Today I stopped by the newly-opened Green-in-Hand retail shop on Renai Road. If you’re into high-quality, independently produced food products, you’ll be in heaven.
Green-in-Hand is devoted to sharing stories about Taiwanese agriculture. The idea is that the farmers do the growing, while Green-in-Hand does the marketing and packaging. They do such a good job that a handful of products have won Red Dot awards for package design.
Since it was raining outside, I sat down and enjoyed a Taiwanese honey tasting at the counter. The experience was just like a wine tasting. I was amazed at how unique the flavors and textures were.
There’s a lot to learn about honey. Like how honey is sold by “vintage” just like wine, because each year’s harvest depends on the season’s climate and how the flowers bloom. And like wine, one year’s version might taste completely different from the previous year’s.
For example, the Hundred Flower honey bottled in April 2014 has a special note mentioning the 2013 weather was “moody”, which caused the flowers to bloom all at once. I just love that. The final product is exactly what nature intended without any chemical interference.
I tried all eight of their natural varieties: Pomelo, Winter Herbal, Hundred Flower, Osmanthus Flower, Camellia, Lychee, Cinnamomum and Ternstroemia.
The only question is which one to pick? Personally, I loved the Pomelo and the Hundred Flower. But honestly, I would eat any of them straight up with a spoon. Or, you know, in a cocktail.
There was a lot more to browse after my honey tasting was over. Green-in-Hand has been around for nine years and they have a very well-rounded catalog. They’re most well-known for their rice products. I mean, look at that packaging. It looks way too good to open and eat.
They also have teas, rice wine, chopsticks, textiles and ceramics. All pretty irresistible. All made in Taiwan.
Before I left, the shop assistant said I had to lift the lid on the massive rice urn. She was right. The fragrance coming from the rice was so good.
I really recommend dropping in for a honey tasting at the shop. It’s such a unique experience and the staff are so passionate about these simple, yet truly special products.