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Apr 22, 2007 02:42 PM

Honey: Marsh Flower and other rare varieties

The past year or so I've been sampling every local honey I can get my hands on. My latest discovery: marsh flower honey. It's very dark, floral, rich, and winey. I don't always love really floral honeys, but I make an exception for this one.

I find myself really leaning towards the dark honeys lately. The best I had, besides the marsh flower, very nearly resembled molasses or cane syrup in flavor. Unfortunately, the beekeeper didn't label what type of honey it was. Any ideas? I was thinking maybe buckwheat, but I always hear people say buckwheat honey is very strong tasting. This honey was rich and complex, but I wouldn't say it was strong.

So, other honey-lovers, what's your current favorite?

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  1. There's a guy at the Farmer's Market in Union Square in NYC who sells a variety of honey. My favorite one that I've ever gotten from him is a bamboo honey--very unusual. I don't know how where it comes from, but it is delicious in tea or drizzled over ricotta.

    1. The lighter the honey, the sweeter the honey. Dark means there's other stuff floating around in there (hopefully making the honey taste good.) My all time favorite is avocado honey from Robert is Here near Everglades National Park in Florida. I imagine they have a website.

      5 Replies
      1. re: Steve

        I don't think that is right. It depends on the blossoms that the honey comes from. There isn't 'stuff' floating in dark honey.

        Anyway, my favorite is pumpkin blossom honey. I can eat it straight from the spoon. Really a unique taste.

        1. re: rworange

          True dat rworange. The healthiest honey I'm looking for is by bees feeding from a marsh flower. Can't think of the name of the common flower. It ends in "......strape". Do you know what the flower is? Thx

          1. re: golden77

            That is not ringing any bells for me. What part of the country? Which country?

            Here's some pretty rare and delicious honey I tried this year.

            Orchid honey, stingless bees and balche … it will give you a buzz

            1. re: golden77

              Could it be purple loose"strife" honey? Purple loosestrife is a beautiful and unfortunately invasive wetland plant in North America. However, bees make delicious honey from it. It has a very slight green tinge to it, but is very tasty. That is one good use for the noxious weed.

              1. re: earthygoat

                I think that's it earthygoat! I'm in NH/Mass area. The info about the honey being one of the healthiest came from a very good source. Someone once associated with President Kennedy's Dr. Brutsch, who was the first and only one to have documentation for the cancer fighting Essiac Tea formula. Thx so much! Joe

        2. When I lived in Maryland, I was able to get tulip poplar honey, another one of those dark, rich, floral honeys. My current fave is boneset.

          I used to have a honey cellar. Every time I travelled anywhere in the world, I would by local honey to add to the collection.

          If you are interested in amazing honeys, you need to check out these people.

          1. I was given a can of Tasmanian Leatherwood Honey last year, which I am sloooowly savoring. It's rather light.

            The deeper, darker honey I love is blackberry that I buy from Hector Alvarez at the Sonoma Farmers' Market

            1 Reply
            1. re: Junie D

              I agree that Tasmanian Leatherwood Honey is incredible. I ordered a jar from Kalystan's after reading the Gourmet article, and have trying to use it every chance I get because the flavor is so unique and wonderful. It made a fantastic meal out of a whole chicken rubbed with Chinese 5 spice seasoning and basted with the honey while roasting.

            2. I know it's not rare, but I absolutely LOVE Greek thyme honey - incredibly thick and intense flavor. A large tin of Orino honey from a local Greek market has lasted me quite some time. I also got a small jar of lehua honey from Hawaii when I ordered some coffee beans from Maui Coffee Co. - much more delicate in taste than orange blossom or clover honey.