Yemeni Honey

A fantastic evening exploring the Deira Souq in old Riyadh yielded a purchase of yemeni honey.  I found the various honey stores along one street near the sewing machine repair stores and not too far from the Masmak Fortress.  Every small honey store immediately offered samples of yemeni honey to taste, even if they had other honey origins for sale.  In fact we had to press the owners to even determine if they had honey from other places (the yemeni honey was definitely the most expensive.)

Samples of the lightly flavored honey was offered on small plastic spoons, just like baskin robbins samples at home.  We went through maybe 5 honey stores before we decided to return to the second store for our purchase.  The Saudi owner had been especially welcoming and patient with our communication difficulties.  When we returned to the shop, we found him having a video chat with someone via his computer.  He explained that it was his wife and proceeded to organize our purchase of yemeni honey (for a special treat) and kashmiri honey (for everyday here at the house.)  But he also urged me to greet his wife via the video chat.  She spoke a bit of english and so I took his chair behind his desk and exchanged pleasantries with her.

He ended up offering the kashmiri honey for free and then after giving my husband his business card, extended a bottle of perfume for me as well.

The Saudi Aramco World magazine had an interesting article on yemeni honey from 1995.  You can read the article here:  http://www.saudiaramcoworld.com/issue/199501/the.beekeepers.of.wadi.du.an.htm

I suppose that bees have to work a lot harder in the desert than they do in someplace significantly more verdant – maybe that accounts for the high value.  I have saved the store location in my GPS and hope to go back for some comb honey next time.

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