food + drink sarasota

The best honey in the world.

Ever since I made the switch from coffee to tea, I’ve been eating more honey than I ever have in my life. I’ve always loved the stuff—it’s especially delicious drizzled on chunks of fresh Parmesan cheese–and I know that it has health benefits, too. But I didn’t quite realize the huge differences between real-deal local honey and the kind you buy in the plastic bear at the grocery store. That is, until I got to talk with the awesome people at Negley & Son Honey for work.

Negley & Son is based in Arcadia—just up the road from Sarasota—and produces raw, unheated, unfiltered honey from their more than 1,000 beehives. It’s a full-scale commercial operation, but it’s incredibly responsible in terms of the production process (if you want to know why thats’s important, read this post on my friend Megan’s blog), and it truly is a family business: proprietor Mark Negley’s father and grandfather were both apiary inspectors, and Negley has been helping tend to beehives since he was a kid (he’s 24 now. Twenty-four. HelloIFeelInadequate.com). I got the chance to sit down with him last week for work, and I’ll share the piece I worked on when it’s published in our May issue.

But the honey. Oh, you guys, the honey. It’s delicious. I’ve gone through two bottles of the orange blossom varietal in about two-and-a-half weeks, thanks to my insane tea consumption, and it’s so different than the stuff in the plastic bear—the flavor is deeper and more complex (you can really taste the floral notes), and the texture’s different, too—less smooth, but in a good way. If you can get your hands on it, do. There’s no website just yet, but I have it on good authority that www.negleyhoney.com will be up and running very soon.

Do you love honey as much as I do? My other sweetener of choice is agave nectar—I’ve been working really hard to cut back on refined sugar and all the fake stuff.

Photo by Artisan Cheese Company


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9 Comments

  • Reply
    Alicia Jay
    April 2, 2013 at 1:19 pm

    I absolutely love honey and, like you, was shocked by how much variety and complexity it has once I branched out from the grocery store. When I studied abroad in Senegal, I visited a market in a town known for its honey. This stuff was completely raw, unfiltered (you would occasionally find a bee in the bottle, which was a reused water or soda bottle), and about as black as motor oil. A tiny teaspoon absolutely exploded with flavor. Now that I’m back in the US, I’ve enjoyed picking up honey at local markets whenever I’m visiting a new place. The geography changes a lot about it and it’s lovely to have an edible souvenir that I can stir into my tea while remembering a trip.

    • Reply
      Megan
      April 2, 2013 at 2:59 pm

      Alicia, yes–when I spoke to Negley & Son they jokingly said that no one has ever found a bee in the bottle, but that it wasn’t out of the realm of possibility. That made me like them even more. Your experience in Senegal sounds amazing! So glad you love local honey, too.

  • Reply
    eileen ragan | leaner by the lake
    April 2, 2013 at 1:31 pm

    HUGE honey fan here as well. I buy from the farm across the street from my family’s lake house on Crystal Lake in Michigan. Similarly, it’s a family run business with orchards, hives, and the like. They’ve also got AMAZING jams and pickled vegetables. Their salsas are a staple in our home (umm, Cherry Hot Salsa w/pineapple chunks, yes please).

    Thanks so much for linking up with your friend’s blog. I was totally fascinated by her post on the bee documentary and will be looking forward to watching that one.

    In terms of sweeteners, I keep honey, agave nectar, and liquid stevia in the house and alternate between the three based on what I’m cooking/stirring up. I’m a huge sucker for agave nectar in tequila, though I promise I use it in more healthy dishes as well 🙂

    Great post, Megan!

    http://www.leanerbythelake.com

    • Reply
      Megan
      April 2, 2013 at 3:04 pm

      Thanks, E.! Crystal Lake sounds like such a special place. And so glad you liked Megan’s post on the bee documentary. I’ll have to tell her. I’ve never tried liquid stevia–good stuff? And yum…agave nectar in tequila…;)

  • Reply
    Kenley Leigh / Green Door Hospitality
    April 2, 2013 at 2:51 pm

    Huge fan of honey!! We get it local Texas honey which is good BUT I’m actually a bigger fan of honey from the Midwest — more varieties based on flowers that the bees pollinate. And THANK YOU for linking to your friend’s post. My husband and I love documentaries and this one is definitely going in our Netflix que.
    Kenley

    • Reply
      Megan
      April 2, 2013 at 3:05 pm

      Hi Kenley! Yeah, I’m going to have to watch the bee documentary, too–I haven’t yet, but Megan’s post really made me want to. So glad you are a big honey fan, too! Yay. 🙂

  • Reply
    Richelle Lynn Garn
    April 2, 2013 at 5:24 pm

    I love love love natural honey. I stopped using sugar as a sweetener. I started using honey a little while ago. It is so pricy. I go through the stuff like water. It is getting so expensive. I will need a huge tub of it to make it worth my while.

    Love, Lynn from Lynn+Lou

    • Reply
      Megan
      April 2, 2013 at 5:49 pm

      I’m so with you–I go through it like water, too, and it is pricey, but I feel like it’s worth the investment (plus it’s legitimately helping me with my allergies). I’m trying to rethink the way I prepare/spend money on food, so at least for now I can justify the cost. 🙂 xoxo

  • Reply
    megan
    May 30, 2013 at 12:22 am

    umm, so i was googling negley and this came up. thank you so so so much for linking to me! how wonderful! come visit me for your next fix. 🙂

  • Leave a Reply

    food + drink sarasota

    The best honey in the world.

    Ever since I made the switch from coffee to tea, I’ve been eating more honey than I ever have in my life. I’ve always loved the stuff—it’s especially delicious drizzled on chunks of fresh Parmesan cheese–and I know that it has health benefits, too. But I didn’t quite realize the huge differences between real-deal local honey and the kind you buy in the plastic bear at the grocery store. That is, until I got to talk with the awesome people at Negley & Son Honey for work.

    Negley & Son is based in Arcadia—just up the road from Sarasota—and produces raw, unheated, unfiltered honey from their more than 1,000 beehives. It’s a full-scale commercial operation, but it’s incredibly responsible in terms of the production process (if you want to know why thats’s important, read this post on my friend Megan’s blog), and it truly is a family business: proprietor Mark Negley’s father and grandfather were both apiary inspectors, and Negley has been helping tend to beehives since he was a kid (he’s 24 now. Twenty-four. HelloIFeelInadequate.com). I got the chance to sit down with him last week for work, and I’ll share the piece I worked on when it’s published in our May issue.

    But the honey. Oh, you guys, the honey. It’s delicious. I’ve gone through two bottles of the orange blossom varietal in about two-and-a-half weeks, thanks to my insane tea consumption, and it’s so different than the stuff in the plastic bear—the flavor is deeper and more complex (you can really taste the floral notes), and the texture’s different, too—less smooth, but in a good way. If you can get your hands on it, do. There’s no website just yet, but I have it on good authority that www.negleyhoney.com will be up and running very soon.

    Do you love honey as much as I do? My other sweetener of choice is agave nectar—I’ve been working really hard to cut back on refined sugar and all the fake stuff.

    Photo by Artisan Cheese Company


    { Follow Pink O’Clock on facebook or twitter.

    Pink O’Clock is licensed under a creative commons license. }

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