Honey-infused Bourbon Creates Buzz at Brown Palace Hotel

Ship Tavern aging honey-infused bourbon released this summer

The honeybees that live on the roof of the Brown Palace Hotel make honey for drinks and recipes

The honeybees that reside at The Brown Palace Hotel have been hard at work preparing the main ingredient for the newest addition to the Ship Tavern cocktail menu — honey-infused bourbon. Since July of 2011, the Brown Palace’s colony of bees has grown from 75,000 to over a quarter of a million, producing the honey that is served at the hotel’s swanky afternoon tea, and used in many of their other recipes. "It's great that we have our own hives, because we're getting a really unique product from a flavor standpoint," said the hotel’s executive chef William Dexter. Because the bees their gather nectar from a 3 to 4 mile radius, the honey they make is about as local as you can get.

In the past, the honey was also used to make a special edition beer with Wynkoop Brewing Company. Back in October 2011, the Rooftop Honey Saison was brewed in limited quantities. Now, the Ship Tavern is using its homemade honey to revamp its traditional cocktail selection. Breckenridge Distillery collaborated with Ship Tavern to make the bourbon.

Aside from this new addition, the vintage hotel pub offers a menu of nautical-themed signature cocktails that match the maritime décor, including the Pineapple Upside Down Cake made with Stoli Vanil, pineapple juice and grenadine, and the Tequila Topsail, which combines Tequila, Chambord, Triple Sec & Sour. You will also find a selection of microbrews on tap, as well as six different trappist beers.