Posted by: lizlitzow | November 15, 2011

The Honey Man

On a beautiful Sunday afternoon in autumn we visited Signor Biondi, a lovely local man who makes the most beautiful honey. It is pure with no additives. He proudly showed us his bee hives. When one our party expressed fear of the bees, he told us that if we let them get on with their honey making, they will leave us alone.

The Hives

Signor Biondi has won many awards for his honey and showed us an award he had won in 1986. He still has one of the bottles of honey from that year.

The National Award

The 1986 bottle of honey

Signor Biondi has his honey “farm” in Pascoli, a small town in the Garfagnana.  He makes two types of honey, a light coloured Acacia honey and a stronger and darker honey from the Chesnut flowers. I preferred the honey from the Acacia as it was more delicate in flavour.

A lot of the honey that is available on the supermarket shelves is diluted with water and often has added chemicals.  If you tip a bottle of honey on its side, and the bubble travels slowly, this shows that the honey is pure, if on the other hand, the bubble dashes along the bottle, then it is not.

Acacia Honey

Chestnut Honey

Bees wax - after the honey has been extracted

Signor Biondi filling up a jar


Responses

  1. I love this – particularly the award! I have however heard other honey producers who feed the bees sugar to keep up their productivity – can’t be good for the bees or make decent honey – good on him for sticking to the natural route!!

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    • Yes he is very passionate about his bees & the honey they produce – its all natural

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  2. They’ve recently proven scientifically in Italy that certain Italian honeys are effective in combatting chronic infection and bacteria. The acacia variety is one of them! Here’s the link to the Italian article if anyone’s interested:

    http://www.nationalgeographic.it/dal-giornale/2011/09/15/news/il_miele_che_uccide_i_batteri-515044/

    Thanks for this post.

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    • Yes…. Honey has been proved to be a natural antibiotic –

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  3. I had not heard about this person and it is great to have a genuine producer near us. As Charlotte pointed out, it is a great natural fighter of bacteria and germs and it has been used as such for centuries. It also contains 35% of protein, a good combination of aminoacids, minerals, vitamins B,C,D and E. The only problem is the high sugar content, which may affect people with diabetes and related ailments. Obviously, the best is natural honey such as this one.
    The Romans loved honey and used it in many dishes. The one that has survived is “ova mellita”, a sweet combination of eggs and honey cooked as an omelette, which is considered to be the originator of this dish.

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    • That’s very interesting information – when you get back, go pay him a visit

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  4. That’s a man with an enviable profession, working alongside nature. Great photos. I agree with the previous comments – honey being a wonderful natural antibiotic.

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    • He was a very gentle man who obviously likes what he does – very fortunate

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  5. Lovely article and photos! It was a great afternoon and Mr Biondi is very pleased to have visitors who are interested in honey and bees. He took us through the whole process (which might be a good blog subject!). I like the acacia one too …. It is so delicious! You can tell it was made by happy bees!

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    • Thank you -yes it was a great afternoon

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  6. I love honey alot. i got some jars from Lucca, alle castagne e acacia, so yummiiii…..

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    • It may have been from Signor Biondi

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    • Might be the same

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  7. What a fascinating post, Deb. I had no idea how to tell if honey is pure. Now I know. And, goodness, I love honey!
    Kathy

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  8. Oh, this is a great post. I’ve always wanted to visit a Honey-eria! 🙂 What would a 25 yr old jar of honey taste like? Moreover, maybe it’s turned to gold! 🙂

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    • He didn’t offer us a taste!!!

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  9. Yum! I am so hungry now.

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    • Lovely on toast anytime !!!

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  10. Lovely way to spend the afternoon and interesting to see the colour of the acacia.
    Does the flavour change at all over time? (thinking of the 1986 jar).

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    • I don’t know –

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  11. Wonderful tip on what to look for in natural honey — thanks, Debra! Now I’m wishing we had brought some honey home from our summer trip to Tuscany. All the more reason to return.

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    • Absolutely – this is Liz – I do write the occasional post

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