SAKE & BEER & CIDER & PERRY
In 2020, Gosnells meadery of Peckham took the unusual step of collaborating with a Sake, and it has never looked back.
“Collaborations are a KEY strategy for us in 2021” according to Tom Gosnell, London’s only meaderer. “Our honeys are such a great elixir: They provide sweetness and depth all in one – and the meads they create add complexity to cocktails and to an astonishing range of drinks!”
“Collaborations are exhilarating as both we and our partners want to coax different nuances from the final liquid: So, it’s a give and take, and that often leads to the creation of an out-of-the-normal mead.”
A partnership in autumn 2020 with Kanpai Sake of Peckham saw the partners conjuring up an unconventional Kanpai Bee Sake at 13% abv; and this was followed by a tie-in with Hawkes cider in February, blending Dabinett cider apples with Gosnells’ Hopped mead to produce a 5.5% ‘Cyser’.
Early May will see a 0% sparkling fruit ‘shrub’ with Square Root Soda of Hackney to add interest to a hot summer; and then two collaborations with the ever-questioning Cloudwater Brewery of Manchester will see Gosnells’ meads blended with pale ales in cherry beer and port barrels, perhaps with more fruits added.
Tom Gosnell comments: “We will also start more collaborations with bees, rather than just expecting them to help us. We aim to help them and other pollinators in central London through new nectar-rich plantings.
“Bees are amazing creatures, and we all need to understand their needs better, so as to ensure that they have the right food supplies all the way through the year.”
Sept 2020 KANPAI BEE SAKE 13%
Kanpai are down the road from us in Peckham and make London Craft Sake. They are constantly experimenting with their rice, their koji or their yeast. Their Sake is clean, fresh, warming and versatile. We decided that unlike most collaborations, we would create a liquid separately and then blend in the barrel to induce a second fermentation and allow it to age & meld together. We wanted to make sure that it could show its character well alongside a specialised mead using raw honey from Hackney, East London. This had a beautiful honeysuckle and stone fruit character, delicate herbaceous notes with hints of black pepper which we thought would pair perfectly with Kanpai Saké.
Lightly sparkling 750ml bottle available from gosnells.co.uk £30
Feb 2021 BREWDOG/HAWKES. ‘Cyser’ 5.5%
This has been an exciting off-the-wall collaboration with Hawkes Cider, at their home in Druid Street SE1, with cans of the Cyser showing characteristics of both the apples and the honeys. The honey was our orange blossom honey from Valencia, and the apples were the 2018 dabinet variety for their special acidity and strong tannins. Having learnt from previous collaborations that we wanted to get as much of both the honey and apple flavours together, we fermented the mead and cider separately, before blending and undergoing a short secondary fermentation.
£8.95 for a pack of 4 x 330ml cans from brewdog.com
May 2021. SQUARE ROOT SODA, 0%:
Square Root are based in Leyton, E10, and we are joining with them to create a really special mead soda. It will taste more like a shrub, with two or three fruits adding a really summery element. A Raspberry/Mango Shrub is the aim so far, but who knows with what exotic East of London fruits they may decide to challenge us and our Peckham’ian preconceptions? It will be sold in bottle
June 2021. CLOUDWATER
A blend of fresh Belgian pale and Gosnells London Mead was brewed in 2020 and has remained there ever since. Cloudwater will let it age further into the spring or early summer for stability and coherence of flavour. The delicate floral characteristics of the Mead are not at all lost when blended with the beer, and it already tastes like a naturally fermented Sauternes – if such a thing exists. As for the barrels, Cloudwater is using second use port barrels on wild lees, plus second use sour cherry beer barrels. So we have the option to blend the two, or to keep them separate – as two distinct offerings. We’ll see. To be sold in cans.
Press release from R&R Teamwork on behalf of Gosnell’s
For further info contact Rupert Ponsonby or Natasha Najm of R&R Teamwork on 020 7384 1333; 07785 733220