If history has taught us anything, it’s that you can make booze out of pretty much anything. That said, one TikToker is pushing this idea to its absolute limit.

That TikToker is Charles Biolo. Across social media, Biolo, under the banner of his company Golden Hive Mead, documents his processes making meads from all sorts of foods and drinks. For example, if you’ve ever found yourself longing for a strawberry or tea-based mead, Biolo is your guy.

However, like anyone who gets fully-invested in a hobby, Biolo has recently found himself exploring the limits of the possible. Yes, mead is commonly referred to as “honey wine,” but what if instead of just honey, he used something else? Specifically, what if that “something” was the radioactive gamer fuel we call Mountain Dew?

This isn’t a hypothetical — Biolo actually did that, and now, we sat down with him for a conversation about why and, most importantly, if the resultant Mountain Dew wine is sickening, delicious or both.

Why did you get into mead making?

One of my close family friends was always into home brewing and mead making, and he was always giving my family mead. I also studied biological systems engineering in college, so I had a pretty general idea of fermentation and home brewing, and I knew I was very interested in the hobby. I ended up moving across the country after college, and so, I no longer had my own mead supply and decided to start dabbling with making my own.

In terms of getting involved with social media, at first it was just a way for me to document my own progress and learn from everybody else, because I was a beginner during my first few videos. As much as my followers learn from me, I’m learning from them, too, and that’s kind of how it all kicked off, and it slowly, just grew over time.

Mead is much more popular in the older generation than it is in the younger generation. Part of the purpose of the videos that I make is trying to — not raise awareness, but increase the popularity of mead and show people how good it really is and how easy it is to make. It’s just great introducing new people to the hobby.

What makes mead different from other alcohol?

The first thing I always say when I get asked this question is that it’s most similar to wine. A lot of people have the misconception that it’s more similar to beer, and it’s probably not as sweet as you’d expect it to be. Wine uses fermented grapes, and mead is fermented with honey, and even though you’re using, like, three pounds of honey per gallon, a lot of that sweetness — actually, most or almost none of that sweetness — is present in the final product. But what that honey does is it adds some viscosity to the final product. It’s a little bit thicker than a wine, I’d say, and you can customize it with any sort of fruit you want, whereas with wine you have a left and right limit as to what you can do. With mead, you can do pretty much whatever you want to do with it, as you’ve seen with the Mountain Dew video and many more experimental videos to come.

Have you ever had any mead-making experiments go awry?

To be honest, I got really lucky with not having many experiments gone bad, but there are certainly recipes that I’ve tried that haven’t been my favorite. One example I can think of is the mango habañero recipe. I fermented mangoes with habañeros and honey, and it was extremely spicy. It was virtually undrinkable at the end. But I ended up using that final product in a lot of my cooking recipes. I made shrimp tacos and chicken wings, and it was great for that. I love trying new things, but that was probably my biggest shock from a batch I’ve made, pending some of the new ones.

Well, let’s get into the main topic — the Mountain Dew mead. Simply put, why?

There’s a mead group on Facebook, it’s just called “Mead,” and within that group, people are always going back and forth about the possibilities of what can happen if you ferment random things. People are always saying, “What would happen if you ferment soda? Or tea? Or marshmallows?” Whatever you can think of, it’s probably been tried, to some extent. But there’s not a lot of documentation of that happening on the internet.

Then, people started talking about the idea of a Mountain Dew mead. I thought it was the perfect opportunity to try to expand my audience and get new people involved in mead making that are unfamiliar with the topic, and also do something funny and interesting in the process. I’m getting just as much joy out of this as everybody else is, and I’m excited to see what happens.

Obviously, it’s still early days and not finished yet. But can you describe the taste so far?

I can’t believe how good it’s turning out to be. It’s not just me; I think everybody expected the worst, and it started out as kind of a joke. But the carbonation is gone, a lot of the acidity went away, and so what we’re getting as it develops is this subtle lime and citrus honey wine, which is turning out to be quite pleasant. I think with some age, and once fermentation is completely done, we’ll have to see if I want to sweeten it up later and make some adjustments — it’s very early to taste it and try to estimate what the final product will be like. But it’s better than expected.

Do you have any idea about how alcoholic it will be at this stage?

The final product should be 14 and a half percent, assuming it ferments completely dry, which this yeast is fully capable of doing.


Yeah. it’ll pack a punch.

What are your plans for the Mountain Dew mead once it’s done?

The interesting part about the home-brewing world is that there’s very strict laws and regulations with selling your homemade product, and especially depending on what state you’re in. But generally, you can’t sell anything you make if it’s not in a commercially regulated facility. But what I do plan to do is make as much content as I can with it as I can — I have a recipe book and kits that I have available on my website, and I plan on adding a section that includes more of the experimental recipes. This will definitely be included in that, so if you want the exact recipe I used, you’ll have access to that when it’s finished.

It’s good to know I’ll soon be able to make my own Baja Blast mead. In terms of your mead-making, can you reveal any of your future experiments?

There are a few things in the works, some probably more extreme than others. I’ll say that two of the most highly requested meads that I need to make following the Mountain Dew mead are Dr Pepper and Monster Energy. I thought Mountain Dew was wild, but Monster Energy mead might take it to a whole new level. But that’s what’s to come in terms of mead making in the near future.

Outside of that, there are some interesting projects in the works that I think everybody is going to be super excited about. I can’t reveal too much, but I will say that people who are interested in making their own mead are going to be very excited about that announcement when it comes, hopefully in the next few weeks.

I also encourage people to give it a try themselves if they’re looking for a new hobby, or if they’re looking for something to do with their friends or family. It’s a great hobby to get into.