Lindenhurst’s W A Meadwerks Buzzes Into 2023
W A Meadwerks, which has popularized the ancient beverage mead on Long Island, is starting off the New Year with changes to its operations in Lindenhurst.
The meadery will close its original tasting room on W. Hoffman Avenue on New Year’s Day and open a new tasting room at its production facility on N. Wellwood Avenue in mid-January.
“We are excited about the move,” said Roger Wanner, owner of the meadery, “and look forward to welcoming our loyal fans to our new space with some new meads and an expanded food menu. The new tasting room is an open space with high ceilings and looks onto the production space, which will allow more interaction for patrons with our meadmakers.”
W A Meadwerks was founded four years ago by Wanner and Joe Abruzzo Jr., who is no longer with the company. The two homebrewers realized that mead, a type of wine made from honey instead of grapes, could lend itself to a variety of styles beyond the traditional sweet still version that dates back to ancient civilizations in China, Crete and Mexico. They focused on perfecting a line of meads that could be served on draft, lightly carbonated with alcohol by volume (ABV) levels ranging from 4% to 7% and taste profiles ranging from dry to semisweet to sweet.
“Since opening our tasting room in September 2018, we’ve made 37 different draft meads,” said Wanner, “with most of them being melomel meads made with fruit such as apples, limes, black currants, raspberries and strawberries.” Wanner added, “Going forward we plan to focus on our most popular styles while continuing to make meads that will be tasting room exclusives.”
After two years of strong growth, the meadery expanded from its original 1,200-square-foot space on W. Hoffman Avenue with the addition in 2020 of a 2,500-square-foot production space on N. Wellwood Avenue. The new production facility enabled W A Meadwerks to ramp up production for distribution to outside accounts across Long Island and upstate New York.
According to Wanner, W A Meadwerks currently has over 100 accounts on Long Island, including draft lines at craft breweries such as Lithology, Noble Savage, and South Shore, and at popular beer bars including Black Sheep Ale House, Garden Social, The Villager, and local favorite The Linden. W A Meadwerks also has about 30 accounts in the Capital Region.
“We are especially popular with stores that have beer and liquor licenses that can sell our full range of canned and bottled meads including our traditional meads going up to 16% ABV,” said Wanner.
The new tasting room will continue to have up to 10 draft meads on tap along with traditional uncarbonated meads such as Show Me the Honey, made with coffee blossom at 12.9%, Don’t Poke the Doughboy, a cinnamon bun mead at 10% ABV, and Paralyzer, a melomel mead with Aronia berries at 14.4%. The tasting room will continue to serve bar pizzas and pretzels while expanding its selection of artisanal cheese plates and charcuterie.
Also new for 2023 will be an enhanced Mead Club, which has been a popular feature for the meadery since its opening. “We are adding a second membership level for 2023 to provide an entry level for customers who may be new to mead and looking to try us out,” said Wanner. Both the gold and silver memberships offer perks including tasting room discounts, exclusive meads, and a club reception.
Wanner is excited to be part of the revitalization of downtown Lindenhurst. “Wellwood Avenue is a very walkable street and we’re developing a real brewers row here,” said Wanner, “being just north of 27A Brewing and Breslau Brewing and only a few blocks north of Sand City South. We look forward to developing relationships with the many restaurants around our new tasting room and continuing to be a vibrant part of this great village.”
W A Meadwerks is located at 290 N. Wellwood Ave. in Lindenhurst. For more info visit wameadwerks.com.
Bernie Kilkelly is the editor and publisher of LIBeerGuide.com.