HAMMERED HONEY — Viking-themed honey mead enterprise finds home in Orangefield

Published 12:30 am Wednesday, November 2, 2022

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ORANGEFIELD — Hammered Honey Farms and Mead is gathering attention as family run, honey farm and meadery specializing in raw honey products and fine melomel meads.

Owners Kevin and Jenni Bryant are staying busy with free events and giveaways, and hope to open a tasting room, named Valhalla, in January or February.

The farm and tasting room are located at 2801 Linscomb Road in Orange.

The Viking-themed Valhalla is a gothic barn-shaped building that is similar to neighboring barns. However, the interior displays a wooden bar with stools for lone drinkers and tables and chairs for larger crowds.

A flat screen television hangs in front of the bar above a large rack of various flavors of honey mead labeled with Viking names such as Loki or Freya.

The outside seating of Valhalla features a lit patio with picnic tables and fire pits.

“My wife and I began this journey in 2017,” Kevin Bryant said. “Two years later, we filed our LLC (A Limited Liability Company). As soon as our TABC (Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission) license comes in, we will open.”

The outside seating of Valhalla features a lit patio with picnic tables and fire pits. (Courtesy photo)

The Bryants enjoy a Scandinavian background, and as Norse practitioners, named their business from Thor’s hammer.

“Generally, I believe all religion is the difference between good and bad, and right and wrong, evil and good,” Kevin Bryant said. “And we are no different.”

The 20 meads are named after Norse gods that belong to two major clans: Æsir and Vanir.

“Odin, Frigg, Thor, Loki, Balder, Hod, Heimdall and Tyr are the most elevated representatives of Æsir and are known as the main gods,” he said. “The second clan, Vanir, contains the fertility gods and count Njord, Freyr, and Freyja as their most notable members.”

In a year, the business creates 200 gallons and ferments the honey mead with fruits to create each flavor.

“We have our own bee farms to harvest, but we also buy from Texas Southern Gold Honey in Vidor,” Kevin Bryant said. “We purchase our fruit from local Texas farmers. “We go to Jenschke Orchards in Fredericksburg for our peaches and strawberries. Our Mayhaws come from the Bridge City Chamber of Commerce, blackberries and blue berries come from Brown’s Berry farm or M&M’s Berry farm, watermelons come from Sugar Town and we grow our own muscadines. We prefer to pick our own fruit so I know where it is coming from, and I can inspect everything.”

The difference between mead and wine is that wine uses grapes and ferments with sugar. Whereas mead uses honey and fruit to ferment.

“Drinking mead will not create a hangover headache like wine because wine has a lot of Tannin to it,” Kevin Bryant said. “And that Tannin mixes with the sugar chemically during fermentation, which creates the wine headache. So, you can drink mead and get drunk but not suffer the consequences the next morning.”

Bryant said that during the winter months, he recommends his two spiced options Thor and Idun.

“They are an orange spice and an apple spice,” he said. “I can see those pairing well outside, around a fire and in a coffee cup as a warm drink.”

Follow the business on Facebook for free mead tastings and the grand opening date.

— Written by Sierra Kondos