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HONEY SEARCH: Tastiest grocery store honey...

  • Moimoi May 29, 2008 05:37 AM

I unfortunately got a taste for an expensive honey a while back - a small bottle was about $13, from Kensington from Greece, Attiki Amber No. 1.

I don't know enough about honey to know if it was the ultimate, but I definitely know I can't go back to Billy Bee again. There are a lot of honey choices available at Kensington, but so many it's overwhelming to decide. While my Greek honey is/was yummy, I'd like to find a commercial brand that is much less expensive, comparable in flavour, but certainly not as refined as Billy Bee. I'm on a new breakfast kick - making greek yogurt, honey and walnuts. I haven't done it yet, but I want to be adequately prepared when I do. Also, while I don't want to make anyone implode by asking this, but do the honey connoisseurs out there really believe there is a big difference in brands/flavours? Thanks.

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  1. Mr. Millygirl is a big fan of Attiki honey. But he goes through it like crazy and I hate spending the money. It's pretty much the same price on the Danforth, sometimes even more. I've found a nice honey, can't recall the name, but I believe it's from Ontario. It's sold in a huge jar at Select Bakery for about $8. Very nice stuff.

    1. President's Choice Manuka Honey is fabulous and definitely not expensive (though I don't remember exactly how much it costs). It's an amber colour and has an almost caramelly quality. I'm not sure how it compares to your Greek Attiki honey, but it's got Billy Bee beat hands down.

      1 Reply
      1. re: torontofoodiegirl

        I'm also addicted to Attiki (I ditched clothes from my suitcase in order to bring 3 huge cans of it home from Greece when I had it the first time). I do like the Manuka honey, but while it is caramelly and tasty honey, it isn't quite the same... just missing a certain layer of taste I don't have the experience to pinpoint. You're right, it still definitely beats Billy Bee tho.

      2. I've gotten a better taste for honey after living in Kitchener for seven years. It's easy to get local honey at the Kitchener Farmer's Market and St. Jacob's Farmer's Market. There is REALLY a big difference in flavours depending on the flower honey you pick.
        I like buckwheat honey for a dark strong honey flavour and I like clover honey for a lighter honey taste. I also found blueberry honey once at St. Jacob's Farmer's Market and it was really good. Sweet. Apple blossom honey is also really sweet.
        I think you'll be able to taste the difference, so I suggest you take yourself to somewhere where you can sample lots of different honeys. As I keep mentioning, the farmer's markets in Kitchener and St. Jacob's would be GREAT for that :)
        Oh yah, the prices are also reasonable there... I think 250mL for about $4... 500mL for $7 or $8...

        oops, and sorry i have no grocery store recs!

        1. There's a guy in St Lawrence Market who sells honey. He's in the basement (near Moustachio's).
          His selection is amazing. His passion for honey is amazing.
          His quantity of samples he gives is amazing.
          He's the only honey vendor I'll visit. He has a honey that meets any need. Even has a jar for $50 which is possibly the best tasting honey i've ever had.

          5 Replies
          1. re: atomeyes

            He also has this beautiful French lavender honey - think it's about 13 or 16 dollars a bottle - the name escapes me....

            It is so intoxicating and quite elegant.

            I find the manuka honey from NZ abit to pungent for my liking although I know it esp for a breakfast of yogurt, walnuts & honey.

            Also - I have heard of a pine honey which I have not had the opportunity to try yet... I may also be a honey that goes well with your breakfast.

            (Also - you may want to consider some dried fruit with your yogurt - some apricots perhaps.)

            1. re: Apple

              There are lavender fields in Quebec, south shore, east of Rimouski, if memory serves...For sure they'll have a local honey crop if you're in the area, and ask about it.
              Pine honey is a Balkan specialty. The bees gather honeydew from aphids on the pine needles, as the trees have no flower with nectar. It has a resinous taste but you get to like it, just like retsina!

              1. re: jayt90

                I had pine honey on a Turkish dessert once and it was delicious. Unusual but not overpowering. It did have a faint piney taste, but it didn't feel like I was gnawing on bark. lol!

            2. re: atomeyes

              Sorry, I meant to say St. Lawrence - I always say Kensington instead. I've seen the guy in the basement - he seems kind of bummed out, but I hope it's not because he doesn't do good business... I've tried his samples, but it was so difficult to choose - again, as I said, "overwhelming" without any prior knowledge. Good advice though about the pine and lavender - gives me some ideas. I've also heard that Attiki has thyme in it, as well as a secret mix of flowers, etc... I guess this means I will have to go to Greece now. Rats!

              1. re: Moimoi

                actually, i would chalk his "bummed out-ness" to cultural differences. he's Russian, i believe. he's just not overly expressive.
                very friendly and passionate about his honey.

            3. I love Honey!

              Too bad I don't see specialty honey's often here in Brampton/Mississauga

              1. You can find ginseng honey at many asian groceries. Last year I brought home a bottle of yuzu honey from Japan... so, so awesome. Though I think these honeys are more honey + flavour, rather than honey made from the flowers of particular plants.

                1. No good supermarket brands have been mentioned, and nt much local honey, except St.Jacob's (thanks, sumashi)
                  I only know of two local producers, in a lot of stores: Munro Honey, west of London, Ont., and Burke's Honey, available in bulk (including buckwheat) at the Bulk Barn stores. Our local supermarkets hould get more Ontario honey on the shelves; we are a major producer of clover honey, anywhere, and the good stuff should be at hand, rather than blended down at Billy Bee (read the label).

                  The best clover honey I have ever tasted was a regular, yearly crop from Peace River, Alberta, sent to Billy Bee every summer. It was graded 'water white' two levels above standard white. I wish I could find it now, in small containers.