Wonderfully wet, sinfully sweet!
Heft your mead horns and hold your mugs high,
We want to keep drinking until we do die!
Mead, mead, mead!
It's what a body needs!
It makes us strong and wise and brave,
There's nothing better, it's what we crave!
Mead, mead, mead!
I drink it morning, noon, and eve.
I like it spiced and sweet and powerful,
I'll soon be drunk and that's quite probable,
— A Drinking Song
Mead (also called Nord Mead, or Honey Wine by the Altmer) is an alcoholic beverage made from fermented honey and water, alternatively with molasses, and sometimes strained with mashed grains. It is a very popular drink that can be found primarily in the province of Skyrim, but it can also be seen across the continent of Tamriel, as brewing is the basis of any culture. Mead is very popular among the Nords of Solstheim, who usually import it from mainland Skyrim. Meaderies across the provinces have their own ingredients and recipes, mixing in their own spices and fruits like Juniper Berries.
Mead in Nordic CultureEdit
From the words of the Nordic hunters of Thirsk, Mead is considered the nectar of Shor, and it is the finest drink to grace Nordic lips. Mead has a significant cultural impact on the Nords; it is heavily shared in any tavern across the province, which may be why drinking is a stereotype. Because of their common interest in the beverage, they formed communities around "mead halls," which in turn lead to the formation of large settlements like Whiterun. Even the nordic afterlife, Sovngarde surrounds a mead hall, the Hall of Valor, where it flows freely like a waterfall. Surprisingly enough, Mead is the reason that pockets exist on men's clothing. Nords used hip-flasks to hold portable mead, but because they were very exposed to pickpockets, interior pockets were created. There is a specific point in time in Nordic history known as the "Neo-Meadic Era." The information regarding this time period is unknown.
To the people of Skyrim, drinking is a sub-culture that favors an enduring spirit. The amount of mead a Nord can drink is considered no different than their greatest game or feat, but drinking too much can lead to embarrassing results. There are times that when one is offered mead, it is considered a challenge or a test, but it is can also be seen as a sign of respect, to make amends or to express "no hard feelings." These offerings do not have to happen in a mead hall or town, where everybody knows your name, you can wander Skyrim's boundless wilderness and come across a couple of revelers that are willing to share their celebration. In these revelries, they speak about their glorious feats of Nordic honor. But when they are not boasting their achievements, they are singing and reveling to the tales curated by a Nordic bard, also known as a Skald.
Riften is the burgeoning capital of mead-making in Skyrim, home to its famous blackberry mead and the meaderies owned by the Black-Briar family. In the Fourth Era, the Black-Briar Mead were bitter rivals with the Honningbrew Mead of Whiterun, a sentiment passed onto its consumers. It had gotten to the point where the Black-Briar Clan enlisted the Thieves Guild to sabotage the Honningbrew Meadery with pest poison. Riften's signature mead is used when making their iconic cheeses, the Riftwash. It is washed in the blackberry mead several times and later shrouded in wax dyed by the blackberry must from the meaderies. There is a misconception about Riftwash in which that it attains its black color from the muddy and sodden waters of Lake Honrich.
Known Mead HallsEdit
- For game-specific information, see the Bloodmoon and Skyrim articles.
- For a list of different varieties of mead, see the Alcoholic Beverages article.
- Item name in Bloodmoon and Skyrim
- Thenephan's Mysteries of Mead — Daria Thenephan
- Svenja Snow-Song's dialogue in Bloodmoon
- Reinhardt Red-Spear's dialogue in Bloodmoon
- Proventus Avenicci's dialogue in Skyrim
- The Road to Sovngarde
- Lady Eloisse Answers Your Questions — Lady Eloisse, Fifth Countess Manteau
- Narsis Dren and the Cursed Coffin — Narsis Dren, Treasure Hunter
- Reveler's dialogue in Skyrim
- Dampened Spirits faction quest in Skyrim
- Cheeses of Skyrim: Riften, Falkreath — B.