GROTON, Vt. -- Once called the nectar of the gods, the oldest fermented beverage is seeing a renaissance.
Beekeepers and vintners are rediscovering mead, an alcoholic drink made of fermented honey and water. These days, fruits, spices and even carbonation are being added for distinct flavors that aren't a far cry from the beverage favored during the Middle Ages.
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American Mead Makers Association President Chris Webber estimates there are 200 to 250 commercial mead makers in the U.S., up from just 100 five years ago.
Some are beekeepers-turned-mead makers looking to find other ways to sell their honey. Others are craft beer brewers-turned-mead makers with some now dabbling in beekeeping to produce their own honey.
A Vermont meadery called Artesano opened in 2008 and says it sells out of 20,000 bottles a year.