A Great Texas Daytrip
It's almost hard to believe that the Weaver Family's been beekeeping since 1888, but it's true. They certainly know everything there is to know about bees, having five generations of beekeepers in the family. Over the past few years, Danny and Laura Weaver have created an inviting retreat in the Texas countryside where folks can come enjoy nature. Just a short one-hour drive northwest of Houston, BeeGoods Mercantile offers honey bees, queens, equipment, lessons, tours, demos, tastings and gifts.
Each year, they host visitors from around the world to celebrate "Buzzfest" in May, "Infuzzed" in September, and "Holidazze" in December, whereby food trucks, musicians and vendors share in the bee experiences. Nearly every weekend, folks enjoy social time in the honey house and gift shop relaxing on the porches while sipping on refreshing drinks.
For the adults, the honey gift shop sells Rohan Meadery's delicious mead from La Grange and Wildflyer's mead from Navasota. Bring the kids; they'll have so much fun they won't know that they're learning!
We had a little fun in the bee yard a few days ago! Look at our girls working hard to make honey in their hive. We're asked quite a bit, "How do bees make honey?" Here's a very short and informative video that explains exactly how the bees do it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KPKg43uUUtA
Here's a great photo from one of our hives. These worker bees are situated on top of the queen's brood. You can see just beneath them are brownish, felt-like hexagons and some black hexagons. The brownish ones are baby bees yet to be born. The black ones are actually empty cells where baby bees were grown prior to emerging from their hexagon cell to join their new honey bee colony. Can you spot the queen bee in this photo? (Hint: She's quite a bit larger than her worker bees!)
Buc-ee's...It's a Texas Thang!
Us Texans know…when your taking a road trip across our state, one of your stops is going to be at a Buc-ee’s. Known for their exceptionally clean restrooms, Buc-ee’s super-sized convenient stores (actually, it’s much more than a convenient store) are a port of call for kids and adults.
There are more than 30 Buc-ee’s locations in Texas and they’ve just opened their first location outside of this state in Robertsdale, Alabama. Buc-ee’s does everything “Texas-style” and we love it. Take for instance their Katy, Texas location that opened just a couple of years ago. That store features 100 gas pumps and a 225 foot-long car wash. Inside, customers spread out within 50,000 square feet of space and can shop for Buc-ee’s Beaver Nuggets, beef jerky, fudge, kolaches, pickled quail eggs and so many more delicious treats. Shoppers can also peruse other merchandise including t-shirts, rain boots, reading glasses, deer corn, bar-b-que pits and our Fiery Sweet Mesquite honey. Check out the “Retailers” page on our website to find out which locations offer our honey.
Get Ready, Houston Heights!
Those of you who are unfamiliar with the Houston Heights neighborhood, you're missing out. Houston Heights ("The Heights") is one of the most eclectic pockets of the entire city of Houston. There's something for everyone in The Heights!
The neighborhood is Houston's oldest planned community, established in 1890 and was annexed to the City of Houston in 1918. Positioned just a few miles northwest of downtown Houston, the hip and earthy community celebrates a diverse culture, outstanding art, and trendy restaurants to satisfy a wide variety of palates. Folks look forward to participating in many reoccurring events like Heights First Saturday, White Linen Night, Mistletoe Madness, and Lights in the Heights.
Some great Heights hangouts include We Olive & Wine Bar, Onion Creek, Boomtown Coffee and Heights Bier Garten. Alice Blue (a great place for date night) is a rather new eatery in the neighborhood, but once their doors opened they fit right in. The historic Heights Theater opened in 1929 and has housed a variety of venues since then. Today, it is used as an event space for intimate gatherings including private events as well as musicals and concerts that are open to the public.
And the shopping! A favorite for the ladies is Jubilee, showcasing trendy, unique gifts and funky apparel. For the guys, Manready Mercantile is all the rave. Several antique stores line 19th Street, (that's the main drag).
A retailer that has been missing in The Heights neighborhood is grocery. But, that's not the case any longer. We're all very excited that H-E-B is opening their new two-story location on Shepherd Drive in just a couple of days. The store will not only fill a grocery void, but it will be bringing its Texas pride along with it, appeasing many of us cult followers.
And, we're thrilled to say that Lone Star Bee Company's infused honeys are already on the H-E-B Houston Heights' shelf. If you're planning a trip to Houston, or if you're already here and looking for a way to kill some time, make your way to The Heights. (While you're there, pick up some of our honey at H-E-B). It's a fun neighborhood for everyone!
The results are in and...
Friends, we are beaming! It has just been announced that our Lucky Lime & Sea Salt Clover Honey is the Second Runner Up in the Food Category in the First Annual Texas Works Awards Presented by Go Texan. We'd like to thank the Food Category judge, Jess Pryles, for taking notice of our honey.
Chet Garner and Vincent Friedewald created such a wonderful program in Texas Works. They’re shining a light on so many talented Texas entrepreneurs and we feel so lucky to have been in very, very good company for this competition.
Thank you, Texas Works!
Baby, it's cold outside!
'Tis the season! Warm yourself up with this smooth and tasty beverage. The ancient Aztec's created Xocoatl, a unique drink somewhat like a spiced hot chocolate. Try this similar medley using our Fiery Sweet Mesquite honey.
