Colleen Bos calls it her “passion” job, making mead at Bos Meadery, the first of its kind in Madison
Author: Otehlia Cassidy
Colleen Bos is excited. She is about to celebrate her last week at her “paying” job, to move full time into her “passion” job, making mead. Bos started making mead about eleven years ago, and her business, Bos Meadery, is taking off.
Mead is the oldest fermented beverage in the world, made simply from honey, water and yeast. Though many people think mead originated in Great Britain, Bos says that the earliest evidence of mead production and consumption was actually found in Africa and China.
Bos and her life partner Peter DeVault were seasoned home brewers but turned in earnest to mead-making after trying their hand at a batch—and loving it. Part of the lure was the brewing process itself, but Bos’s passion for mead was also driven by her interest in medieval history and literature. “My first batch of mead was the Wildflower, but the Pomegranate Pyment was the first one I made that I thought I could produce commercially,” Bos says. “I call it the gateway mead. It’s very easy to drink. It’s hands down our best seller, and it has won awards internationally and nationally.”
Bos Meadery, Madison’s first meadery, started production in its current location at 849 E. Washington Ave. in July 2012, producing about 1,500 gallons per year in small batches. A tasting room, which they host in the adjoining Tamarack Studio & Gallery, is the most recent expansion of their business. Every Thursday, Friday and Saturday, Bos and J.D. Ball, her first employee, offer tastings of their six mead flavors to the public. The gallery is decorated with local art, and small round high tops are set up throughout the space. It is a perfect place to gather with friends and become a mead convert.
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