Capital Hive Meadery, the first commercial meadery in Loudoun County and all of the Northern Virginia suburbs, has started construction on its new space and just this week officially received its ABC license. If all goes as planned, they hope to start selling their products around the holidays.
The meadery is opening in Leesburg in a space on Sycolin Road just across from the Leesburg Airport. To start, the enormous space will primarily be a production facility making a wide variety of mead each month — available for retail sales or shipping in state and out of state. There is also a membership option that puts you first on the list for batches of mead and special perks. The principals behind Capital Hive hope to open a small tasting room for the general public in early 2021.
The company was actually founded three years ago, but there have been a lot of hurdles getting to this point. That’s because Loudoun County zoning laws weren’t written with a meadery in mind. Technically, mead is a type of wine made with honey. But zoning laws for wineries usually expect huge amounts of land for vineyards. They struggled to place a winery in a commercial business park.
The meads at Capital Hive Meadery will run the gamut from sweeter, slightly thicker meads akin to a dessert wine to lighter meads closer to a cider. Some may even have carbonation. Flavors will include their popular Raspberry White Chocolate Cheesecake, as well as others flavored with blackberry currants, vanilla, cinnamon and other fruits and spices. A word of warning — the alcohol content in mead can also be higher than some might expect. Some are in the 5 percent range, but many of them will be around 14 percent ABV, so watch out.
Meanwhile, Stone House Meadery has been making honey fermented meads for several years at their farm winery property in Purcellville. While not a commercial meadery, we’ve heard their meads — including a lavender mead — are delicious.