On Saturday, August 18, the brothers Blankenship (Mathew and Phillip) helped extract honey from hive number 4. This hive clearly was the most productive this year. We removed 4 honey supers with mostly full frames. Looks like the total honey harvest will be about 15 gallons from this hive.
Mat and Phil did an outstanding job removing honey. They were real pros, gathering honey from the frames. It was good to see such brotherly teamwork. We knocked off 2 supers in no time at all.
We did of course celebrate the day with a nice meal in the garden. There were a number of nice teas:
- Special Reserve Puerh, an aged tea from the Yunnan province in China.
- Bai Ji Guan Oolong
- Buddah Hand Oolong
- Winter Harvest Pheonix Oolong
We served the teas in authetic Yixing pottery. A nice touch. I purchase many of my teas from the Imperial Tea Court, located in the Ferry Building in San Francisco. Roy Fong is the owner and I highly recommend his book “The Great Teas of China”
For the meal itself, we went somewhat simple – fresh baked bread, flax seed crackers, blackforest ham, smoked turkey, and roast beef. But we did present some respectable cheeses:
*) Beehive – Barely Buzzed Cheddar
The Beehive Cheese Company is located near Ogden, Utah. This cheddar is rubbed with ground coffee.
*) Unikass – Leyden
Leyden is a classic Dutch cheese which is aged over three months. It’s a spicy gouda-type cheese flavored with caraway seeds.
*) Kerrygold – Irish Killaree
Kerrygold is located in County Cork, Ireland. This cheese is a white cheddar.
*) Afinage – Herve Mons Meule de Savoie
As the name implies, this cheese is from Savoie, France. This is a gruyere style that is made from raw cow’s milk.
*) Afinage – Pave du Nord Herve Mons
Pave du Nord is named after the pavement stones it resembles and it is almost as durable and difficult to cut. The rough like exterior hides a bright orange interior the color of a burning sunset. This cheese is hard, dry, and flaky until you get it in your mouth, where the texture eases into a creamy, salty, pleasantly pungent flavor with an earthy undertone. The flavor seems muted at first, but as it melts on your tongue, the deeply savory and nutty notes come through.