There’s a new meadery in town - and their focus - conserving bees.
While they opened doors back in September, Lilly Belle Meads in Lancaster is hosting its official grand opening in just under a week - an opportunity for the WNY community to try, learn and expose themselves to the power of bees.
Mead, which is essentially nothing more than - honey, water, and yeast, is a beverage that’s been around for centuries - all thanks to the honey.
Joe and Patricia Marshall have been brewers for over a decade - making their own beer and wine. But it was Trish’s initial interest in mead that got the couple interested in reviving the oldie but goodie, bringing the community along, and saving bees all at the same time.
“We have tremendous product here. As a member of the Western New York Honey Producers Association, I’ve gotten to know beekeepers from different parts of the area and it makes complete sense that for us to brew the best product, we need to start with the best honey," Trish said.
"These keepers respect the bees, they take care of them and that’s why they produce what I think is some of the best organic product, “ she then continued.
Though the Lilly Belle storefront is new, for the Marshalls bottling and selling their products isn't.
“Our basement is certified. That’s where a lot of our production started. Then we went to farmer’s markets, and just started reaching out and building relationships with breweries - so far the response has been great. Meaderies are pretty unique in this area,” Joe continued.
Hence, education and bee conservation is such a huge component to our success.
"We need the bees to do what we do," he emphasized.
“I get asked everyday about mead and I think it’s such an awesome opportunity to teach people about just how simple it really it - three to five ingredients - at most. Flavors can change based on your taste, but depending not he time of year and where you’re getting the honey from, that’s where the taste really hits home."
So, what can you expect at their grand opening?
Eight creatively name beers on tap, three fruity variations of wine and the opportunity to learn a whole lot about the industry.
The grand opening is on Wednesday, November 22nd.
Extended hours will be: Wednesday - Friday 4 p.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
For more information on their location and grand opening, visit Lilly Belle Meads Facebook page.