New venture raises the horns to Sussex County mead-making
By Christina Weaver
Special to the Coastal Point
Brimming Horn Meadery recently opened on Route 9, west of Lewes. Although locally-owned craft breweries and wineries are now commonplace in Sussex County, the Brimming Horn is the only meadery in Delaware south of Wilmington.
One of the challenges for business partners Jon Talkington and J.R. Walker is to introduce mead — the oldest known alcoholic beverage in the world — to many people who have never even heard of it.
Mead is basically the result of fermenting honey and water. Primitive people probably came across it accidentally after bees settled in a hollow tree and then their honey was exposed to rain. A 7,000-year-old drinking bowl containing actual remnants of mead was discovered in China. As is the nature of humans to improve upon what nature provides, mead has been continuously enhanced with yeast, fruit, herbs, flowers ever since.
Although mead is consumed around the world, and is especially enjoyed in Ethiopia, where it is called “tej,” the drink is most commonly associated with Nordic countries, their culture and mythologies. According to Talkington, the symbol for the Brimming Horn itself is a horn overflowing with mead — also known as “the nectar of the gods” and ‘the drink of kings.” A brimming horn would be passed amongst friends and kinsmen to drink, boast, make oaths and bond people together.
“We hope our mead will be able to do just that amongst everyone drinking it,” said Talkington who is the Brimming Horn’s meadmaker.
Meadery Profile: Brimming Horn Meadery