We are proud to offer a line of local specialty honey from Z Specialty Foods located in Woodland, CA. We also seasonally carry a local honey from Del Rio Botanical.
Honey is one of the original processed foods. Bees eat nector and pollen and process it into honey which beekeepers remove in trade for bee boxes and drawn out wax cells. Bees are saved from the work of cleaning out wood cavities in old trees, and house eaves and dedicate their 45 day lives to collecting nector and pollen.
The nector and pollen from the spring flush of flowers is very light in color and weight. It is the same fruit tree pollen that causes all kinds of allergic reactions in people and floats easily in the air. Bees are able to carry more as the volume to weight ration is high. Later in the season the best pollen sorces have heavier, darker pollen. Squash flowers, cucumbers, sunflowers, safflower and corn all have sticky, heavy, dark yellow or organge pollen. The bees can't collect as much per flight and the resulting honey flow is less. The honey becomes progressivly darker as the season continues due to the pollen and nector color. The flavor also intensifies as the darker pollen, and hotter ambient temperature increase.
Early spring honey is light and delicate. We have a limited supply in from the hives located at Del Rio Botanical. The bees primarily work organnically grown flowers but there is no guarantee that they do not venture into other non-organic fields. As a result it is honey is marketed as made from organically grown flowers not organic honey. It is as "organic" as is possible. We also have some cut comb available. This is honey in the wax comb, sealed by the bees, cut into 1 pound chunks and topped with extra liquid honey. It is a delicacy not to be missed. As a side note-Comb honey was the original chewing gum-chew all of the honey out of the wax and then when the flavor is gone, spit out the wax!
Pollination and honey production are tied together and sudden bee death has hit most bee populations. Del Rio Botanical is fortunate to have a myriad of flowers for bees to visit 365 days a year. The bees are not trucked about to a dine on a single type of flower. The result has been a consistantly heatlhy group of hives with excellent honey quality. There has been no need for sugar syrup or other supplemental foods.
Del Rio Botanical honey is available in generous gallon jugs and is guaranteed not to be cut or mixed with sugar water or corn syrup.