DALLAS—Omni Hotels & Resorts’ love affair with “nature’s sweetener” began long before Firmenich named it 2015 Flavor of the Year. For years, five Omni properties, with a collective 300,000 bees, have been harvesting their own beehives, and using honey in everything from culinary dishes to spa treatments. Fast forward to 2015 and a natural collaboration was developed with the National Honey Board (NHB) to create custom-curated menu specialties that reflect the sweet seasonal flavor of summer.
Inspiration for the special menu began during a two-day honey education, tasting, and immersion experience at the oceanfront Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort. During the trip, Omni chefs, NHB Chef David Guas and Omni mixologist Kim Haasarud combined their collective expertise and creativity to create an array of honey-infused cocktails and dishes that are featured in this year’s Art of Water poolside menu.
“Guests from coast-to-coast can enjoy our special honey-inspired menu filled with the sweet or savory bites of summer, while sipping ‘liquid-gold’ cocktails designed to refresh any summer palate,” said David Morgan, vice president of food and beverage at Omni Hotels & Resorts. “Honey bees create more than 300 different honey varietals in the United States alone, each with a different flavor and color profile, and some of which we have used to create this summer’s menu to offer our guests a stirring experience.”
The cocktail portion of the menu is divided into five regions — Southeast, Northeast, Midwest, Texas, and West — each featuring local and unique honey-infused cocktails. For example, travelers may find the Honey Grapefruit Crush at the Omni Homestead Resort and the Omni Grove Park Inn; the Pink Moon Shandy at the Omni San Diego Hotel; or the Honey Melon Mojito at the Omni Mount Washington Resort.
In addition to the cocktails, each participating property will feature two honey-inspired entrees, which could include Honey Roasted Chicken Salad, Ale & Honey Braised Brat, Kale Salad with orange blossom honey vinaigrette, and Lemon-Alfalfa Honey Hummus.