Charm City Meadworks was born out of a love of adventure and learning.
Co-owner James Boicourt began keeping bees in college where he took graduate-level entomology classes. When his hives produced way more honey than excepted, he decided to try to use some of the excess honey to make alcohol. The experiment worked and a hobby was born.
After college, James’s love for the water led him to a job at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, where he met fellow brew enthusiast and future co-owner Andrew Geffken. Andrew had been working environmental consultant desk-jobs, but dreamed of starting a brewing business.
One day Andrew tried some of James’s mead. Working together, what started as a hobby (something served at an annual Viking party) quickly became a full-fledged business. It turns out that the oldest alcoholic beverage in history is still relevant, and more importantly, delicious.
Abandoning engineering and sustainability jobs to work a lot more for a lot less (but have a great time doing it!), James and Andrew launched Baltimore City's only meadery in early 2014. Ever since, they've been movin' and brewin'. Charm City and the nectar of the gods are a match made in heaven.
See who we are, and what everyone has to say about us, below.
The Meadworks Crew
James Boicourt // Co-Owner & MeadMAker
James is the senior meadmaker, keeper of secret recipes, and ultimate tinkerer at CCMW. Before Charm City, he worked most recently in remotely controlled underwater robotics, but has also held positions as a commercial crabber, a boat builder, a hot rod shop operator, and even a pool snack bar operator. His hobbies include gluing fur onto dashboards, and hanging out with friends on Artemis II.
James' mead of choice: Retire by the Fire
Andrew Geffken // Co-Owner & Head of Experiments & Sales
Andrew does a little bit of everything, but mainly manages everything outside Meadworks and assists James with production. Before Charm City, Andrew worked in sustainability and knows the carbon footprint of a Skittle. Now he keeps the Meadworks green by doing small deliveries and customer visits via bicycle.
Andrew's mead of choice: Hops
Elliot Madre // Assistant Meadmaker
Fulfilling the role of jack-of-all-trades in training, Elliot recently moved from North Carolina to help out the CCMW team. Before working here, he has gained experience in various fields such as programming, wilderness training, restaurant management, IT, and music. He will probably do this for a few years before getting bored and pursuing, I don't know, lion-taming or something.
Elliot's mead of choice: Raspberry Coconut
Ben C. Smith // Distribution & Farmers Markets
Ben has been a farmers market manager and distributor for CCMW since the company began. He takes great pleasure in the chemistry of mead-making and tries his best to make sure safety comes first at CCMW. Ben is a scientific and medical illustrator by trade, having done work for the Discovery Channel, History Channel, National Geographic, and many more. Unfortunately, no one wants to pay artists anything these days, so the scientific world's loss is the Meadworks' gain! Go Apis mellifera!
Ben's mead of choice: Cinnamon
Hillary Harris // MD Sales Manager
Hillary is spreading the word to Baltimore and its surrounding counties (and soon, the world). Previously she was a salesperson at DuClaw Brewing, and even has a bee tattoo. She's all over town, and if you ask nicely she might give you some mead or drop some knowledge about bee entomology.
Hillary's mead of choice: Mango Comapeno
Austin Haynes // Production & Packaging Lead
Austin knows canning lines like you know your dog. Powered by good coffee and bands that Andrew's never heard of, Austin makes sure there's enough mead in the can and bottle to keep you happy. He doesn't listen to complaints about over-full cans and will not discuss his recent Tic-Tac-Toe match with Elliot.
Austin's mead of choice: Hops
Patrick Cashin // DC/VA Sales Manager
Get ready, Northern Virginia! Patrick is switching over from the buyer side to convincing you mead can be drank outside the Renaissance Festival and has all kinds of ideas on how to upgrade your evening with mead. He's even got a SeaBee tattoo to show you he means business.
Patrick's mead of choice: Basil Lemongrass
Derek Brown // All Around Good Guy
Derek is why we actually have a working meadery. He keeps everything going and has done more to build out our new taproom than anyone else on the staff. We'll never know if he does that because he likes mead or if he just wants a place for his band to practice. Either way we like him and his common sense that keeps Andrew and James from doing dumb things.
Derek's mead of choice: Hive Mind (Graft Collaboration)
The Buzz about Charm City Meadworks
NPR: The Salt - This Modern Meadery is Making Honey Wine Hip - With Hops
Roll Call - Charm City Buzzes with New Brews
Baltimore City Paper - CCMW Launches Line of Canned Mead
The Guardian - The Foodie Traveller (Small feature)
The Beah Show - Road Trip to Charm City Meadworks (Video)
The Nobler Experiment - Is It Time to Pay Attention to Mead?
Drink Baltimore - Getting to Know Baltimore's First Meadery
Baltimore Magazine - Charm City Meadworks Opens
Baltimore Business Journal - How Charm City Meadworks Attract Customers
What Weekly - The New Mead Revolution, with Charm City Meadworks