About The Beer
Brewery: Arbre Aux Abeilles
Format: 750ml Bottle
Yves-Élie and Chantal, for more than ten years, have been passionate about the local black bee, the endemic European bee, present for more than a million years in northwestern Europe, from the Pyrenees to Scandinavia. In 2006, they set up as beekeepers in Pont-de-Montvert. In 2008, they created their association L'Arbre aux Abeilles, which works to preserve the black bee in the heart of the Cévennes National Park. Many volunteers, beekeepers or not, help them take care of the La Vallée de l'abeille noire (the Valley of the Black Bee) conservatory, which now has more than one hundred and fifty colonies.
Each honey from L'Arbre aux Abeilles is a range of aromas linked to a place, an altitude, a terrain. The apiaries are spread out from top to bottom of the Cévennes. They are made up of frame hives, but Chantal and Yves-Élie, for educational purposes, reserve a few trunk hives (built in hollowed-out tree trunks), covered with slate stones, witnesses of an age-old practice. They have also carried out restoration projects for ancient trunk apiaries, not only for their historical and cultural value but also because they wish to rehabilitate them in order to give local bees back an artificial habitat which has been theirs for centuries. The experiment is in progress.
As beekeepers, their principle is to harvest only the surplus honey, which the bees do not need. These honeys, where the plant diversity of their region is concentrated, are those “that the bees make for themselves”. This harvest is partially transformed into mead, a very old drink resulting from the fermentation of honey by its natural yeasts. The international success of the three cuvées of mead from L'Arbre aux Abeilles demonstrates, once again, the importance of preserving and bringing up to date thousand-year-old food traditions.