'As Local as it Gets' Honey
I’ve started an intriguing journey across a landscape of honey. Until recently I was only aware of clover, manuka, and perhaps a one or two other types of honey. I now know that the variety is infinite. The differences between honeys are far greater than the differences within a type of wine, say, Sauvignon Blanc from different winemakers. This make sense; the taste of honey is totally determined by where bees forage. Honey from the Moutere Hills is very different to honey from Nelson. The Moutere Hills honey has a rich plum flavour. The Nelson Honey is a lighter; more like Lychees.
Why so? It’s because flavour is determined by the flowers that bees visit in their quest for nectar and pollen. Unless honey is ultra-filtered, each teaspoon contains hundreds of thousands of grains of pollen, and it’s predominantly pollen that imparts flavour. The main pollens in the sample of Moutere Hills honey I tried were Clover, Manuka, Willow, Kamahi and Dandelion. Clover, Manuka and Kamahi also feature strongly in the sample from Nelson city hives, but so did Lotus and Borage. The big difference was the Willow pollen in the Moutere Hills honey, so perhaps that’s what was giving it a stronger flavour, or maybe it’s was the dandelion. Whatever; it’s exciting to discover whole a new world of flavours and to speculate on the reasons why.
Nelson/Tasman is home to New Zealand’s, and possibly the world’s only apiarists producing a range of single source honeys. It’s the equivalent of single vineyard wine. Andrew and Wendy Lane are the dynamos behind this. Their hives are where you live. You’ve probably seen one of their signs; ‘Backyard Bees’
Eyebright has the full range of ‘local as it gets’ honeys. From Atawhai to Motueka and all points in between, as well as St. Arnaud.
Call in for a free tasting.