Spicy Bourbon Hot Cocoa
1 cup almond milk
2 tablespoons Fiery Sweet Mesquite honey
2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tablespoon of your favorite bourbon (optional)
1 pinch kosher salt
Slowly whisk honey, cocoa powder, and salt in a one-half quart or one quart saucepan over medium heat. Bring it to a low simmer and slowly whisk in the almond milk. Cook, while stirring, until slightly thickened and beginning to bubble at edges. Slowly stir in bourbon. Pour into mug for serving.
For those who enjoy more spice, add 3 tablespoons of Fiery Sweet Mesquite honey instead of 2 tablespoons.
Have you noticed? Lately, there's been a lot of focus on Texas entrepreneurs and we're loving it! Since we began our adventure producing our infused honeys a couple of years ago, we've met several other Texas entrepreneurs making their wares just like us. These entrepreneurs work nonstop to design, create and sell their craft. It's been an inspiring and rewarding time and we're thrilled to be part of this positive energy.
This year, Texas Works surfaced, shining a bright light on us hardworking Texans. Founded by Chet Garner and Vincent Friedewald, Texas Works highlights the innovation, entrepreneurship and creative achievements of Texas-based product makers and their brands. Chet and Vincent celebrate the great State of Texas. Some of you may have seen Chet as the host of the television series "The Daytripper" showcasing the best travel destinations in Texas. Vincent is the founder and CEO of No. 4 St. James, an impressive Texas lifestyle brand. Together, they've come up with a fantastic awards program; The Texas Works Awards.
Chet Garner and Vincent Friedewald
The contest focuses on the creativity, ingenuity and entrepreneurial spirit of Texans like us. Eight categories make up the contest, and are judged by these very talented individuals:
As a proud Texas product maker, Lone Star Bee Company entered the Texas Works Awards contest and we are excited to say that we have advanced to the semifinalist round in the Food category! Soon, three finalists will be selected for each category. One overall grand prize winner will be chosen on or around November 26 and will receive a $10,000 cash prize!
We are privileged to be part of such a wonderful experience and we thank YOU all for the support you've given us along our entrepreneurial adventure. Stay tuned to hear more details about the Texas Works Awards!
Spicy Pumpkin Latte!
Now that the cool autumn season is upon us, we've been indulging in our sweet Spicy Pumpkin Latte! I must say, our recipe definitely rivals the Pumpkin Spice Latte created by that Seattle-based coffeehouse chain that we all know so well.
You can make your own Spicy Pumpkin Latte in the coziness of your home for many pennies less than retail cost. And, our recipe includes one extra special ingredient – our Fiery Sweet Mesquite honey. The honeyed-habanero heat in this pumpkin beverage will give you a warm internal afterglow. See for yourself!
1 ⅓ cup almond milk (sweetened)
½ cup pumpkin puree
3 tbsp extra strong coffee
2 tbsp Fiery Sweet Mesquite honey
2 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp whip cream (plus extra to top off latte)
1 tsp pumpkin pie spices
½ tsp vanilla extract
½ tsp almond extract
Using a small saucepan over medium heat, whisk together almond milk, pumpkin puree and coffee. Add honey and whipped cream and whisk to combine the ingredients. Add sugar, pumpkin pie spices, vanilla extract and almond extract. Continue whisking the mixture until the temperature reaches near boiling. Remove from heat and use ladle to spoon into mugs. Dollop a spoonful of whipped cream on top of your Spicy Pumpkin Latte to finish it off. Serves two.
Visit our "Recipes" page to enjoy more fun pairings using our infused honeys!
So, this is really cool! You may have "heard" me mention BeeWeaver and BeeGoods Mercantile on occasion. The Weavers are a family of beekeepers at work in Navasota, Texas. Their place is open to the public for hive tours, beekeeping lessons, bees and beekeeping supplies, and much more. They have scheduled an exciting event for Saturday, September 29, 2018 (from 11am - 3pm) called INFUZZED!
Now that fall is just around the corner and the weather is cooling just a bit, it will be a great day to take a short drive from Houston or Austin and come out to BeeWeaver's Honey Farm and taste several infused honeys. This will be a perfect event to see and learn about art inspired by the honey bee and more.
Other happenings at the event include All We Need Farmer, Stacey, who will share her expertise in making unique Honey Pops. She will be assisted by a few of her happy milk goats. Moon Dance Jeweler, Nola, will be there to demonstrate how to make beautiful bracelets with bee notes sprinkled in. Bring the family and enjoy the day at INFUZZED!
Look at These Hard Workers!
Often, we here at Lone Star Bee Company stay pretty busy and forget to take a break and realize how far we've come in such a short time. It was just three short years ago when we stumbled upon our beekeeping passion and soon afterward starting infusing honeys. And, we've enjoyed it every step of the way.
Today, we made it a point to take this moment to share a fantastic shot of these ladies who bring us such joy!
Nicki Praiswater is co-founder and co-owner of Lone Star Bee Company alongside her life-partner, Mark Crippen. Together, they both enjoy beekeeping, traveling and eating great foods.