We’ve neglected updating the site for a while (okay, for over a year), but the bees have been busy, nonetheless.
Way back in February 2015, we attended the New Jersey Honey Show where our honey in the comb won a blue ribbon plus “best of division” for combs and spreads. We’ll be doing this kind of honey again in 2016.
Oliver with the award-winning honey and rosette
We also won second place in the novelty wax category–with a block of wax in the shape of Han Solo in carbonite. Unfortunately, no photos exist.
Believe it or not, Spring is here. Already our bees are bringing in bright yellow pollen along with darker yellow and light brown. Hard to know where it’s coming from, but in NJ the first blooming plants are skunk cabbage and spice bush followed closely by maple, hazel, and elms. The NJ beekeepers association has a handy pollen calendar here.
Many of our customers are looking for local, raw honey to help prevent seasonal allergies. According to healthline, medical studies are inconclusive, but if it works for you or your family, then it’s a pretty tasty remedy (though honey should never be given to infants or toddlers under the age of one).
Here’s hoping the snow ends and we can all enjoy a proper Spring–free of allergies!
We just got back from the 2014 NJ State Honey Show where the honey we extracted on June 9th from our Edgemont hives won 1st place in the “black box” category! At these types of shows, judges consider a wide range of criteria for most honey categories–some of which are only about packaging or ability to fill multiple bottles to the same level. The black box category is only about taste, aroma, and texture–what really matters to most people.
Given all the great beekeeping going on, I don’t know if we can say we have the best-tasting honey in New Jersey, but we know we have blue ribbon flavor!
For the first time, our bees brought in a dark fall honey. In the Montclair area, this will be almost all from Japanese Knotweed otherwise known as Japanese Bamboo. This invasive weed is fast growing and hard to remove. It tends to thrive around streams, highways, and railways. While it’s not great for gardeners–or native plants–it’s a big nectar producer and the bees love it.
Our new apiary near Porter Park must be close to a good source of Japanese Knotweed, because the bees went crazy for it this fall and made almost 60 pounds of this special honey. The honey is a beautiful dark amber with a slight buckwheat smell and taste–all characteristics of this varietal honey. It has a distinctive taste, and people say that dark honey has more antioxidants than light honey, so is even better for you.
The other thing to know about this honey is it crystallizes very easily. This is a natural process in all honey, and lets you know that it’s honey and not corn syrup or something else. If you want the honey to pour, then it’s simple to remove the crystals. We recommend that you heat a pan of water up to about 130 degrees, turn off the heat, loosen the lid of the jar, and put the bottle into the water–taking care not to splash water into the honey or immerse above the jar top. Let it sit as the water cools. You may need to do this a couple of times. (You can do this more quickly by heating the water above 130 degrees, but you may lose some aroma and taste.)
We’ve just got this into bottles, so if you’d like to try some of this honey, just let Oliver know when you email or talk to him.
Nice to meet you. We’re a very small, local honey producer in Montclair, NJ. Our honey is raw and delicious. A friend says it tastes like the air in springtime. Nice.
Browse through to find out more about our honey, our bees, and what we do.
Please note that we no longer accept posted comments on our website–we’ve left some nice ones from a couple of years ago, just for fun. But otherwise, too much spam! So email if you need to talk to us.