Don’t Kill My Buzz! that is the logo of the new Ironstone Meadery in Erie. We have wine, craft beer and now mead. What is mead? The owners call it golden elixir..it is a fermented honey drink that originated in Nordic countries. So of course the logo is a nordic bee!
I had a preconceived notion of what the mead would taste like when I went to visit..and it was completely upended by the time I had finished six samples of their various flavors. I expected sweet and syrupy..and what I got was complex–sometimes sweeter and sometimes tart, but never cloyingly sweet. A great alternative to either wine or beer. (Also very appropriate to drink while watching Game of Thrones…the soundtrack of which was playing during our visit.)
It is a bit of a drive (about 20 minutes from the Inn, but well worth the drive. The two couples who are the owners say they conceived the idea on April Fool’s Day..but since opening in April of 2018, they have made over 1,200 gallons of mead and used 4,500 pounds of honey. They gather the honey from all over North and South America, and both the individual honey and the other flavorings bring unique tastes to each type of mead. The names of the mead are as fun and quirky as the owners–we tried
“Bloody Berry” (Black Currant and strawberry flavored with 10.6% alcohol–surprisingly complex in flavor),
“Holy Apple” (one of my favorites with a true tart apple flavor 9% alcohol)
“Valhalla Vanilla” (creamy vanilla flavor with 9% alcohol)
“Level 1 Acolyte” (great tart cherry flavor, 8% alcohol)
“Caught in the Rain” (pineapple coconut flavor with 12.5% alcohol)
“Screw your Passion” (passion fruit flavor..and I got some grapefruit..12.2% alcohol)
and finally two buckwheat traditional brews…each done by one of the brewers:
“Buck You” and “Bucking Wheat” at 16.8% alcohol and 8.8% that tasted a bit like buckwheat pancakes.
They are going to be expanding to the next classroom (they are located in a re-purposed elementary school) soon. They are only open Thursday (4 – 9pm) and Friday-Saturday from 1 – 9pm). To the left is one of the owners Rich Konkol.
So after the wineries have closed…maybe a trip to the Meadery would be fun. I cannot wait to see what new flavors they are able to come up with!