miss these easy mead cocktail recipes made in collaboration with a few crafty local North Carolina meaderies.

Here in North Carolina, we love a refreshing and fruity beverage, especially in the summer. Nothing beats a sweet mead cocktail on a warm day with a good book.

In case you are newer to the mead family, mead is an alcoholic beverage created by fermenting honey with water and sometimes fruits and spices.

We love mead for my Celiac/gluten-free hubby — although occasionally, meadmakers might add in a glutenous product or two.

Mead is especially fun to mix into cocktails instead of or even with hard liquor. Below, we worked together with some of our local North Carolina meaderies to create both literary-inspired and summery mead cocktails.

Find easy-to-make mead cocktail recipes with flavored meads and many ingredients that you already have in your home bar and fridge. If you don’t have the exact same mead, don’t worry; just find a mead with a similar flavor.

Grab a good book, and flop in hammock. Let’s get started.

Don’t miss all of our Cocktail Recipes Here.

Mead Cocktails Recipes with two cocktails, bottle of Honeygirl Meadery Mead, and stack of Jane Austen books
Don’t miss these delicious mead cocktails like The Lady Jane from Honeygirl Meadery in Durham, NC. Photo by Honeygirl Meadery.

*This blog post is a collaboration with Tabletop Media Group in celebration of NC Wine Month to showcase North Carolina’s incredible meaderies. Thank you so much to the participating meaderies who created cocktails for TUL website and gifted us a bottle or two of free mead to make our own.

9 Mead Cocktails To Inspire Your Summer Reading

1. The Lady Jane

Literary Mead Cocktail by Honeygirl Meadery
Address: 105 Hood St #6, Durham, NC 27701
Website: https://www.honeygirlmeadery.com/

Honeygirl’s mead cocktail is inspired by meadmaker and author, Jane Austen. Using Honeygirl’s Gin Barrel Aged Hibiscus Mead, this recipe is their twist on Pimm’s Cup.

Lady Jane Literary Mead Cocktail with two cocktails, stack of Jane Austen books, and bottle of mead with meadery taproom in background
Toast to Jane Austen with this twist on Pimm’s Cup. Photo by Honeygirl Meadery.

Ingredients

4 oz Honeygirl Gin Barrel Aged Hibiscus Mead
1 oz Conniption American Dry Gin
Dash of Angostura orange bitters
Sparkling lemonade
Garnishes: Strawberries, orange, lemon & cucumber slices, mint

Directions

In a shaker or pitcher, combine gin and mead. Add a dash of bitters and stir. Add sliced cucumbers, oranges, and lemons. Top with half a bottle of sparkling lemonade. Let fruits infuse for 10-20 minutes.

Fill a glass with ice and pour in mixture. Top off with more sparkling lemonade. Garnish with fruits and mint.

Not Quite Thirsty? Save These Mead Cocktails For Later:

Mead Cocktails For Summer Pinterest Pin with bottle of mead and two cocktails with mint, orange, and strawberry garnish
Travel around the world via a good book and cocktail with The Uncorked Librarian. Save these North Carolina mead cocktail recipes for later.

2. Orange Blossom Margarita

Mead Margarita by Honeygirl Meadery in Durham, NC.

Ingredients

1.5 oz Silver Tequila
1.5 oz freshly squeezed lime juice
2 oz Honeygirl Orange Blossom Mead
1 lime wedge for garnish
Salt for rimming the glass

Directions

Combine tequila, lime juice, and mead into a cocktail mixing glass. Gently stir with a bar spoon. Rim glass with salt, pour in mixture, and garnish with lime.

Don’t miss all of our Literary-Inspired Cocktails.

3. Ariadne’s Glimmering Bellini

As Ariadne marries Dionysus, he throws her crown in the sky, suspending her jewels as constellations.

With an abundance of wine on the sparkling island of Naxos, Ariadne by Jennifer Saint first and foremost celebrates sisterhood. We think Ariadne deserves some bubbly topped with a crown.

Orange Bellini Mead Cocktail Recipe with Honeygirl Mead and two champagne flutes with  orange garnish
If you love Greek mythology, grab a copy of Ariadne and toast to the stars.

Ingredients

4 oz Champagne
2 oz Honeygirl Orange Blossom Mead
Sliced orange to garnish

Directions

In a champagne flute, add champagne to mead. Garnish with an orange slice.

You may also love this Peach Bellini Inspired By James & The Giant Peach.

4. Raspberry Peach Sangria

Mead Cocktail by Starrlight Mead
Address: 130 Lorax Ln, Pittsboro, NC 27312
Website: https://www.starrlightmead.com/

Raspberry Peach Sangria Mead Cocktail with raspberries and bottle of Starrlight Mead
Nothing beats a refreshing sangria. When you use a sweeter fruit mead, you shouldn’t have to add sugar to your mead cocktails. Photo by Starrlight Mead.

