Nothing beats the sweet, complex, deliciousness of local raw honey. However, the concept of what is raw or not is often a point of misunderstanding. Check out the three pics below and decide which one is raw:
The correct answer: all of the above. Why? Well raw honey is honey that has not been heated in access of 125F or strained with a fine micron filter. There are several brands that say "creamed" honey in picture #2 is the only form of raw honey. It is true that creamed honey is raw, but its not the only form of honey that is raw. People cream honey and force the honey to solidify into a smooth creamy texture because it tastes great and prevents the honey from naturally granulating. Natural granulate tends to be less creamy, more rock solid and less appealing to the eye.
All our honey at the East Hill Honey Co is raw. We use basic course filters (cheese cloth) to get the bee legs, wax chunks and such out of the honey but let the pollen spores pass through. We warm the honey just enough to allow it to flow into bottles (~100-110F) - but this means that some of our honey varieties will granulate in time because the honey is raw. No sweat - just place it in a warm water bath for awhile and let it degranulate.
The third picture of honey comb is also raw. It is literally cut right off the hive. We do inspect for stray bees, but don't be suprised if you find one ;-) This is the best way to eat honey in my opnion - just as is. You can eat the wax, honey and pollen all in one bite. When I am working the bee yard, I often scrape off a big chunk of comb honey and chew on it as I do my inspections - one of the perks of being a beekeeper!
So there you have it - raw honey in all its forms.
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