Our new Orange Blossom varietal honey may seem simple, but producing a honey like this one is much more complex than the label makes it seem. Because, unlike most of our local varietals, it’s not just a matter of moving the hives and letting bees go to work.
Our Orange Blossom honey is only possible because our bees visited orange blossoms – and not much else. In practice, that’s pretty tough to pull off. Imagine: how would you get 50,000 bees to visit only one kind of plant? You can’t tell them what to do. After all, you’re not their boss – the queen is. This is why most mass-produced honeys are just labeled “honey,” without even bothering to tell you what they’re made from. Bees tend to go wherever they want, and beekeepers can usually only figure out what’s in their honey by testing it after the fact.
The secret to making Orange Blossom honey? Bee psychology.
While bees can travel up to six miles in search of pollen, they prefer to keep their trips short and sweet (sorry, had to) by visiting nearby flowers. Beekeepers can take advantage of this instinct by placing hives in a richly blooming orchard or field of crops. The honeys that result will have a unique flavor profile, one that might only be possible to produce a few days a year.
That makes single varietal (also known as monofloral) honeys like Orange Blossom a rare treat. This year, we were fortunate enough to be able to work with several American beekeepers whose hives spent bloom time in the orange groves of Florida and California. Surrounded by thousands of orange trees, their bees made honey predominantly with orange blossom nectar.
Why does all this matter? Because you can taste it! Orange blossom honey is one of the few varietals that a honey novice could recognize in a blind taste test. It tastes like oranges – big surprise, no doubt. The Local Hive™ Orange Blossom varietal in particular has a strong floral taste (as opposed to grassy or molasses-like flavor you might find in other honeys) with a bright hint of citrus. It’s excellent at breakfast: on pancakes, with warm biscuits or in tea.
Each of our raw & unfiltered local honeys is made from a mixture of floral sources: clover, berries and whatever happens to be growing near where the beekeepers place their hives. The result is a local honey that gives you a unique flavor profile that can’t be made anywhere else. That goes double for our Orange Blossom varietal. We’re extra proud to be able to bottle this rare & special, raw & unfiltered honey made right here by American beekeepers.