Ingredients

2 bottles Starrlight Mead’s Honeyed Peach
3 cups sliced peaches
3 cups raspberries
Optional – Add spiced rum or Chambord
*You may also use frozen fruit*

Directions

Combine 1 bottle mead with fruit. Place in the fridge overnight. Before serving, scoop out some of the fruit to add to glasses. Mix in the second bottle of mead for sweetness.

5. Nella’s Black Widow Martini

Are you ready for a woman apothecary who poisons men that cheat on or abuse their wives? Nella will enchant you.

In honor of The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner, enjoy our Black Widow Mead Martini…if you dare. See where to find The Lost Apothecary reviews on TUL→

Black Widow Mead Martini with red cocktail in martini glass with cherries and licorice in shape of black widow spider
Learn more about an 18th century female apothecary serial killer in London with our Black Widow Martini.

Ingredients

1.5 oz Starrlight Mead’s Honeyed Nordic Blend (licorice overtones)
1 oz Pomegranate juice
1 oz vodka
Garnishes: Red cherries & black licorice

Directions

Add licorice mead, pomegranate juice, and vodka into a cocktail mixing glass. Gently stir. Pour into a martini glass, slice twisted black licorice into spider legs, and add two cherries on a toothpick.

6. Gilded ‘Rum & Coke’

Learn more about the history of drinks and cocktails in Cecelia Tichi’s Gilded Age Cocktails recipe book. There are quite a few literary references, too.

Rum and Coke Mead Cocktail Recipe with 2 black licorice sticks and rum and coke in lowball rocks glass with ice and cherry garnish
We love this twist on a rum and coke as one of the simplest mead cocktails to make.

Ingredients

2 oz Starrlight Mead’s Honeyed Nordic Blend
7.5 oz Coke Zero
Cup of ice

Directions

In a cocktail mixing glass, add in licorice, mead, and soda. Stir gently with a bar spoon, and pour over ice in a lowball glass.

7. Lunar Legerdemain

Mead cocktail by GoodRoad CiderWorks
Address: 117 Southside Dr, Charlotte, NC 28217
Website: https://goodroadciderworks.com/

Create a mead cocktail inspired by the book, Fool Moon, from The Dresden Files series by Jim Butcher.

The protagonist, Harry Dresden, makes a Stimulant Potion with coffee as the active ingredient. Enjoy a loosely inspired Port-Coffee Martini.

Coffee Mead Cocktail with glass filled with coffee drink and floating coffee beans with person in blue shirt's arms in the background
Explore a coffee-infused and fantasy-inspired mead cocktail from GoodRoad Ciderworks. Photo by GoodRoad Ciderworks.

Ingredients

3 oz GoodRoad CiderWorks Sweet Mead
2 oz Cold brew coffee
1 oz Vanilla coconut almond creamer
Garnish: Coffee beans

Directions

Add mead, cold brew coffee, and creamer to a shaker with ice. Shake, and then strain into a glass. Garnish with coffee beans.

8. Orange Ya Glad To Be Reading Old Fashioned

It’s a librarian’s worst nightmare: “Can you help me find this book? The one with an orange cover…”

Why not pair our orange-infused old fashioned with a book with an orange cover?

A few ideas: A Burning by Megha Majumdar (political fiction set in India), The Martian by Andy Weir (science fiction set in space), Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi (historical fiction set in Ghana and America), or Where The Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens (literary fiction set in North Carolina).

Orange Old Fashioned Mead Cocktail with shot from top of glass with square ice cube and orange zest and slice garnish
It’s no secret that one of our favorite drinks at TUL is an old fashioned.

Ingredients

1 oz GoodRoad Grove De L’Orange Mead
1 oz Whiskey
.5 oz Simple syrup
1-3 drops Angostura bitters
1 Square ice cube
Garnish: Orange slice and zest

Directions

In a cocktail mixing glass, add orange mead, whiskey, simple syrup, and bitters. Lightly stir, and pour into a rocks glass over a large square ice cube. Garnish with orange slices.

9. High Place Mojito

Noemí leaves behind her life of cocktail parties to head to the Mexican countryside. She must save her cousin from the terrifyingly haunted mansion, High Place.

Find an intoxicating story in Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia where the supernatural walls become a kaleidoscope of colors just like this dizzying mead mojito.

If you love gothic thrillers and mysteries, read more about Mexican Gothic on TUL→

Mead Mojito with Good Road Mead and mojito cocktail in highball glass garnished with cherries, strawberry, and lime
This mojito might just be our favorite mead cocktail recipe.

Ingredients

2 oz GoodRoad Avogadro’s Trail Mead
2 oz Tequila
1 oz Simple syrup
2 tsp Lime juice
Cup of ice
Garnishes: Strawberries, lime and orange slices, and cherries

Directions

In a cocktail mixing glass, combine avocado-flavored mead, tequila, simple syrup, and lime juice. Stir and pour over ice. Garnish with strawberries, lime and orange slices, and cherries.

What are your favorite mead cocktail recipes?

Have you made any mead cocktails before? What are your favorite mead cocktail mixes? Let us know in the comments!

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