This is mead but it is paw paw

Was thinking of trying my hand at mead making came across this. Label says paw paw mead and I think it’s from Georgia.


Cool, did you taste it or is it just a pic you found on the web? Mead with fruit added like the one you’ve shared is technically considered melomel. I’ve made cider and I’ve made beer, but never tried making mead. Maybe that will be next for me since apple season is many months away.


Haven’t made one yet was thinking about a traditional first and then try a melomel. Was reading Reddit for tips and someone posted this. I never even considered paw paw fruit.
Also wanted to try my hand at hard cider as well since my trees are mostly 6 years now

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Pawpaw is popular with beer makers and to a lesser degree distillers (brandy)

I’ve never tasted either one though.

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I have yet to see any alcohol with paw paw

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I hope any distilleries using pawpaws take measures to ensure they aren’t accidentally concentrating the annonacin in the fruit during the distillation process. I’m not one of those people concerned about it for regular fresh eating, but depending on how annonacin handles distillation I could see it being a problem. Hopefully it either breaks down from the heat or is removed rather than concentrated, but I’m no chemist so no clue.


I’ve had this one from Strange Roots Brewing The Gran Paw - Strange Roots Experimental Ales - Untappd

Mead is easy to make, it’s just like beer but simpler. I guess I should say it’s harder to mess up than beer, from a beginners perspective. I’m sure there are intricacies in the process to make it top tier just like with beer.

Im not medicaly trained. So take this comment for what it is. A random person writing somthing on the internet!

If your not worried about raw pawpaw’s i see no reason to be worried about brewed pawpaws.
Unles your an alcoholic ony drinking brewed pawpaws that is.

Most pawpaw seem to have 20+% brix. (10-30% range)
Most pawpaws weigh around 200+ grams (half a pound)
Pulp extraction of around 50%
Leaves roughly 100 grams pulp at 20% sugar = 20 grams sugar → 10ml of pure ethanol.
A standard US drink is around 18ml of pure ethanol.
So drinking a brewed pawpaw drink made of 100% pawpaw would be equivalent to eating a little less than 2 whole pawpaws.

However, some of the toxin might be broken down due to heat etc.
And most of the time, due to the expense of the pawpaws. Only a little pawpaw gets added to the recipe. For flavor, not as a fermenting sugar source.

asuming 25% pawpaw in recipe and a standard 18ml pure alchohol US drink. You can drink 2 full US drinks for an equivalent to eating 1 pawpaw.

Since your not supposed to drink more than 1-2 drinks anyway. (alcohol damages brain etc)
It should not be a problem. Unless your using it excessively. But that goes for everything. (excessive drinking of water killed a person)

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Yeah, I doubt any non-distilled fermented beverage (mead/beer/melomel/wine) would be a problem, I just know that you have to be careful when using a still because sometimes you accidentally concentrate undesirable compounds along with the alcohol if they have a similar condensation point.

I’m guessing the heat probably breaks down annonacin though, which means my concern is invalid in either context.

Im not so sure the heat will brake down annonacin.
I could not find reliable data on that. I did find they extract it with 100C methanol. Although this does not mean it does not significantly degrade by 100 degree celcius. (extraction could be verry short)
It does lead me to suspect it does not completly degrade or at all at 100 celcius.

My main point however is, that the proportion to toxines and sugar/alchohol remains constant.
So unles your drinking distilled drinks from a beer glas. It should not be a problem.

You might concentrate the annonacin. But your also concentrating the alchohol by the same factor. So the proportions of annonacin to alchohol remain reletivly constant.

I am curious though. Do you know of any alchoholic drinks that are safe when not distiled? but become dangerous when you distil them?

For example. 1 liter of drink A, with 5% alcohol and 1 unit that might not be healty.
Will distil into 1/8th liter of drink B with 40% alcohol and ??more than 1 unit of ‘toxine’ ??

i am probably overlooking somthing. But i’d expect the proportion of ethanol to ‘toxine’ to be relativly constant.

There is a danger though if your seperating the first few % of the distilled liquid from the rest. or the last few %. Since if a ‘toxine’ evaporates at a slighty higher or lower temp than enthanol. It will get concentrated in those first or last few %. However if all of the end product is mixed. The proportion should be constant again.

Most distillation processes do exactly this, where you discard or reserve for flavoring the parts that come first (heads) and last (tails) from the main liquor (heart).

In college, a buddy of mine was a botany/chemistry grad student and of course (as one does) he made stuff like absinthe and gin, but was always very concerned with the botanical extractions for anything potentially toxic (e.g. wormwood). He explained it to me ad nauseam so it’s always stuck in my memory as something to be concerned about for distilling unusual plants, but probably unjustifiably so.

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Thanks for the reply swincher.

That makes perfect sense.
Would be inportant to not seperate different fractions from distiled pawpaw.

Also id think the wormwood that he was distilling would also give you problems if you ate it all raw. Dangerous herb when used irresponsibly.
I don’t think the problem lies as much in the distilling. As in the thing you are distilling. (if you don’t seperate the distilled fractions that is)