The best of honey is in California! Because we said so.
Greek Honey is excellent. We also have some fabulous honey right here in NJ. We deal with Fruitwood orchards which has honey from all over although we only buy the NJ Honey. There are three types particular to NJ: Cranberry, from hives in the Cranberry Bogs; Blueberry from hives in the Blueberry patches; Pine Barren - from hives in the NJ Pine Barrens.
The best honey is what I get from a friend’s nearby hives and he gifts me a 2 pints
That’s what I was thinking!
As with anything, isn’t “best” highly subjective?
While on the topic of honey, I went to this honey shop in Asheville NC on @ChristinaM’s recommendation, and it was a revelation - they had tastings of a wide range of honey sourced from different flowers - very distinctive in flavor, color, intensity.
Did you taste sourwood honey when you were down this way? Sourwood is my favorite. I always replenish when I’m near Asheville.
No! I will look for it. I couldn’t carry much back because I didn’t check luggage, I bought some of the mini bottles as gifts.
There is a local farmer who rents some space to a beekeeper who has a few hives on the farm. A couple years ago somebody talked Ben (the farmer) into planting a field of sunflowers which they were going to sell or some such arrangement. Anyway, the sunflower guy never followed through & the sunflowers just stayed in the field. Well, the bees got into them & they made the best honey from that sunflower field. It was a late season honey & it was dark & rich & had a fabulous flavor.
Another reason to support your favourite (local) beekeepers. Beehives are so valuable, there’s been a series of theft (again) in California. Will the price go up?
Wow! That’s interesting. I remember when someone kept bees in the abandoned almond orchard behind my house. They haven’t been there for years, but fortunately there is still no shortage around my house.
Presunto, sorry to not reply sooner, I didn’t read this thread until just now; when I saw the topic however, I thought of wild thyme Greek honey immediately. We had it every morning with sheep’s milk yogurt for breakfast when we were in country for 3 weeks. It is indeed delicious and very prized. We didn’t go to Corfu or get as far north as Thessaloniki, but we did go to Meteora, which was quite amazing. Did you visit any of the monasteries built into the cliffs? I understand the nuns and women in the village send food stuffs and cooked foods on a wire pulley set up to feed the monks.
I will be happy to share pictures and recipes of our Greek cooking. Many of the recipes from the islands have strong Venetian influences. My SIL visited Ikaria on one of her recent trips to Greece. Ikaria is one of 5 “blue zones” recognized for the number of people who live healthily into their 100’s. Interesting. We recently made a recipe from an Ikarian cookbook using French lentils and fresh fennel, among other things. Absolutely delicious and very healthy. Let me know if you have any particular interests in Greek cooking. I will say the half moon cheese pastries from Crete are not to be missed…
That will be of great pleasure! A vote for that!
I have never been to Greece, but very interested in the cooking and the region, every information will be welcomed.
BTW, @ZivBnd is now having a trip, more here:
In Greece you will see chain restaurants in Athens & Thessalonika. There are McDonalds & whatnot around. Other than that mostly everything is locally owned. You might find in the city or on an island the same owner has two restaurants or maybe 3. There are several types of restaurants in Greece & they specialize. For ‘small plates’ you go to the Ouzeri. That’s where you find the eggplant salad, dolmades, tiromoslat, Skordala, grilled octopus & all that. Usually you pay by the plate & they come & count them when you’re done. There are also restaurants that specialize in ‘grilled food’. Here you will find lamb on the spit, Kokretsu, grilled steaks & such.Then there are more generic restaurants which offer a wide range of what we consider the traditional Greek foods like Moussaka, Pastitsio, Stifado, usually the catch of the day. I don’t know if it still is the custom, but when I lived in Greece, in these restaurants you went into the kitchen & all the dishes were displayed & you told your waiter, who accompanied you, what you wanted.
If you want spinach pie (Spanakopita) or cheese pie (Tyropita) you get them from the "fast food’ places in the morning. these places also usually have sausage rolls & mini pizzas too. You just get them on a napkin & wander off to wherever you’re getting your coffee & eat it on the way or when you get there.
Gyros & Souvlaki come from gyro stands & shops & they are considered street food so these places don’t usually have dining rooms. Maybe a couple tables on the sidewalk. When I was there, there was really no lettuce in Greece (too arid) so no lettuce in the Gyros. They all came with ‘chips’ inside. Usually they ask if you want chips in your Gyro.
There are lots of specialty restaurants also. The best pizza I ever ate was at a place called Medusa’s which had a charcoal beehive oven.
FYI - ‘Greek Breakfast’ is a cup of Greek Coffee & a cigarette; ‘English Breakfast’ is eggs & stuff.
Just a note on manners, you have to ask for the check. To bring it to you without your asking for it would be tantamount to asking you to leave which is VERY rude in Greece. Tipping is the same as here. Bear in mind… ‘lunch’ is between 2 & 4. Dinner is after 10. Well, after 9 anyway.
I would think you should easily be able to eat within your budget & get lots of good food…
I forgot to mention, I’ve been a few places & Greece is the best place I’ve ever been. One of the top ten stupidest things I’ve ever done in my life was come back. Of course, my ex wife hated it & would gladly tell you it’s the worst place she’s ever been.
Perhaps you could start a thread for all things Greek. It’s a popular cuisine and the country is well established as a travel destination (Joebabbitt’s ex wife is probably the rare few who hate Greek food and country).
If you don’t mind me asking, where in Greece were you living and visiting? It is a beautiful part of the world and I’ve always wanted to live on Crete. As much as I love it, it would be difficult to be an expat however…
Lol about the ex-wife! I will start a new thread on Greek cooking and drinking. Thanks for the suggestion.
I lived on an island called Skiathos. One of the three islands that make up the Lesser Sporades. Located in the Aegean between Greece & Turkey. It’s a small island with a winter population of about 3,500. I also spent a lot of time in Athens, which remains my favorite city in the world, & traveled around a bit as well.
Life as a ex-pat has it’s pluses & minuses. When I was in Greece in the 90’s Americans were not all tat popular due to our past support of the Junta. But there are lots of foreigners living in Greece.
I ad dreamed about Greek white stucco houses and had my exterior stuccoed by Germans its lath and everything but the downfall is that I am surrounded with oak trees and the pollen, leaves etc leaves nasty brown marks. Hard to find people to whitewash although it is simple. Trained a hispanic who did it and it took him no time at all. But, he lives over an hour away and no one in my County would do it.I understand the Greeks whitewash their house every year? I know just a matter of white cement ,water and some masonry lime in it and brush the stucco.
I decided yesterday to go by a sprayer and some outdoor chlorox to see if I can spray them myself just where I can reach.
Honey related: big hive in someone’s house. They’ve removed the whole massive thing now but who got to keep the honey?
Video clip from BBC: (it doesn’t let me paste the url so click here to go to BBC.
Photos on my laptop: