Making mead - raw vs. processed honey

When brewing mead, are there any benefits or detriments to using raw honey vs. processed honey?

It depends on the processing involved but most meadmakers prefer their honey to be minimally processed.

Processing sometimes includes heating to make the honey pass through filters easier. This heating can degrade the delicate flavors of some honeys.

Some meadmakers believe even filtering alone is bad.

I don’t know if you are familiar with the forums at but there are people over there who have forgotten more about meadmaking than I will ever know. I am sure you would get a ton of good answers to this question over there.

The claims that raw honey is superior to processed are analogous to “organic” produce being superior to “factory farmed”.
This being GQ, I’ll keep my toes out of that water.
Be advised that were there not some filtering taking place, honey extracted from comb, liquid honey, would contain bee parts, pollen, bits of wax and sundry organic material which if not detracting from visual appeal would contribute to crystallization.
The heat which expedites filtering is much lower than generated in the controversy regarding flavour loss thereof.
One benefit to be claimed by raw honey for mead is in pollen acting as yeast nutrient, but even in raw form the content is too low and needs supplement.

Never had any problems using either.

With the caveat that you’d better watch out just HOW processed that honey is. If you use the stuff that comes in the little plastic bear bottles, or similarly processed honey, it can contain stuff to make it flow easier and not crystalize as fast. Not necessarily stuff I want to put in my mead.

i have made it twice, using commercial honey and champaigne yeast. Both times, it came out like a dry white wine-no honey flavor to speak of. is mead supposed to be sweet?

Mead can be sweet or dry, depending on how you make it. If you put a strong yeast (like your champagne yeast) in there, it will ferment out to dryness. If you want a sweeter mead, you need a yeast that doesn’t ferment all the sugars, leaving some residual sweetness behind. Try, for example, White Labs Sweet Mead yeast.

Like pulykamell says. It’s a matter of adjusting the amount of honey against the capacity of the yeast. If you use a lot of honey, say, more than 3 pounds per gallon, but use a yeast that doesn’t tolerate more than about 10% alcohol, there’s going to be a lot of sugars left undigested and you’ll get a sweeter mead. But if you use a yeast that will tolerate something like 18% alcohol (the top end), you may end up with a very alcoholic, dry mead.