Honey. It’s good for so much more than sweetening a cup of tea.
The chefs at several metro Atlanta restaurants are putting the versatile ingredient to work in everything from apps to dessert. Scroll down to get a taste, check out these recipes to make your own honey-infused dishes and find out where to buy locally-produced honey.
Honey Lemon Frozen Yogurt is the creation of Aria pastry chef Kathryn King. You won’t find it on the Aria menu, but she says it’s a perfect thing to make at home. “It’s very easy to make your own frozen yogurt, and you can control the flavor and sweetness. The result is much fresher than purchased products, and has no additives. Plus, it’s delicious!” She’s generously supplied the recipe.
Aria, 490 East Paces Ferry Road NE, Atlanta. 404-233-7673, aria-atl.com
Recipe: Honey Lemon Frozen Yogurt from Kathryn King, pastry chef at Aria
3 cups whole milk Greek yogurt
1 cup whole milk
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup Ziegler’s Gallberry Honey
Finely grated zest and juice of one lemon
Mix all ingredients. Freeze according to the instructions for your ice cream freezer. Makes about 1 quart.
Brick Store Pub’s executive chef Rian Tittle uses local honey for two appetizers: the classic BScuit Service with fresh baked buttermilk biscuits and honey and the Cheese Tartlet, topped with a mix of mascarpone, pink peppercorn honey and Georgia Peaches. Tittle uses Zeigler's Gallberry Honey (pure raw unfiltered) from Stockton, Georgia. The store purchased it at the Decatur Farmers Market. They also purchase Wally Bees honey from The Turnip Truck and will be using their honey in the near future.
Brick Store Pub, 125 East Court Square, Decatur. 404-687-0990, BrickStorePub.com
Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta’s executive chef Michael Patria created a breakfast and brunch favorite – a breakfast biscuit with chicken schnitzel and pimento cheese drizzled with Savannah Bee Company Sourwood Honey and served with home fries.
Park 75 at Four Seasons Hotel Atlanta, 75 14th St., Atlanta. 404-881-9898, fourseasons.com/atlanta
EJ Hodgkinson, executive chef at King + Duke, created this recipe and uses honey from a variety of sources including Savannah Bee Company, Dances with Bees and Allisons’ Honey. In addition, he occasionally shares his family’s honey with guests and staff.
King + Duke, 3060 Peachtree Road NW, Atlanta. 404-477-3500, kinganddukeatl.com/
Recipe: EJ Hodgkinson’s Charred Lemon + Honey Vinaigrette
10 lemons, cut in half and charred
1 yellow onion, finely diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
Leaves from 2 thyme sprigs
1 tablespoon Champagne vinegar
2 tablespoons honey (preferably a darker variety)
1 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Kosher salt and black pepper, as needed
Gather all ingredients, cut and process all onions, garlic and thyme sprigs prior to grilling the lemons. In mixing bowl, combine garlic, onions, thyme leaves, champagne vinegar, Dijon mustard and honey. Whisk in juice of charred lemons (while still hot-this will aid in softening the onions and garlic, however will leave some texture which is desirable). Finally, whisk in the olive oil to emulsify, season with salt and pepper to taste. Allow vinaigrette time to chill, then use to dress roasted vegetables and meats as desired.
Pastry Chef Rachel Wright enjoys creating seasonal items for both the dessert menu and their regular lunch and dinner menus at Leon’s Full Service in Decatur. Rachel uses Circle M Farm Honey based in Molena, Georgia. They have 50 hives on a 15-acre family farm, and they offer seasonal produce at various farmers market. Rachel met them at the Avondale Estates market and "fell in love with them right away" especially their honey, potatoes, onions and cabbage. The honey is used in both the Pearson Peach Salad with Honey-Fennel Vinaigrette and the Burnt Honey ice cream, available as special menu items.
Leon's Full Service, 131 E. Ponce de Leon Ave. 404-687-0500, LeonsFullService.com
“Marquis Honey” could be called the epitome of a locally sourced ingredient since it comes from hives kept on the Atlanta Marriott Marquis’ own rooftop. Ever since 2014, the hotel has proudly produced their own honey using local bees from North Georgia. They harvest between 40 and 50 gallons of honey each year, and use the honey on the menu, for room amenities and in easy grab + go food items from M-Store.
