What color bottle to store mead?

Answered by Rodney Landry

When it comes to choosing the right bottle to store your , it's important to consider a few factors. The color of the bottle plays a significant role in protecting your mead from light exposure, which can potentially skunk the flavors and aromas. While traditional meads can be bottled in any colored glass without the risk of skunking, if your mead contains or herbs, it's best to opt for brown bottles to avoid any potential issues.

The primary reason for using colored glass bottles, such as amber or brown, is to block out harmful UV rays from sunlight. These rays can degrade the delicate compounds in your mead, resulting in off-flavors and aromas. By choosing a darker bottle, you provide an extra layer of protection to your mead, ensuring its quality remains intact.

I personally prefer using brown bottles for my meads, especially those that have been infused with herbs or contain hops. These ingredients can be more susceptible to light damage, and the brown glass helps mitigate any potential risks. Additionally, the darker color of the bottle adds a certain aesthetic appeal, giving your mead a more traditional and rustic look.

However, if you don't have access to brown bottles, don't fret. Clear or green glass bottles can still be used for traditional meads without any major consequences. Just be mindful of storing them in a cool, dark place to minimize light exposure.

It's worth noting that the choice of bottle color becomes even more crucial if you plan on aging your mead for an extended period. Over time, the effects of light exposure can become more pronounced, leading to a degradation of flavors and overall quality. If you're planning on aging your mead for several months or even years, it's highly recommended to invest in brown bottles or use alternative methods to shield your mead from light, such as storing it in a dark cellar or using opaque containers.

To summarize, while any colored glass can be used for traditional meads without the risk of skunking, opting for brown bottles is advisable, especially if your mead contains hops or herbs. The brown glass provides an added layer of protection against light exposure, ensuring the flavors and aromas of your mead remain pristine. However, if brown bottles are not available, clear or green glass bottles can still be used, but it's important to store them in a cool, dark place to minimize any potential light damage.