The bees are also astonished
KLAUS FARTHOFER BREAKS LIMITS. HIS HONEY CREATIONS MAKE EVERYTHING KNOWN IN THE SHADOW. THERE ARE TASTE EXPLOSIONS IN THE SIGN OF THE BEE.
First of all, there is no talk. First of all, it costs. As much as Klaus Farthofer likes to talk about his bees, honey and beekeeping, he is so silent - first of all. "Try, then talk," he says curtly. Obviously, the beekeeper from Schwaz knows exactly why he strictly adheres to this order. All sorts of glasses are on a beautiful tasting presentation stand, all of which bear the clear, coherent logo of the Farthofer apiary. Classic with screw cap are there and even more classic mason jars with the well-known red rubber ring. In a small bowl are small spoons. And here we go.
The beekeeper unscrews the first glass, takes a spoon and dips it. He brings out a beautiful dark brown honey mass and the honey tastes so full and velvety and deep and tasty, as really good honey tastes. "This is our normal honey," he explains and it is clear that the word "normal" builds up some tension.
At the beginning of October, the Schwazer was informed that his honey had reached the highest score in the Honey Award of the National Beekeeping Association with 80 out of 80 points. Yes, even with honey, there are testers who, like their better known colleagues in wine or liquor from many small sensory details and scientifically verifiable facts to judge the entire work. This is not the first gold medal for the products of the family Farthofer, to which not only humans but quite a lot of industrious bees count. Their sticks are fairly well distributed in the silver region. They stand in their own garden in Schwaz, in Vomperbach, on the Weerberg, on the Pillberg, in Gallzein and in Stans. At their various locations, they are looked after and persuaded with much dedication to exchange their honey. "From the spring, when they start to fly, every ninth day I go to each floor, except when elephants are hailing or I am breeding the queen bees. To look into the sticks too often is not good at all. They do not like that, "says Klaus.
He knows his bees well, knows how they react and gets their mood from time to time to feel. Their arguments are then captivating: "When you are calm yourself, you are gentle. But it may also be that they are funnier - when a thunderstorm comes for example. "What bees do not like is sweat or the smell when someone comes out of a cowshed. "Do you smell normal, the way a person smells, they do not do anything," he says.
His father started out with "the bees" 58 years ago and Klaus Farthofer grew up with her rhythm and the fascination that they can sustain for a lifetime in such an infected person. At some point he got his first own stick, then other bees interested him too, and then the question arose whether or not he would continue beekeeping. His answer was yes. For too long, the bees had seized him and never let go. "The animal knows that there must be gas in the spring, it develops to the main crop, from the summer solstice says the queen: So, now the year is over. And she goes back to the laying power. The bees that now hatch are fed differently, so that they are long-lived, "Klaus Farthofer gives a little insight into the year of the bees.
A working bee lives between five and six weeks, the winter bee must be able to survive between three and five months and the drones, yes, the male bees, whose sole purpose is to make the queen happy, are thrown out at the end of the bee year. "These are the drone battles," says the beekeeper. Anyone who is confronted as a layman with expertise and realizes that it is the tiny multiplication table, to which the knowing counterpart is forced to limit himself, fades slightly. The very fact that a beehive always has an operating temperature of 34 to 35 degrees, both summer and winter, and miraculously manages to maintain that temperature and defy heat like bitter cold, makes buff. Those who rely on the common knowledge that bees are among the most important pollinators in the world and make a priceless contribution not only to the preservation of wild and cultivated plants, but also to the yields, return to safe ground. No wonder that Klaus Farthofer was at the forefront in the fall of 2015, when the city of Schwaz created a model flower meadow to feed the bees. At that time as well as today, the passionate beekeeper emphasizes that private garden owners already create an extremely valuable habitat for the local honey bees with their two square meters of flower meadow. It is also valuable what they make of it. Honey.
Honey. The bee makes him. He tastes good. And he is healthy. So far so good. But whoever still thinks honey is honey is mistaken. Yes, now the dramaturgy goes into the second round.
Klaus Farthofer picks up the next glass and takes a tasting with the spoon. The consistency is tougher than that of the "normal" cream honey, it is brown and barely touches her tongue and palate, makes it bumm. It's an explosion that happens there and in a split second conjures an astonished-happy smile in the face. It is reminiscent of Nutella, but this famous spread quickly fades to sugary-fat Fadesse. "This is our honey with hazelnut - a pure natural product made from 74 percent creamy honey, 25 percent hazelnut mousse and one percent organic cocoa," explains Farthofer, who lets the other's reaction be grinning. Is she limited to the word "wow"? It is the grin of a connoisseur, the reaction of those who try this honey with hazelnut for the first time must be similar. The taste melts holistically, not unlike the honey in the mouth, and the temptation to get another spoon is not small.
But nothing there. A sip of water neutralises the taste buds that have fallen out of joint and the next spoon is served. Honey with almond. Another melted "wow". Followed by honey with cinnamon, which shakes all Christmas, and the beekeeper opens the door to another unknown world. It presents itself in a wire tumbler, is more red than rosé and exudes its unmistakable aroma shortly after opening: Strawberry. The resulting expectation is exceeded in the mouth. As if the essence of a whole strawberry field was captured in honey - for just that moment. It is gigantic. "For our honey with fruit we use selected, freeze-dried fruits," explains Klaus Farthofer and the majority of people who are ringing in it make the palate rejoice: honey with aronia berry, raspberry, blueberry, blackberry and sour cherry. No, those who are convinced that honey is like honey and "differs only" from the fields and trees and forests where the bees used to flourish have - and this may well be said after this tasting - at all no idea.
With its honey products, which, in addition to all sorts of propolis variations, cover the salutary, the caring products, the soothing and with the alcoholized, the well-behaved spheres, the apiary Farthofer puts all the known in the shade. The bees are also astonished.
SAY THE QUEEN: SO, NOW THE YEAR IS ENDING. "
Klaus Farthofer, beekeeper
The fruit press of the fruit and horticultural society Schwaz elicits up to 70,000 liters …