If I said that the scent of this honey reminds me of furniture polish, then I hope you’ll take it more as a compliment to my (beeswax-based) furniture polish than as a criticism of the foodstuff. The aroma is spicy and complicated. Knowing what the label says, I could believe I can scent coriander in there – the musk of the seeds and the paraffin kick of the leaves. I could believe there were lots of things in there, but you would never suspect it was honey.
So the sweetness is a surprise; furniture polish never tasted like this. But the relative simplicity of the flavour is also a disappointment after those complex and competing wafts from the jar. Only on the aftertaste – the tastes that linger around the tastebuds at the back of your mouth as you swallow – do you start to get more interesting flavours. The lanolin that is usually present only in the scent of a honey now asserts itself, with a smoky finish.
I think this honey should be used for something special. Maybe it would go with tofu and ginger, maintaining the Asian theme of the flowers from which it was harvested. Or maybe it would bring up the sheen on the mahogany gate-legged table in our sitting room?
More adventures in honey can be found in my book, Travels in Blood and Honey; becoming a beekeeper in Kosovo, published by Signal Books (2011) and available through bookshops and on Amazon.