Corbezzolo - Strawberry tree honey
Strawberry tree honey is an extremely fine delicacy that is produced almost exclusively in Sardinia. This is because only large, mature strawberry trees can house enough hives to produce this honey. This condition is mainly fulfilled on the island of Sardinia, although some other areas such as Tuscany can also produce a small amount, depending on the weather and the year.
Corbezollo is a dark coloured bitter honey that is only produced in small quantities and only when the optimal conditions exist. However, this does not happen every year, which makes Corbezzolo a true rarity.
The ingredient of this honey comes from the blossoms of the strawberry tree. This is particularly rich in polyphenols and flavonoids, which are responsible for the bitter taste of the honey.
Strawberry tree honey is produced in Sardinia and in particularly good years also in Tuscany. It has many positive properties due to its high antioxidant content. Versatile in its use, it has an anti-inflammatory effect, soothes cough complaints and helps with sore throats.
Recent studies have proven that Corbezzolo contains more antioxidants and polyphenols than even Manuka honey, a unique honey produced only in New Zealand and valued for its antibacterial, antiviral and anti-cancer properties.
Read our in-depth blog post on Corbezzolo honey to learn more about this exquisite honey: https://en.tresmundi.com/post/strawberry-tree-honey-one-of-the-best-kept-secrets-in-sardinia
Taste and pairing
Corbezzolo is characterised by aromas of bitter herbs, thyme and coffee and is a perfect complement to cheeses such as pecorino, ricotta or mascarpone. It is also used in some traditional desserts such as seadas, or simply for breakfast, along with yoghurt and muesli.
It can also be used as an appetiser with pane carasau and cured meats, or with artichokes, radicchio and other bitter vegetables.
The production of Corbezzolo honey is complicated: not only does it depend on the relatively small number of trees that are large enough, but the tree also begins to flower at the beginning of October, a time when the bees are preparing for winter.
The strawberry tree honey is obtained in Sardinia by extracting the honey from the combs (a method used in rational beekeeping with mobile hives). The flowering period of the strawberry tree is very late (October-November), which has significant disadvantages: the production period coincides with high humidity, so that the bees do not always manage to dry the honey optimally.
Accordingly, beekeepers have become familiar with the use of dehumidifiers that reduce the water content to values that are optimal for preserving this honey.
Corbezzolo is proven to be effective:
- anti-inflammatory and antiviral
- an amazing anti-asthmatic, even where other treatments have failed
- inhibits colon tumour cells (https://www.eurekalert.org/news-releases/634353)
- contributes to improved blood circulation
- a higher content of polyphenols and antioxidants than any other honey, even Manuka honey
Meet the producer - Azienda Apistica Reina
Azienda apistica Reina is a small family business in the municipality of Oliena in the Barbagia region of Sardinia, considered one of the five blue zones in the world.
Tiziana divides her time between her regular work, family and her passion - to produce the best honey in Sardinia! At least that's what I thought when I first tasted her honey.
"Our product is completely organic, we focus on quality." - she said to me - "il nostro prodotto e completamente biologico, noi puntiamo sopratutto sulla qualita."
I was immediately aware that this was another exceptional product from Sardinia. When my children were given the Millefiori di Gennargentu and the bitter Millefiori Amaro for the first time, they said to me, "Dad, this is the most delicious honey we've ever tasted" They've already eaten and tasted a lot of honey, so I knew at that moment, "This is the perfect honey for me!"
Depending on the weather, Reina produces not only the Millefiori and the Abbamelo, but also eucalyptus honey and the much appreciated and almost unique Corbezzollo and Asfodelo honey.
The small family business pays a lot of attention to nature and produces in harmony with it. So it happens that there are also years when Corbezzollo and Asfodelo are not produced. I appreciate this very much, as it is a clear sign of quality rather than quantity.
And that is exactly what distinguishes Reina and Tresmundi: Unique quality products from unique and special people.