Island honey from Estonia

My friend Liz, an avid cyclist,  heads off every summer with her bike on a long trip, retuning with tales of adventures; strange encounters cycling solo through Europe. This autumn she returned with two pots of honey from her travels. I know how lightweight she packs on these trips, so knowing that she pedalled over hills and mountains  with two glass vessels filled with honey (one light, one dark) was...

The Joy of Bees: A Gastronomic Honey Tasting

As a honey lover when I heard that an immersive experiential art installation centred around bees and gastronomic honey tasting was coming to London I could not contain my excitement. The Joy of Bees curated by Bompas & Parr  for Relais & Châteaux , an international hotel group (that has a  commitment to bees and sustainability) arrived in London in October (2016) and I was delighted to attend the preview night (and to experience the...

Top Tips when planting for Bees

As an urban beekeeper in training I am increasingly interested in planting flowers that provide nectar for bees and other pollinators. Kate Cox at Border Designs based in Colchester, Essex, specialises in planting plans and has been providing lots of advice on how to create a bee friendly garden. There are many rewards of planting for bees and pollinators and you can do so in any environment, whether a small...

London Honey in Urban Food Awards

I want to recommend three London honey producers for you to try, all have been shortlisted for the Urban Food Awards.  The Urban Food Awards are delivered in partnership with Borough Market and London Food Link,  and it celebrates London’s fantastic small food businesses, products and people. Bee Naturals, Hive & Keeper and Apicultural are all members of the London Beekeepers’ Association (LBKA). Having joined the LBKA earlier in the year I have met many bee...

Forest Honey from Zambia

If you are looking for a delicious, rich and powerful raw honey then I urge you to try Forest Honey from Tropical Forest. This honey comes from Zambia, certified organic, raw and fair trade. Tastes good, feels great and helps others. What’s not to love? Zambian forest honey comes from wild bees foraging deep in the remote, untamed Miombo forests, home to one of the highest densities of wild bee colonies in the...

Honey from Wales

My sister’s mother-in law E, is a  retired midwife from Wales, she’s full of energy (as you would expect from someone who has helped to deliver thousands of babies). When I met her in London recently, as we were saying goodbye she slipped a small bag into my hand (with a twinkle in her eyes). No words were needed, I knew immediately that she was passing over a jar of...

6 Reasons to Buy Local Honey

Towns and cities are great places for  bees, and city honey can be of sensational quality (which may surprise those that associate honey with the countryside and the soft hum of summer, though there is that too).  I have generally found London honey to be complex and interesting to taste. The city contains a diversity of flowers and blossoming trees (by way of parks and urban gardens) which offers bees...

San Francisco Bay Honey 

My friend S, who I’ve known nearly 20 years since university, turned up at my house last week with a gift. A pot of  local honey, all the way from San Francisco, California. She had just returned from a trip and I was profoundly touched that she had (even for a moment)  been thinking of me and my obsession with honey. One of the most wonderful things about my adventures...

Sidr Honey From Yemen 

The quality of Yemen honey is known across the Arab world so it was with great excitement that I got to  finally try the much lauded and highly prized Sidr Honey from the Wadi Do’an (Do’an Valley), where beekeeping has been practiced for thousands of years. Sidr honey has a charming brown reddish colour, with a thick viscosity due to its moisture levels (similar to some heather honeys I’ve tried)....

Honey from the Himalayas

I’m currently eating Himalayan Highland honey from  Ogilvy’s. Raw, cold pressed and organic certified, it comes all the way from the rainforests of Himalayan mountains in the Kashmir valleys. This honey has an intense, rich and bold taste, it is not a honey to scoop from the jar, this one needs a partner to temper its personality. I went for yoghurt and fruit. This Himalayan Highland honey is a great...

British Heather Honey from Yorkshire

I’ve finally got round to tasting Heather honey, which is synonymous with Scotland. However the one I’ve been eating is a Great Taste award winner from hives located in North Yorkshire, County Durham and Northumberland and produced by The Honey B Company.  One of the first things I noticed about this honey was its consistency, it is gel like, thick and has air bubbles. This is partly a characteristic of...

Honey from Mile End Cemetery

I was delighted to be introduced to James Gotts, one of Tower Hamlets Cemetery Park (THCP) Beekeepers (there are four of them).  The Tower Hamlet’s Cemetery opened in 1841 and closed for burials in 1966, it is one of the Magnificent Seven Victorian cemeteries of London and it is now a designated park. As cemeteries go, it was very popular with people from the East End (a majority of the burials...

Talking Health and Honey with Bee Mercy

In my search for pure raw honey I came across Bee Mercy (a company selling an impressive range of raw honeys, ethically harvested and free from antibiotics and pesticides). As well as selling online they also sell honey at a market on North Cross Road in South London (on Saturdays). Not one to miss an opportunity to taste honey I jumped on a bus and headed over to meet them at...