Sima -- traditional Finnish mead

The mythical drink of the gods, heroes and poets :beer: This thread was inspired by the (Group Ritual - Jan 18) :zap: Þorrablót Midwinter Ritual for Strength ritual :sparkles:

This traditional Finnish variety is based on sugar instead of honey, and generally has a lower alcoholic content, something like 1–3%. Or more if you prefer, it all comes down to fermentation. I’m trying this recipe for the first time and documenting here what happens.

I’m going to be using metric units here because they’re used in Scandinavia, and more importantly, I’m more familiar with them :smile_cat:

The ingredients:

  • 5 liters of water
  • 250 grams of brown sugar
  • 250 grams of white sugar
  • A lemon
  • A handful of raisins
  • Yeast of your preferred kind

For making the mead, a 5 liter sealable container, and a cooking pot that can hold at least 2 liters of water.

The Light phase

To make the light, cold phase, first peel the lemon, and put the peels in the sealable container, together with one liter of cold water. Slice what’s left of the lemon and put that in too. It should look something like this:

So sunny :blush: :sun:

The Dark phase

The ominous looking Dark phase :black_heart:
Heat up two liters of water in the pot. Once it’s boiling, add the sugar and mix it in. Stir in some of your darkest intentions, but remember that you’re still going to drink it. It should look something like this:

Draught of the Living Death vibes right here. :flushed:

Combining the phases

Wait until the dark phase has cooled down a little, and pour it together with the light phase. Give it a little stir, and you’ll have a delicious smelling light brown liquid :drooling_face: You can give it a taste if you want, but it isn’t that delicious while warm.

The yeast

To give the mead life and spirit, it needs yeast. I used some dry yeast, used for wine making. For that you’ll need a precision scale, or keep halving the package amount until it matches the amount you’re going to make.

Another option is to use fresh yeast, the kind used in baking. For that the recommended amount is about the size of a pea.

Whichever you choose, dissolve it in a cup of warm (not hot) water, stir to break up any clumps. Let it wake up for about 15 minutes and then mix it into the container. You’re ready to go! :partying_face:

The fermentation

Close the container with a lid, but don’t make it airtight. Or if you do, crack it every few hours to not let too much pressure build, you don’t want it to explode all over the walls as fun as it sounds. A warm, but not hot place is ideal for fermentation. And darkness, because that’s where all growth happens.

Here’s mine in the sauna:

This would also be the place to add the raisins if I didn’t forget to buy them :laughing: Once they’ve floated to the surface, the mead should be ready. Which should take about 3 days, after which you can bottle it.

I’ll keep you posted how it goes :sparkling_heart:


Sounds goooood! I can’t wait to see how it turns out! :blush::purple_heart:


This is really neat! And it’s fun that it has such a gentle alcoholic percent too- it would be a nice, light accompaniment to dinner :blush:

What a fun way to know it’s ready! And wow just 3 days, that’s not bad at all.

I’ve been making homemade cold-press soap and we have to wait 5 weeks until the bars can be used. It’s an exercise in patience that I have been failing (I caved and used the first batch at week 4) :joy:

Hooray! :tada: This has been a delight to read- I’m keeping my fingers crossed for you and wishing for a very tasty batch of Sima!

Thanks for sharing and happy crafting, @CelestiaMoon~! :beers: :two_hearts:


Thank you for the encouragement @Sivonnah and @BryWisteria :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:
It seems to be bubbling nicely already :blush: :beer:


My brain thanks you. :laughing:

Ooh. Beautiful. :black_heart:

I am tempted to also try this. :thinking:

I’ve done this before. :laughing: I was at work and my partner was at home when it exploded.

Yay! I’m looking forward to it. :grin:


It smells so good already :blush:
And it’s somewhat sparkling too :sparkles:

I had a walk through a dark forest and on my way picked up a box of raisins :smile_cat:
No need to get it exactly right the first time, the result can still be just as good :kissing_heart:

I’d love to hear how it goes if you do :black_heart:

Oh dear! :joy:
Did they make it through with clean underwear? I’m not sure I would :laughing:
Was it in bottles already? :champagne:

And I’m happy to satisfy you, always! :smile_cat: :sparkling_heart:


Yes. :laughing: They’ve had to hear much worse explosions growing up, so they’re a bit more resilient, I think. I jump at everything. :sweat_smile: They jump at absolutely nothing.

Nope, it was in a container like yours! I had maybe, possibly… forgotten about it. :face_with_peeking_eye:



That’s exciting~! :star_struck: Not long now, c’mon mead! :partying_face:


Time to bottle now! :smile_cat:

First step: take off the citrus remains and the raisins, and filter into a cup more suitable for pouring

Step 2: pour into bottles. Washed soda bottles work well.

Step 3: add sugar if you want more fermentation. I’m going to dedicate one bottle for this experiment and see how it goes. Also you can add more raisins if you want.

Step 4: put the bottles in the fridge. Taste if you want but it’s more tasty cold :yum:

Now there’s the danger of explosion :boom: so I better keep an eye on them! :laughing:

Just a few more hours :drooling_face: :beer:


It’s good :yum: :beer:
Has some body to it. Very sweet. Definitely more than 1% alcohol. :sparkling_heart:


No explosions? :smile:

Ooh. :wink:

I’m looking forward to trying this. :black_heart:


No explosions yet! :sweat_smile:

Feel free to use this thread to document your findings! :wink:

The mead I got was very sweet :blush:
When I say it has some body to it… I mean, it’s not thick, but kinda syrupy tasting still, has to be all the brown sugar! :smile: I like it, but it can make things a little slimy in the airways if enjoyed too much, and that’s not pleasant :sweat_smile:

I dedicated one of the bottles for an experiment… a bit more yeast. It should convert some of the sugar into alcohol… let’s see what happens :smiling_imp:


I’m looking forward to seeing how that comes out! :blush:


It turned out really nice :blush:

If I were to make this again with the same amount of sugar, I’d put in a little bit more yeast and let it ferment for a couple of days more. Not too sugary anymore, and while there is a bit of alcohol, it doesn’t taste too bitter. :sparkling_heart:


Woohooo!!! Sounds like it was a very successful project with a very tasty result :yum: Cheers, Celestia! :beers:

It sounds like a bit of experimentation led to the perfect amounts/timing. This is awesome! Thank you for sharing your step-by-step process, I’m going to hang onto the recipe for the future. As a bit of a honey monster myself, I’ll probably switch the brown sugar for honey :honey_pot: :sparkles:

Thanks again- enjoy your tasty treat! :beer: :two_hearts:


Cheers~ :smile_cat: :beers:
It was fun taking this tasty journey with you, and I’d love to hear how it goes if you want to try it out too – even more so if you want to alter the recipe for your tastes! :yum:


I’ve got my brewing jug and little air lock thing all ready to go- now I just need the time and energy to gather the ingredients and make a batch! :grin:

Thanks again for the guide and the inspiration, @CelestiaMoon! :heart: :hugs:


Yay, I’m excited to hear how it goes @BryWisteria! :blush: :sparkling_heart:


@CelestiaMoon :hugs: :two_hearts:


@BryWisteria :hugs: :kissing_heart: :pink_heart:

I realized one additional thing to fine tune the taste and consistency :blush: The mead has quite a bit of body to it, very fine material from the yeast, citrus and other ingredients, it’s quite earthy. If you want to make it more airy and fresh, you can filter it through a cheesecloth or a coffee filter. If you want something in between, you can only filter part of it and mix it together :sparkling_heart: