What is Bee Well Meadery?
Bee Well Meadery has been a labor of love for us over the last five years. We are two brothers, Chris and Jeremy VanSice, who have been experimenting with fermented beverages for years. For the last five years we've been focused on making mead and it has become our passion. Under the tutelage of Nels "The Mead Man" Velliquette we have dialed in our recipes and created mead that placed first in the 2012 Mazer Cup.
Our family has lived in the area between Clam Lake, Lake Bellaire, and Torch Lake for six generations. We have a special love of the area and we want to bring you the flavor of this spectacular spot. Our bees travel to local orchards and farms and create a honey that truly represents the flavors of Northern Michigan. We source our fruit as close to the meadery as possible by working with those same local farmers whose crops our bees helped to pollinate.
The meadery is well underway. We have a building. We have federal and state approval. We have several formulas approved by the TTB (Tax and Trade Bureau AKA "The Feds"). We just need some final infrastructure before we can bring out mead to the masses.
What is mead?
Mead is a wine made from fermenting honey. It is the oldest alcoholic beverage in the world. It can be made sweet or it can be made dry. It can be fermented with fruit and/or spices. It can be sparkling or still. It can be a low alcohol summer refresher or a 18% viking skullsplitter. For many years mead was simply a novelty relegated to bottom of dusty shelves or found exclusively at the Renaissance Fair. The past few years mead has made a resurgence and has been featured in the New York Times, NPR, and Forbes as the new 'it" beverage.
Where will the funding go? Or why "The Man" won't bring us down!
This project is well underway but The Man stopped us in our tracks when he saw our water situation. We aren't going to let The Man bring us down. The funds raised from Kickstarter will be used to drill water well and install a septic system for our building along with a few other odds and ends (heating and cooling). The building has been a nights and weekends project for Jeremy the last five years. We just need to fund the last few big ticket items to begin production. Any funds available after the necessary infrastructure will be used to purchase additional production equipment like fermenting tanks and a multivalve bottle filler. These will be helpful but are not required to begin production. A successful Kickstarter campaign will allow us to begin making mead much sooner.
What's in it for you?
-You'll get the cool rewards described on the right.
-You'll be supporting local agriculture. You'll be supporting local farmers. These farmers are our friends and neighbors who work their ass off to to grow amazing fruit.
-You’ll be supporting a small business that will be a responsible member of the community and hopefully employ people in the future.
-You'll help to keep bee colonies alive and thriving in Bellaire.
-You'll get the satisfaction of being a member of a community that helped kick start this small business.
How can you help?
-Participate by picking a reward on the right.
-Tell a friend. Tell a neighbor. Tell the guy next to you at the store. Share this with your Facebook friends. Send an email to friends. Tell your Twitter followers. Spreading the word will go a long way to making this campaign a success. Like us on Facebook here:
Risks and challenges
This project is well underway. It has been a nights and weekends project for the last five years. We just need to purchase some larger ticket items. The biggest hurdle will be spreading the word about the Kickstarter campaign. To overcome this we have built a network of contacts who will spread the word throughout various related communities and media outlets. We have a great product and a great location. Now all we need is your help.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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