Chef's Palate

"A person's appreciation of taste and flavor, especially when sophisticated and discriminating."

Who better to judge the taste and flavor of raw honey versus fake honey which has been filtered and pasteurized, than a chef?

To the chefs of the world what do you really know about your 'honey?'

1.  Does your 'honey' have pollen in it?  If it doesn't and it probably doesn't that's the initial test.  Has your 'honey' been filtered?  Has your 'honey' been pasteurized?  Ask your honey vendor these questions.  And just because he says one thing, doesn't make it necessarily so.

2.  Did you know the honey market is a racket?

3.  I assume you demand more than simply 'sweet' as to the quality of the honey you serve your customers.

4.  Simply put, I believe your 'honey' is fake because it has been filtered and pasteurized.  My Raw Shire Honey has not been filtered nor pasteurized and therefore its taste and flavor are superior to your fake honey.

I'll add to this page.  In the meantime, if you have a question, please feel free to email me or telephone me.

Jim Giles, the beekeeper and honey vendor.

My email communication with chefs:  (This presentation is dynamic as I hone the essence of the honey market racket.)

Subject:  Honey

It was a pleasure to meet you.  Your restaurant’s ambiance is awesome!

I am a beekeeper and I only sell honey that comes from my hives and I do not filter or pasteurize my honey.  I strain my honey only which does not remove the pollen.  My honey has pollen in it.  I have never sold someone else’s honey as my own and I never will.  I have never processed my honey and I never will.  I have never adulterated my honey and I never will.

The honey industry is a racket because those who sell honey in large part misrepresent what they are selling as honey when it is nothing more than fake honey.

I dislike having to qualify my honey as raw.  Only raw honey is real honey.  Either it’s honey or not.  If it’s not truly raw honey, it’s fake honey.  If it’s processed, i.e., filtered, pasteurized or adulterated, it’s no longer honey.

There are degrees of fakeness when it comes to honey.  The darkest and most dire and potentially harmful fake honey has been adulterated and may contain contaminants.  At the next level you have honey packers who buy honey in 55 gallon barrels and resell as their own honey.  You even have beekeepers at local farmers markets who do the same.

Consider this post:

It has become apparent to me that many people selling honey at farmers markets, craft shows, and smaller venues talk about their honey as if all of it is from their hives when some of it is not. I know how many hives these people have and the amount of honey they are selling exceeds what they are producing. I also happen to know this because I am hearing other beekeepers (commercial/side liners) talking about selling honey to those that are acting as if the honey they sell is all their own.
I am not naive enough to think this does not happen but my question is about the ethics of it. My opinion is that most people approaching a booth at smaller events assume the honey they are buying from the local beekeeper is solely from that beeks hives. When I know it is not, my opinion of that beek is diminished and I wonder what the buyer would think if they knew the truth.
If I am going to compete with these beeks, should I mention this to buyers?
Your thoughts please.


FYI, a beek is shorthand for beekeeper.

Does your honey source buy honey from others and sell as his own?  I never have done that and never will.  It is without question to me, unethical.  It is also a common practice even at farmers markets.

I assume you are buying your honey from an alleged beekeeper.  Ask your honey source these questions:

  1. Does all of your honey come from your hives only?
  2. Do you buy bulk honey and resell as your own?
  3. Do you filter your honey?
  4. Do you pasteurize your honey?
  5. How do you store your honey?
  6. What do you do to keep your honey from crystallizing?
  7. What do you do to keep your honey from fermenting?
  8. How many hives do you have?
  9. Does your honey have pollen in it?

Because raw honey can ferment, raw honey vendors are necessarily small batch operations, nothing too big, because raw honey doesn’t lend itself to big inventories, i.e., you can’t effectively store raw honey in 55 gallon barrels which is the standard storage mechanism for the honey industry which again is nothing more than a racket.

To date, my honey sales have been exclusively at the front door of the Mississippi Farmers Market every Saturday from 8 a.m. until 2 p.m.

Additionally, I do not sell my honey at a discount to anyone.  To the contrary, I sell it at a premium price because of its quality, uniqueness, limited supply and the difficulty in producing it.  And because of the aforementioned possibility my raw honey can ferment, it does not lend itself to being stored in a large container for a lengthy period of time.  It’s meant to be used in the short term from a three-pound (one quart) container which I sell for $40.

I’m very interested to know what your palate’s reaction is to the honey sample I left with you (No matter what I argue, you should be able to tell a big difference in how my honey tastes) and answer any questions you might have.  I will be refining my presentation to chefs like yourself over time here:

Yours Truly,

Jimmy D. Giles
Giles Shire LLC
173 Pear Lane
Pearl, MS 39208

P.S.  "In the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration says that any product that’s been ultra-filtered and no longer contains pollen isn’t honey."  Dr. Vaughn Bryant can test your honey and tell you whether it has pollen in it or not:

P.P.S.  Documentation as to the proposition that the honey industry is a racket: