14 May, 2012
Skinflint’s firebee honey
See? It still looks like I’m here in Ireland, but I actually wrote this in the past and sent it for publication to the future. Right now, I should be somewhere in Japan.
I’m a big fan of Skinflint’s pizza, which is markedly different from the usual fare you get in most “cheap and cheerful” Italian spots, and it’s definitely one of my go-to places in Dublin for a reliable, filling cheap eat, with most of the pizzas priced in and around the €10 mark (making it – rather unsurprisingly – a good spot for dinner under €10).
But I’m not here to talk about the pizza. No, like a badger raiding a bee’s nest, I’m lured to Skinflint by the honey. It lay at the edge of the table and, as an afterthought, I reluctantly squeezed a dollop onto my plate and dipped the last bites of my pizza into it. Regrets, I’ve had a few, but I was instantly pained that I had allowed so much pizza pass my lips without smearing honey all over it.
This is no ordinary honey. No, this honey is infused with bay leaf, chilli, and vinegar, and discovering it felt just like the time I met anchovies, and they changed my relationship with food forever. I poured a large squeeze directly down my throat, and left.
At €5 a bottle, it’s not exactly as cheap as the jar you’ll find in your local Lidl, but it’s worth it. Later, I received a very welcome gift of Skinflint’s honey from a friend. But I wasn’t sure what to do with it, so I asked Skinflint via Twitter. Cheese, eggs, ham, bread, they advised: all made sense. All work incredibly well. I smeared it all over bacon and cried hot tears of pure ecstasy. But they also told me to have it in coffee. Coffee? Really? Vinegar chilli honey in coffee?
Oh yeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah. A decent espresso or Americano goes incredibly well with a kick of chilli. Especially chilli honey. I’ve been pouring this in my coffee ever since. I was encouraged to go further: believe it or not, the Firebee honey gets on really well mixed with natural yoghurt and fresh fruit. And I’m keen to try it with anything else edible.
I’ve run out of this simple, surprising, and delicious creation, but plan to pick up a crateful when I’m next in Skinflint. Also, I want a big block of honeycomb, stolen by humans from bees with the help of a honeyguide bird. Just like this honeyguide bird in this extraordinary clip from BBC’s Human Planet. I might try and find something similar in Borneo. Anyway, check it out and be amazed: