Denver’s amazing craft beverage scene includes beers of an almost infinite variety; from traditional English ales and 12 CheersGerman lagers, to experimental blends incorporating spice, juice and spirits. The scene also includes distilleries, wineries, cider houses and meaderies.  For Day 11 of the 12 Cheers of Christmas, we celebrate Queen Bee Brews, a meadery we chanced upon in an industrial zone just up Washington Street from RiNo’s brewery fantasyland.

Once you step inside the warm, honey-toned tasting room, you’ll feel comforted and welcome by the Mead Mistress, Deborah. We arrived just at closing and she was kind and generous with her willingness to share her delicious seasonal brew: Pomona. Brewed from a blend of cyser (honey and cider) and spices, then aged in rum barrels, this is a wholly unique sipping experience. The nose intoxicates! Before letting a drop pass your lips, linger over the aroma and savor its complexity. Not as sweet or thick in body on the tongue as regular mead, this is more like a sumptuous liqueur. Perfect to curl up and enjoy by the fire with a loved one!

Queen Bee offers many meads, from a traditional style to blends incorporating juices of various fruits and spices.

Fun fact: Deborah explained that Pomona, the name of her seasonal brew, comes from the Roman goddess of fruit and fruit trees, gardens and orchards, whose careful attention and protection brought abundance and plentiful harvests. Sounds like our kinda gal!

Deborah, for your generous spirit and passion for introducing us to a whole new sipping genre – cheers!


Celebrate the season by tasting the locally-crafted beverages of these nearby wineries:

Kingman Winery is family-run, right next door to Queen Bee. Their delightful tasting room boasts delicious, locally-crafted wines. Devoted to using only Colorado-grown grapes whenever possible, mostly western slope, they are passionate advocates for Colorado’s wine industry.

Balistreri Vineyards, just down the road, is also family-run and is known for their sulfite-free wines.  They offer simple but tasty lunches and small plates.

Crave beer? Nearby RiNo offers these notable craft beer brewers:

Mockery Brewing offers a variety of brews and a fanciful outdoor patio.

Black Shirt Brewing is known for its red ales and artsy, hipster crowd. Food trucks frequently offer tasty fare to enjoy inside with your brew..

Crooked Stave, inside The Source, is known for its sour beers. If you’re new to sours, we suggest a flight to sample the various levels of sour before committing to a full pint!

Blue Moon Brewing may be a corporate stooge, but their adventurous selection of beers, full service restaurant and new RiNo digs in an old brick warehouse with fire pits out front, make it an irresistible draw on chilly holiday season nights.

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