Eat honey, my son, for it is good; honey from the comb is sweet to your taste. Ancient Proverb
Many enjoy honey simply because it tastes good.
Others know that honey, man’s oldest sweetener, is an effective calmer of coughs or ulcers when ingested with warm tea. Honey is also a natural antiseptic for wounds and, because it has the ability to attract water, it can be used as a face mask or mixed with olive oil to be used as a hair moisturizer.
Yet recent media stories have scared many people off from buying honey with reports that much of the honey sold in the United States is tainted with contaminants or watered down.
So where can one find healthy honey?
Some of the best honey in the world comes to the United States via locally owned, Ritrovo Italian Regional Foods, LLC. For 10 years husband and wife team, Ron Post and Ilyse Rathet have been honey devotees and they have helped bring the hand-crafted honey products of Dr. Paolo Pescia to the US market.
Pescia, a passionate second-generation honey maker, transports his apiaries (beehives) to seasonally-flowering zones and protected national parks located from Italy’s Tuscan coast to its hills. He uses this practice to produce monofloral (one flower) honeys of stunning quality and flavor. All production is done by hand, including the scraping of the honey from their combs. Contrary to the reports of adulteration in some imported honey, Pescia’s honeys, like many other limited-production honeys, are free from chemicals and contaminants. In fact, Pescia honeys have “proudly” passed several lab analyses for the Chinese-based contaminant choloramphenicol, which has never been discovered in honey “Made in Italy”.
Pescia Honeys can be purchased locally at Poggi Bonsi Cucina at 907 S. 152nd Street in Olde Burien.
Varieties of honey are as follows.
Acacia Honey by Dr. Pescia – From a national park in Northeast Tuscany, this golden, liquid honey is extremely floral, perfect for drizzling on pastries or Sunday morning French toast.
Blackberry Honey from Dr. Pescia – Available seasonally, this rare, lush honey produced from bees visiting ripe fall blackberries in the Tuscan countryside. Its deep flavor is perfect for fruit desserts, quick breads, and meats–including game meats.
Cardoon Flower Honey by Dr. Pescia – available seasonally.
Corbezzolo Honey by Dr. Pescia – available seasonally.
Chestnut Honey by Dr. Pescia – The bees are transported to chestnut woods in the hills near the Pescia farm for the production of a transparent, bronze-colored, pourable honey with a potent, molasses-like bouquet and flavor. Ideal as a condiment for cheese plates.
Ivy Flower Honey by Dr. Pescia – available seasonally.
Sulla Honey by Dr. Pescia – From the flowers of a wild local legume in the Tuscan Hills, this light and delicate honey has a velvety texture, making it a delicious addition to tea or coffee. Also use it in any sauce reduction.
Sunflower Honey by Dr. Pescia – available seasonally.
Wild Heather Honey by Dr. Pescia – From the expanses of heather facing the Mediterranean near the Pescia farm, this honey has a slightly crystalline structure and intense yet balanced suite of flavors. Excellent as a dessert topping, elegant over pancetta, and simply wonderful on ice cream.