Making Wilden: Mieli Thun and the sweet art of honey
Wilden.herbals meets producers and craftsmen close to the philosophy of wilderness and today it starts from honey, an ancient and wonderful ingredient.
Andrea Paternoster of Mieli Thun is a cultural agitator in the most philosophical sense of the term. From his family he inherited birth, ideas and an undying love for beekeeping that over the years he has sublimated with a chosen team of 10 people. Essential elements of a production that stands out for its care, innovation and complete synergy with nature. His Mieli Thun are precious and this is his story.
What is your philosophy?
I believe that if what we have tried to do in recent years summarizing it in one word is Synthesis. Synthesis is the analytical result of many elements and therefore Mieli Thun is a story made from the vegetable and animal world, productive care, attention to detail and beauty, together with the pleasure of meeting. The idea of travel and then personally the opportunity to express creativity in my ideas. And this has allowed me to emancipate honey from the role of a mere health product to be used in November in some herbal tea or as a sweetener in the morning. My idea of honey is much more complex and encompasses all the beauty of the flower. Those who taste a honey taste the condensed scent of flowers. This is what we have tried to do.
What does it mean to rediscover nature today?
In my opinion, beyond the proclamations of which we are all capable and good, it is above all an exercise in humility and trying to have the necessary respect for a balance that is extremely fragile. Nature is a system that takes offense with great slowness, but which can respond and forgive with equal ferocity. Rediscovering nature is not so much having an imaginary idea of nature as if it was something external, far from us, but it is everyday behaviors, our small daily actions that allows us to have a better relationship with Mother Earth. We owe it to her and the generations to come.
Food: a childhood memory
I am not thinking of a cooked food, but of the fantastic vegetable garden that my mother kept close to home and therefore the collection of fresh vegetables. I adore vegetables in all ways, their preparation, cleaning and large mixed salads seasoned with oil and honey vinegar.
How is your product born?
Honeys are the result of the work of bees and often of good luck, so there is always an idea, a commitment to move bees, to work in a certain way with great respect, but sometimes it is the fruit of luck. When, on the other hand, I imagine processed products or preparations in which honey is an ingredient, the main element always comes from my personal taste rather than from the consumer’s need. I remember, for example, when we made vinegars. I thought about how the unexpected could have been represented. So instead of thinking about a very sweet, almost fake balsamic vinegar, we created Rosemary, whose first edition was 9.90 of acidity and 0 residual sugars, Katana in Kill Bill by Hattori Hanzo able to cut the palates, but also to refresh the dishes and be used curiously by chefs and cooking enthusiasts. So when I think of a new product, I cultivate the unexpected.
What does it mean for you to be “Sani e Selvaggi”?
Two very interesting and very beautiful words, perhaps even rarely used. For me it means reconnecting to materiality, therefore to manual skills, to the touch of nature, to being down to earth, to the idea of defining oneself as gentlemen, to the idea of being able to appreciate the everyday and above all a recovered relationship with life and with respect for life. When our spirit will be tied to the heart, our respect will be the sense of smell. A little animal.