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Video: Mead featured at Bend, Oregon Brewfest

Old school brew making a comeback

Emily Kirk
POSTED: 2:23 PM PDT August 15, 2015

BEND, Ore. – The 2015 Bend Brewfest features 71 different breweries. Two of those are “meaderies” that will be on Cider Row at Les Schwab Amphitheater.

“Mead is actually the oldest known fermented substance on the planet,” the vice president of sales at Stung Fermented, Jack Newkirk, said Friday.

Mead gives festival attendees an alternative to beer.

“There are a lot of questions about mead that people have when they come up,” Newkirk said.

Stung Fermented started in 2013 and joined the market in May of this year. The Portland-based company is still small with only six people working at the northeast Portland operation.

“Right now, there are fewer than 300 commercial meaderies in the United States,” Newkirk said. “We have more breweries than that in just the state of Oregon.”

Stung Fermented’s chief fermentation officer saw a market for mead 20 years ago when he first started working on his recipe.

“I started thinking and thinking about it and ultimately we decided to stop thinking about it and start doing it,” CFO Brooks Cooper said. “We think there is a great opportunity to introduce (mead to) the traditional beer drinker.”

Mead is fermented sugar from honey, which is also gluten-free — an ever-growing growing market.

“It’s an Oregon company, the mead is made by Oregonians, in Oregon, it’s an Oregon product and we’re very proud of that,” Newkirk said.

About Rob

A novice mead maker, but a huge mead enthusiast! I'm also the owner and Site Administrator of TheMeadery.net and reside in Manchester, New Hampshire.