Chef Akieme Evans shared the hotel’s granola recipe and chef Pamela Davis shared the recipe for her honey-lime vinaigrette.
Atlanta Marriott Marquis Hotel & Convention Center, 265 Peachtree Center Ave., Atlanta. 404-521-0000, atlantamarquis.com
Recipe: Marriott Marquis Granola
Makes 5 pounds
1 1/4 pounds unsalted butter
1/2 pound light brown sugar
2 ounces Marquis honey
2 pounds steel-cut oatmeal
1 1/4 pounds Rice Krispies cereal
3/4 pound sliced almonds
4 tablespoons sea salt flakes
Melt together butter, brown sugar & Marquis Honey.
Stir in dry ingredients
Divide onto oiled sheet pans.
Bake at 325F for 15 to 20 minutes until golden.
Remove from the oven and season with sea salt.
Let cool at room temperature.
Cover, label & date.
Store in a container in a cool, dry place.
Recipe: Marquis Honey Lime Vinaigrette
Makes: 1 pint
2 finely chopped garlic cloves
1 finely chopped shallot
2 tablespoons Marquis honey
Juice and zest of 1 lime
2 sprigs parsley, finely chopped
1/4 cup Champagne vinegar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 cup salad oil
1 tablespoon kosher salt
Combine all ingredients except for the oil and salt.
Slowly add the oil utilizing an immersion blender and emulsify to create dressing without breaking.
Season to taste with salt.
Cover, label & date.
Store in the cooler at 40F or below.
Milton’s Cuisine & Cocktails executive chef Derek Dollar uses honey from Allison’s Honey near Cleveland in several vegetable dishes. The restaurant’s Heirloom Baby Carrots have a Jalapeno Honey glaze. And the Charred Brussels Sprouts with Apples are dressed with a cracked Mustard-Sherry-Bacon Vinaigrette sweetened with honey. Dollar says, “The carrots are a takeoff of the classic glazed carrots which usually have maple syrup. I think the tanginess and heat of the jalapeño honey accentuate the sweetness of the heirloom carrots. As for the Brussels sprouts, they are bitter, so the honey helps balance it out along with the bacon.”
Milton’s Cuisine & Cocktails, 800 Mayfield Road, Milton. 770-817-0161, miltonscuisine.com
The Black Pepper Crusted Lamb with Sticky Sweet Spiced Cherry Honey on the menu of Muss & Turner’s is the creation of chef de cuisines Dameren Parenteau. He prefers to use either Organic Mountains honey or Swarm Chasers Apiaries honey as they are both local to the Smyrna/Mableton areas.
Muss & Turner’s, 1675 Cumberland Pkwy SE, Smyrna. 770-434-1114, mussandturners.com
Recipe: Black Pepper Crusted Lamb with Sticky Sweet Spiced Cherry Honey
Serves 2-4 (small plate)
8 bone rack of lamb
1/4 cup neutral oil (canola, soybean, etc.)
1 tbsp ground black pepper
3 each star anise
1 tsp whole black peppercorn
1 tsp fennel seed
1 cup cherry puree
1 cup local honey
crushed pistachios for garnish
Portion and marinate the lamb chops:
Cut rack into 2 bone sections.
Whisk together oil and ground black pepper.
Toss the chops with the oil and pepper marinade and allow to marinate in refrigerator for several hours or overnight.
Make the spiced cherry honey while the chops marinate:
Heat a sauté pan and add star anise, whole peppercorns, and fennel seed over medium heat, tossing constantly until fragrant.
Combine the toasted spices with the cherry puree and honey in a small sauce pan.
Add a pinch of kosher salt.
Reduce, stirring frequently, by 50% over low heat until a smooth syrup is achieved.
Strain out the toasted spices.
Chill and reserve.
To prepare the chops:
Heat a small amount of neutral oil in a sauté pan.
Season the marinated chops with kosher salt.
Carefully place chops into pan and sear on all sides until desired temperature is achieved. (We recommend medium rare to medium)
Just before the chops reach desired temperature, remove pan from heat and add enough glaze to liberally coat the lamb chops.
Carefully remove each double chop from the pan and cut into single chops, exposing the interior.
Place chops on plate. Can serve 2 bones per person for a quick bite or 4 for a small plate.
Drizzle with remaining sauce in pan.
