No trip to Savannah, Georgia would be complete without a visit to Savannah Bee Company. The Savannah Bee Company offers complimentary honey tasting at each location and some locations offer mead tasting. The knowledgeable staff can tell you all about bees, how honey is created, and the many flavors of mead.
After doing a bit of research on honeybees, I’m fascinated by the hive life. As the world’s most important pollinators, honeybees have a very important job. There are three kinds of bees in each hive: the queen, the worker, and the drone.
Worker bees are female and perform all the work in the hive. Drone bees are male and do not have stingers nor do they gather pollen. Their primary role is to mate with the queen, upon which, if successful, they die. Worker bees select the queen bee during the larval stage which is fed a diet of royal jelly in order to become sexually mature. There is usually only one queen in a hive.
Some hives have as many as 50,000 to 80,000 bees in residence, with 556 worker bees needed to create one pound of honey.
If you visit the Wilmington Island location just outside Savannah, you can take a tour of the bee garden! You’ll get to meet the ladies as they float around collecting pollen and create the delicious honey.
As part of the Bee Garden tour, you can visit the Bee Therapy Hut. A bench sits over three hives which allows the bee’s buzzing and vibrations to fill the hut. And it smells like honey inside.
Fun Facts About Honey
- applied topically, honey can be used to treat wounds, it helps prevent infection
- the flavinoids found in honey work as antioxidants, which rids the body of free radicals and detoxifies the body, in turn boosting the immune system
- honey may aid in weight loss if eaten daily
- full of healthy carbohydrates, honey can improve your athletic abilities
- honey helps stave off hangovers – a 2009 study found that honey accelerated the metabolism of alcohol in the bloodstream by almost 50% and reduced the duration of intoxication by 30%
- because of its healing properties and high viscosity, honey can ease acid reflux by coating the esophagus and helping to heal prior damage
- honey has been shown to decrease BMI, which leads to lower LDL (bad) cholesterol
After absorbing all this knowledge, you’ll definitely want to taste some of the honey produced by these delightful little creatures. Depending on the Savannah Bee Company location you visit, you’ll get to taste traditional honey, whipped honey, honeycomb, and mead.
A Bit About Mead
Mead, or honey wine, is arguably the oldest alcoholic beverage known to man. It is traditionally created by fermenting honey with water and yeast. Like traditional wine, mead can still be or sparkling and range from sweet to semi-sweet to dry.
Mead brewed with spices or herbs is called metheglin and mead that contains fruit is called melomel.
As a veteran of wine tastings, I jumped at the chance to participate in a mead tasting at Savannah Bee Company. The first sip was not at all what I was expecting. I assumed mead would be thick and syrupy like honey, but it was light and crisp and similar to traditional wine.
For more tips about Savannah, read Savannah Riverboat Cruise.