WYE Valley Meadery are hoping to create a big buzz with their new ‘Hive Mind’ range of canned sparkling drinks, launched on World Bee Day last Saturday (May 20).
Founded and run by Chepstow bee-keeping brothers Matt and Kit Newell five years ago, the Caldicot-based meadery and tap room now trading as Hive Mind Mead & Brew Co are hoping to enjoy the sweet taste of success with their new mead offer.
Available in four flavours – ‘Pure Honey Mead’, ‘Honey & Rhubarb’, ‘Honey & Ginger’ and ‘Honey & Elderflower’ – their canned Hive Mind Sparkling Mead is gluten free, made with natural ingredients, and uses British honey - including honey from their own hives in the Wye Valley, where their beekeeping efforts support local biodiversity, habitat conservation and pollinator populations.
Its the first time their mead has been available in 330ml cans, sold individually or as a boxed four-pack containing one of each flavour. Two more flavours, ‘Sour Cherry’ and ‘Honey & Jops’ will also soon be added to the range.
Showcasing their beekeeping heritage, the sparkling mead cans carry new Hive Mind branding, based around colourful honeycomb illustrations, and highlight the approximately 300,000 flowers visited and 50,000 miles flown by bees to make the honey for every can.
The brothers have starred on TV on the likes of Countryfile and The Hairy Bikers since their business took off.
And they are hoping to tantalise your taste buds with their new canned range, which they have just promoted with a stand at the Farm Shop & Deli show at the NEC in Birmingham as part Food & Drink Wales stand and at BrewLondon.
The brothers have been pioneers in a UK resurgence in mead-making, taking one of the world’s oldest alcoholic drinks and creating new modern styles from session-strength light and refreshing sparkling meads through to stronger, more traditional wine-style and barrel-aged meads.
Kit said: “We’ve been creating new meads which have been at the forefront of growing interest in the product here in the UK, pioneering modern styles and changing perceptions of this versatile drink. Modern mead can stand head to head with beers, wines or spirits for its range of flavour profiles, as a base for cocktails or as a different option for food pairing.
“Our new session strength (4%) Sparkling Mead cans have been created to be light and refreshing, flavoured with natural and seasonal ingredients to make them a great summer drink for all occasions.
“Canning our sparkling mead makes it more portable for outdoor events, easy to chill and it’s a more sustainable option than glass.
“As beekeepers, we understand the importance of protecting nature, supporting pollinators, creating sustainable products and working as part of the community. Our new Hive Mind brand highlights our beekeeping heritage and shares our company’s mission to help the honeybees through the honey we make and our low impact, low intervention approach to brewing, ” he said.
The Hive Mind Sparkling Mead range will be available nationwide from independent retailers, delis and farm shops or direct from Hive Mind’s website. Other Hive Mind products include an award-winning wine-style Traditional Mead, Oak Whiskey Barrel-Aged Traditional Mead and honey beers.
The company says its ‘Pure Honey Mead’ is “a light, sparkling mead brewed on delicious wildflower honey. Pure Honey lets you taste liquid sunshine whenever you need it”.
Its Honey & Rhubarb flavour “combines the fresh flavours of tangy Rhubarb Juice with sweeter honey mead, to create a perfect blend of sweet and sharp. Sparkling mead, delicate and refreshing, it’s like a lovely fizzy rhubarb pie”.
The Honey & Ginger flavour “infuses root ginger into mead for those great fiery and sweet flavours with a little ginger kick”.
And the Honey & Elderflower drink has the “freshness of elderflowers and natural honey, gently fermented together to create sparkling Elderflower Mead. It’s a taste of late spring sunshine in every can”.