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Every year when we started the olive harvest, we noticed that just when we arrived at our olive groves, in the Albarizas, there were some boxes that looked like beehives.
The presence of those honeycombs was something very curious that had always intrigued us and we never decided to ask whose it was.
In 2020 we decided to investigate and find out who those honeycombs belonged to. As in any small town, we all know each other and in less than 1 hour we knew who were the owners of those swarms, strategically located on a plateau of the Albarizas, no less than 500 meters from our olive groves.
The owners turned out to be from our town, Oliete and the neighboring town of Ariño. They are the Lecha Villanueva, a family of beekeepers who have more than 4 generations of tradition and experience in the field of beekeeping and own more than 1,500 hives in the whole area.
The Lecha Villanueva family, with origins in Oliete and Ariño - Teruel -, has been producing exclusive artisan honey since the 1930s, mainly from Thyme and Rosemary, as well as being one of the few beekeeping workshops in all of Aragon. His company is called Apícola Levi.
During the beginning of 2021 and after several approaches between Mis Raíces and the Lecha Villanueva family, we decided to launch our own Mis Raíces honey with them, specifically of the varieties of Rosemary and Thyme.
We are proud to be able to collaborate with a family business, as traditional and authentic as Apícola Levi, which shares the same origin as us. Our goal is to share and open to the world this exquisite gourmet honey that keeps stories and flavors forgotten in time.
The climatic and geographic conditions of our environment and region are conducive to the creation of Thyme and Rosemary honeys, offering an unrepeatable product that can only be found, in the same form and appearance, in our territory.
Thyme honey comes from limestone areas of the two peninsular plateaus and foothills of the mountain massifs. The time of harvest is during Spring - Summer.
Visually it is amber to light to amber in color - 50 to 84 mm Pfund Scale - . In general it has a slight reddish tone. The aroma is floral with a clear phenolic component, very intense and very persistent. In the mouth it has a sweet taste with clear acidic notes. It may have salty notes and the presence of malty retronasal aromatic notes. Crystallization is scarce.
Rosemary honey originates from limestone areas in the center and southeast of the peninsula. The best harvest time is early spring. Visually it is very clear - Maximum 35 mm Pfund scale. In nose we perceive a not very intense aroma of medium persistence, floral with camphor tones. The taste is sweet, with slight acidic notes. The crystallization is fine if it is rich in almond and coarse if it is rich in radish.
There is a belief that when a honey crystallizes, in other words - hardens and clumps - it means that it is something bad. And just no, it means just the opposite. Crystallization is a natural process, which occurs especially in mild and cool ambient temperatures such as in spring, autumn and winter, and just shows that it is a quality honey.
Health benefits and properties of honey
- Antibacterial potential
- Source of antioxidants
- Primary sweetener
- Important source of protein
- Moisturizing power
- Promotes digestion
- Treatment of wounds and burns
- Relieves cough and sore throat
- Anti-inflammatory action
How can we prevent honey crystallization?
It is as easy as heating the container in a bain-marie.
Honey is a unique and historical food. There is clear evidence of its consumption as early as the Mesolithic era. We are talking about more than 6,000 years ago, an authentic past. The Sumerians already began to know its medicinal properties, around 2,500 years B.C. There are many properties and health benefits.