Portland’s first mead-only tasting room and bottle shop, Mead Market opens October 1, 2016 at 1744 SE Hawthorne Blvd., Portland, Oregon. It’s brought to you by Matt Reed and Jill McKenna of Bee Thinking, Portland’s leading independent beekeeping company.
Mead is an ancient alcoholic beverage brewed from honey. It has a surging popularity with production doubling between 2012 and 2014. There are about 400 meaderies in the US now, compared with under 75 just five years ago. One undoubtedly popular aspect of mead is that many varieties are gluten and grain free, although some varieties such a braggot include grains.
You can taste and buy mead at Mead Market. A tasting counter will feature a variety of meads of different styles, many of them from the local area. You can taste the meads on tap and fill growlers to take home.
Over 100 different mead labels will be available by the bottle in the shop to take home. Local meaderies include Fringe Meadery, Stung Fermented, Ethereal Meads, Nectar Creek and Hierophant.
If you’d like to join the mead movement, you can buy a mead-making kit and join in classes to learn how to ferment mead and how to taste and pair mead with cheese.
The different varieties of mead yield very different pairings. Some meads are not at all sweet, while others are. Some are brewed in an ale style, while others such as cyser include apple juice.
For budding beekeepers, you can also browse the equipment and hives available from Bee Thinking. The staff members are passionate and knowledgeable about bees.
Honey products, including cosmetics, candles, soaps and more are available. You can also buy bulk honey.
Mead Market will be open Sunday-Wednesday 10AM-6PM and Thursday-Saturday 10AM-8PM. It is well worth dropping by to browse.