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<p>We are doing a local Christmas and would like to make mead, so I am wondering what the best way would be to go about getting 'local' yeast.  Has anyone had success capturing their own for it?  Could I use my sourdough starter?</p>
 

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<p>Mead is super-easy to get going with natural yeast.  Just mix the honey and water in a sterilized bucket, cover with a linen or non-linty cotton cloth and wait.  Put the bucket in a nice warm place, stir it every day, a few times a day, and after a week or so (or maybe less) it'll start to look a little frothy.  When it gets good and bubbly, siphon it into a carboy, plop an airlock bung thingy in, and let 'er go.  I've found that it takes a couple months for the fermentation to complete though, so if you want holiday mead it might be best to go talk to your local u-brew and see what they suggest wrt commercial yeasts.</p>
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<p>I did naturally fermented sodas for Christmas one year, and that was a lot faster, but I don't recommend it because a lot of people are total crap at reading the directions you put on the label - like "keep very refridgerated, do not agitate, drink within one week, open carefully" and then get all upset when they keep it in a heated garage, knock it over, then open it in their mom's kitchen and have to clean all the walls.  True story.  The mead I did in previous years was much better received.  But I started it in July.</p>
 
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