Garnish with crushed pistachio.
A smear of Greek yogurt on the plate is a nice touch as the richness and tang of the yogurt can cut through the sweetness of the glaze.
Nakato Japanese Restaurant uses honey-infused Teriyaki Glaze on their Kushiyaki skewers, a combination of four skewers of shrimp, scallops, chicken, beef sirloin and vegetables. The recipe was created by executive chef Yosi Kinjo.
Nakato Japanese Restaurant, 1776 Cheshire Bridge Road, Atlanta. 404-873-6582
Ray’s on the River uses Blue Ridge Mountain honey in their Lacquered Columbia River King Salmon with grilled Georgia peaches and quinoa.
Ray’s on the River, 6700 Powers Ferry Road NW, Sandy Springs. 770-955-1187
Recipe: Honey Lacquer from Ray’s on the River
1/2 cup Blue Ridge Mountain orange blossom honey
1/2 cup water
1 ounce bourbon
1 shallot, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 sprig each lavender, thyme and oregano
In a small saucepan, bring honey, water and bourbon to a boil. Add shallot, bay leaves, lavender, thyme and oregano. Reduce heat, simmer 5 minutes. Remove from heat and strain.
Chef Andy Long of South Main Kitchen and Butcher & Brew uses Newnan-based Wally Bees Honey wildflower honey in their South Main Granola. For Sunday brunch, they serve the granola with raisins, fresh berries, peaches and Greek yogurt they mix with honey.
South Main Kitchen, 9 South Main St. Alpharetta. 678-691-4622, southmainkitchen.com
Recipe: South Main Granola Recipe
2 1/2 cups rolled oats
1/2 cup Wally Bee’s wildflower honey
1/2 cup melted butter
2 cups sliced almonds
1/3 cup Anson Mills benne seeds (or sesame seeds)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cardamom
1/8 teaspoon cloves
Preheat oven to 325F.
Combine all ingredients and mix together thoroughly. Place on a Silpat mat or parchment-lined baking sheet and bake at 325 for 20 minutes, stirring and rotating pan every 5 minutes. Let cool.
Honey Glazed Salmon with Crispy Quinoa is the creation of David Bartlett, chef de cuisine at Southern Art & Bourbon Bar. He likes using Alison’s Honey out of Cleveland.
Southern Art & Bourbon Bar, 3315 Peachtree Road, Atlanta. 404-946-9070, southernart.com/
Twain's Brewpub & Billiards’ executive chef Ryan Burke sources ingredients as local as possible. That’s everything from seasonal vegetables, proteins from local farms, and the local honey. Burke purchases Zeigler's orange blossom honey to use on the restaurant’s Honey and Coriander-Glazed Carrots. He says the citrus and floral flavors of the orange blossom honey helps bring a little zest to the carrots.
Twain's Brewpub & Billiards, 211 East Trinity Place, Decatur. 404-373-0063, twains.net
The favorite honey dish for chef Pat Pascarella's of Decatur’s The White Bull? It’s Ricotta Toast with Figs and Local Truffle Honey. The restaurant makes ricotta in-house, but you can use ricotta from the grocery store. The restaurant infuses Zeigler’s Honey with canned truffles and a pinch of clove to add a rich layer of flavor, and layers the figs with sorrel leaves to provide a tart contrast to the succulent figs.
The White Bull, 123 E. Court Square, Decatur. 404-600-5649, whitebullatl.com/
Recipe: Roasted Fig Toast with Truffle Honey & Ricotta
1 slice bread from a batard
1 tablespoon butter
5 fresh figs, cut in half
1/4 cup ricotta
Sea salt, to taste
Extra virgin olive oil, to taste
6 green sorrel leaves
For the truffle honey:
1/4 cup Zeigler's Wildflower Honey
1 tablespoon chopped canned black truffles
1 pinch ground cloves
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Smear butter on bread and toast in an oven proof pan on low heat. Once golden brown on both sides, remove bread from pan and set aside.
Using the same pan, put the figs cut side down in the pan and roast in oven for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, make the truffle honey by combining all ingredients in a stainless steel bowl and whisk together.
To assemble place the toast on a plate and top with ricotta. Top the ricotta and toast with the figs. Drizzle with truffle honey, extra virgin olive oil and sea salt. To finish, garnish with green sorrel leaves.