10 Speed Mead had to go. I'm sad to see it leave, because I rather liked it, and it was the standard-bearer of the company as I built my facility over the past few years. Two things happened that strongly encouraged a company name change.
The first was legal - another Oregon company was using "10 Speed" in the beverage industry. Oops, that'll teach me to not check the federal trademark database!
The second reason, however, is the artistic driver. I started fermenting just about anything with a sugar in it in 2006, and clocked in 114 distinct batches in seven years. I learned that many fruit ferment into some excellent wines.
My original focus was meads - the distinguisher there is that mead is made with honey as the primary fermentable sugar. However, I make rather long-aged meads, taking 8 to 12 months; this is a long lead-time to get a company up and running.
In the summer of 2013 at a little party in the Nevada desert, I brought 4 or 5 kegs of some of these fruit wines "just for fun": ginger lemon, habanaro lemon, grapefruit, and blue berry-pomegranate. Their immense popularity spurred me into thinking I needed to produce these non-honey wines as well.
And so, "10 Speed Mead" wouldn't fit for this class of beverages. Which brings us to: Hi-Wheel Wine & Mead Co.!