Did you know that Moscato is a gateway wine? It’s true. It’s what got us into drinking wine in the first place.. so without that sickly sweet Barefoot Moscato, Contrivance probably would not exist. While we can no longer drink wine that sweet very often, I do appreciate how delicious the Muscat grape is. It is my favorite grape. Do you have a favorite grape? Probably not. I’m not exactly what people would call “normal”, whatever that means.
Anyway, I decided a year before Contrivance was born that I wanted to experiment with meads made with wine grapes (called a pyment) since I was a fan of both mead and wine. Surely combining the two would result in something better than either a mead or a wine by itself! I also enjoy getting wine people to drink mead, and mead people to drink wine. I am open to whatever kind of trickery I must resort to in order to accomplish this.
So we had some Muscat grapes in the freezer from the previous grape harvest, and a bunch of orange blossom honey. I decided to combine them and the result was well-received. The Muscat grape is quite aromatic, and orange blossom makes for a nice base for something in a white wine style such as this. This one was not sweetened to the level that a Moscato at the supermarket would have. I call this the “compromise mead” because when a couple comes to do a mead tasting and one of them likes the sweet stuff and the other one likes the drier stuff, they often choose this one since it is right in the center. Hence, the compromise. I’m not here to give relationship advice, but I think maybe they should pick out 2 bottles and each get 1 bottle of the mead they really want!
I originally wanted to name this “Moscato Mead” but the government says I can’t use the name of the grape on the label (booo!).. So it was recommended to me by Jon Oppegaard to change the name to “A Musket, Oh!?” so that it sounded like Moscato when you read the label, but didn’t say it. So I put a gun in the bee’s hand on the label and submitted it thinking I was so clever. The feds rejected that one too saying “You can’t use the name of the grape!” I didn’t have the time nor energy to argue that Musket and Muscat were not the same word while in the middle of trying to build the meadery, so I just changed the name to blunderbuss so I could leave the gun on the label and be done with it. A few people have pointed out that the gun on the label is in fact NOT a blunderbuss. If they weren’t mead drinkers I’d say they need better hobbies.
Batch #1 of Blunderbuss is about 20% Moscato grapes and 80% orange blossom mead, and weighs in at 13.5% A.B.V.
We plan to make a Blunderbuss batch #2, but with Riesling instead.
What honey will that be made with? Will it be delicious? Will that bee ever surrender his weapon? Stay tuned to find out.