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Honey Journal #15

Monday, Aug 4, 2008

Name: Rosas Organic Honey

You can buy it: On the internet here. Or the next time you’re in La Paz.

Country: Boliviahttp://i336.photobucket.com/albums/n328/allen1844/RosasB.jpg

Purchased: May, 2008

Color: Peanut Brittle Brown

Flavor: Distinct lemony flavor with a minty follow through. Refreshingly tart.

Consistency: Medium. It’s worth noting that this honey sits in the jar like organic peanut butter – a thin oil layer on top of a thicker layer underneath. You have to mix it up to even out the consistency.

Fragrance: Lemon with a suggestion of caramel.

Notes: Bolivia is the poorest country in South America. It seems like it’s always been that way. Riddled with corruption, every new revolution promises prosperity and delivers more poverty. In the first half of this decade, the country finally seemed to making some progress, but the election of a new socialist government has quickly taken care of that. A pal of Hugo Chavez, the current president, Evo Morales, finds himself in all kinds of trouble. The country is literally threatening to break apart.

One of the common myths of history is that nations rich in natural resources which Bolivia is have a distinct advantage over other nations. The opposite is often true. The rule of law, respect for property, low taxes and honest government are much more important than mineral deposits. Bolivia is bigger than Texas and has infinitely more natural resources than Japan or Singapore. Yet the latter countries are wealthy and Bolivia is a basket case.

In addition to gold, silver, tin and natural gas, we now discover that they produce an excellent honey. Bees, fortunately, do what they do whatever the political climate.

This honey comes from the Bolivian highlands. When they say high, they’re not kidding. The Andes runs right through the western end of the country. The bees work the Salvia plant (also known as Bolivian sage) which grows on mountain slopes at altitudes of 10-12,000 feet.

What is the most famous event in Bolivian history, at least from an American perspective? It has to be that Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid dramatically ended their careers there. You’ve all probably seen the Paul Newman, Robert Redford film on this subject, but if you haven’t, add it to your must see list.

As much as I’d like to visit Bolivia, we’re not going there on a Prager Listener Cruise. It’s landlocked.

Finally, my wife Susie loves this honey. She just lit up when she first tasted it. Her opinion has only been confirmed by further tastings. As usual, I agree.

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