I’m sweet on honey. Over the past few months, I’ve been collecting jars of honey habitually from visits to various towns in the northeast. As a result, I’ve come across some interesting flavors harvested by local bee farmers. In Phoenicia, New York, I picked up one spiced with chai. While in Martha’s Vineyard two weeks ago I discovered a nectar infused with cranberries from the local Cape Cod. What I find most intriguing is that these honeycombs really are the ultimate local food. Made by local bees with pollen from local flowers, these honeys are then blended with flavors representative of the region. To find honeys available near you, pay a visit to Local Harvest and see these interesting honeys to add to your pantry.
Avocado Honey from Long Beach, California
This cold packed honey has a very sweet, almost molasses taste to it. This unfiltered, raw honey comes from Honey Pacifica for $10 a jar. Not a bad price for this nutrient-packed sweetener. Use it to sweeten these no flour/no sugar/no oil oatmeal cookies.
Macadamia Nut Blossom from The Big Island, Hawaii
Macadamia nut orchards on the main island of Hawaii are responsible for the rich and nutty flavor of this honey. According to Royal Hawaiian Honey, both beekeepers and orchard owners benefit from the bee’s pollination work. Add this 100% raw honey ($15) to your collection, and drizzle it over a coconut panna cotta like this recipe from Deliciously Organic.
Bees Knees Spicy Honey from Hudson Valley, New York
One of my favorite kinds of honey is spiced honey ($13.99). The juxtaposition between sweet and hot is a perfect combination on so many foods, including pizza! You’ll find just chili peppers, not vinegar or chemicals in every hand-mixed bottle.
White Oak Smoked Honey from Portland, Oregon
Cold-smoked by Chef BJ Smith of Portland’s Smokehouse 21 restaurant, this honey ($15.95) has an interesting and complex flavor. Mix it with some sweet butter, and spread it on bacon and sweet potato biscuits.
Sourwood Honey from Blue Ridge Mountains of Northeast Georgia
Don’t let the name fool you. Sourwood Honey is light in flavor and color. Due to the small amount of supply, this one is rarely available outside of the Blue Ridge and Allegheny Mountains. Sourced and sold by Blue Ridge Honey Company, Sourwood Honey is delightful over fresh homemade ricotta or the Georgia staple, The Flying Biscuit southern grits.