Greek honey, also known as the ‘Nectar of the Gods’, is considered by many to be some of the finest honey in the world. Apiculture, the art of beekeeping in order to produce honey, dates back around three thousand years. Apiculture arrived in Greece from Ancient Egypt and has progressed over the centuries from raising bees in hollow trees, to woven baskets, to clay hives, and last to the wooden boxes we use today. In Greece, the art of apiculture is passed down from generation to generation. Those who practice apiculture move their hives to various regions across the country looking for flora that will produce the purest of flavors.
The Grecian summer sun, the distinctive Greek landscapes, and the rich diversity of Greek flora offers unique flavors, aromas, colors and tastes to the honey. Greece offers 7,500 different flora species and 850 of them are exclusive to the country. The basic types of Greek honey are thyme, pine, blossom, heather, chestnut, and fir. Crete and Kythera are known for the their thyme honey, while Vytina in the Peloponnese highlands is known for its fir honey, and Epirus of northwestern Greece is home to the bittersweet chestnut honey.
The use of honey as a sweetener and as a medicinal therapy has been around since ancient times. Greek honey is nutritional, filled with vitamins, and antioxidants. It contains anti-fungal and anti-bacterial properties. It still serves many medicinal uses today as it did centuries ago.
Aside from its health benefits, honey is an essential ingredient in Greek cuisine. Drizzled over yogurt and loukoumades, baked into Karidopita and Baklava, or poured in a warm cup of tea or milk; honey offers a sweetness and aroma to a variety of Greek dishes, desserts and beverages.
At Nerai, we use Orino Greek Honey with wild herbs and thyme, in a variety of our dishes, desserts and cocktails. Enjoy our light and refreshing Greek yogurt drizzled with honey and candied pecans at lunch, our Cretan Spiced Scallops with pork belly, rainbow cauliflower and sunchoke puree, garnished with ouzo honey at dinner, or sip on our Thymari cocktail, a blend of Sazerac Rye, thyme, honey, and nutmeg at the bar.
Indulge in this ‘Nectar of the Gods’ and experience the Greek cuisine and hospitality Nerai is pleased to offer.