Friuli Venezia Giulia Honey

Friuli-Venezia Giulia – ‘Il miele del Friuli Venezia-Giulia’

This north eastern region borders Austria to the north and Slovenia to the east. It is made up of a historical region, Fuiuli and a geographical region, Venezia Giulia (Julian Marsh in English). Although geographically small, it has a strong economic base both agriculturally and industrially and its location makes it a natural connection between Italy and Central and Eastern European countries (see Friuli Venezia Giulia Tourism).

Carso/Karst; Karst is a region in Slovenia partially extending into Italy where it is called Carso, a wildflower and caving paradise encompassing five nature reserves and one marine reserve. It is the only part of the Istrian Peninsula still belonging to Italy. It is near the capital city of Trieste, on the most south east point of the Friuli Venezi Giulia region, bordering Slovenia and lies between the Isonzo River and the city of Trieste. Carso’s terrain gives rise to its name meaning ‘land of rock’ thought to be of Celtic origin. The land is layered with limestone, calcareous and porous rocky soil interspersed by subterranean watercourses and caves.

Carso (and Friuli) honey may contain pollen and associated nectar from some or all of the following plants, many commonly found in the Mediterranian area: Buckthorn – Rhamnaceae, Flowering Ash – Fraxinus ornus, Smoke Tree – Cotinus coggygria, Cabbage – Brassica f., Apiaceae – Umbelliferae, Willow – Salix, Cherry – Prunus mahaleb, Bird’s-foot Trefoil – Lotus corniculatus, Asparagus – Asparagus acutifolius, Tree-of-Heaven – Ailanthus. Also ornamental plants such as: Creepers – Parthenocissus, Honey Locust – Gleditsia, Horse Chestnut -Aesculus

Types of Honey

  • Acacia Honey Carso Certified Traditional Food of Italy – ‘Miele di Acacia del Carso’ (Robinia pseudoacacia L. – greater than 15%)
  • Honeydew Forest Carso Certified Traditional Food of Italy – ‘Miele di melata di bosco del Carso’ (From Linden – Tila ssp., Sumac – Cotinu soggygria, Oak – Quercus ssp., Maple – Acer ssp.) (Visual & Tasting Notes: Very dark, dark amber to black with a greenish cast. Taste of medium intensity with hints of caramel, dried fruit or malt and yeast)
  • Friulian Chestnut Certified Traditional Food of Italy – ‘Miele friulano di Castagno’ (Castanea sativa Mill and Tilia) (Tasting notes: May not always be monofloral Chestnut, Linden may blossom at the same time. With Linden, the honey is sweet and light and will crystallize easily. Without Linden, it is bitter, dark and will not crystallize easily
  • Friulian Dandelion Certified Traditional Food of Italy – ‘Miele friulano di tarassaco’ (Taraxacum officinale Web)
  • Lime Carso (aka Linden or Basswood) Certified Traditional Food of Italy – ‘Miele di Tiglio del Carso’ (Tilia platyphyllos Scop. – 16 to 45%)
  • Raspberry – ‘Miele di lampone’ (Rubus idaeus)
  • Rhododendron – ‘Miele di rododendro’ (Rhododendron spp.)
  • Sunflower – ‘Miele di girasole’ (Helianthus annuus L.)
  • Wildflower – ‘Miele Millefiori’
    • Wildflower Honey Carso Certified Traditional Food of Italy – ‘Miele millefiori del Carso’ (Tasting notes: Early spring may have the aroma of Bitter Cherry (Prunus mahaleb) while later honey has more legumes with a delicate aroma less easily crystallized and a dark amber color)
    • Mountain Flower Honey Friulian Certified Traditional Food of Italy – ‘Miele millefiori della montagna friulana’ (Tasting notes: Clear beige to dark beige. Delicate aroma and sweet, crystallizes easily)
    • Wildflower Honey from the Friulian Plain Certified Traditional Food of Italy – ‘Miele millefiori della pianura friulana’ (Tasting notes: Early spring mainly from Dandelions (Taraxacum officinale) and clear and easily crystallized, early summer from Acacia (Robinia pseudoacacia) and clear amber and less easily crystallized, and later from Honeydew Metcalf (Metcalfa pruinosa) and dark amber and less easily crystallized)

Less Common/Rare or limited production:

  • Carso Cherry Honey Try this - Exceptional Certified Traditional Food of Italy – ‘Miele di Marasca del Carso’ (Prunus mahaleb – 21 to 61%) (Tasting notes: It has a reddish amber color with mildly bitter taste and aroma of almonds.)
  • False Indigo – ‘Miele Amorfa Fruticosa’ (Amorpha fruticosa L.)
  • Sumac Honeydew Carso – ‘Melata di Sommaco del Carso’ (Family anacardiaceae, Rhus coriaria L.)
  • Savory (aka Abruzzi Thyme Honey) – ‘Miele di santoreggia’ (Satureja montana L.)

Certified Traditional Food of Italy PAT – Honey certified as a Traditional Italian Food.
Slow Food Icon Honey identified and cataloged by the Arc of Taste (Slow Foods)
References and Further Reading
Region of Friuli Venezia Giulia, Italy

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