> Tasting notes from a sommelier September 26 2013

The owner of Franklin Wine & Spirits, Dave Clark, was kind enough to taste our current honey vintages and help us describe them. Honey, like grapes, is affected by the weather (rainfall, sunshine, earth), so we thought it would be fun to have a wine expert give us feedback.

Here's what he said:

The honeys were tasted from the lightest color to the darkest. Each was tasted alone, then with several food items. The honeys were tasted similarly to how I taste wines. First, the color was noted, then the aroma. Finally, the honeys were tasted and paired with foods. 

2013 Summer Honey: Light gold color. Sweet aroma of honeysuckle. Although it tastes sweet, the honey has a little tartness, with a hint of lemon. Pairs well with prosciutto and soft, mild cheddar. The bit of tartness makes it pair well with meats with some marbling, as the tartness and fat balance each other. (Beekeeper's note: the spicy, balanced sweetness also makes this vintage good with coffee, and with bleu cheese.)

2013 Spring Honey:  Medium amber color. Hint of orange blossom on the nose. Thicker consistency than the summer honey, but not quite as sweet. A nuttier flavor, with a hint of almond on the finish. Pairs well with hard, aged, dry cheddar, cashews and bread. Nuts and yeasty breads would pair very well with this honey. (Beekeeper's note: this vintage has a lingering, fruity tartness, making it good with tea, especially green tea, and with goat cheese.)

2012 Coastal Spring Honey:  Dark amber color, almost caramel. On the nose, the honey had notes of honeysuckle but with more floral fragrance than the summer vintage. The aroma made me think of a field of wild flowers near the edge of a tree line. Sweet up front but with a slightly bitter finish. (Brought back the taste of Tootsie Rolls when I was a kid.) Finishes with toasty notes. Went best with bread and nuts. This honey had a tendency to make cheese taste a little sour. Would be great to have a glass of Brut Champagne with this honey.  (Beekeeper's note: the earthy, smokey hints in this vintage make it a great ingredient in barbecue sauces, beans and even tomato bruschetta.)