Innovative Ingestibles at the Northside Marketplace (5 of 6)
In this blog series we will continue to learn about some of the Creatives of All Things Tasty who also happen to be vendors at an entrepreneurial co-op located at 21 Furnace Street in Akron. Today, we revisit Sweets as we explore the culinary application of honey and the creations of a pastry chef. Meet Wesley of Akron Honey Company and Chef Gina Giampietro.
When and how was your business born?
In 2013 we bought a vacant city lot and decided to start raising honeybees.
What’s the origin story behind Akron Honey?
The name was a no brainer, “Akron Honey”. But it was how we went about the honey that was so pioneering. Of course we were driven by how community centric we were. But when we saw how different the flavor was from season to season, we made a bold move based entirely on flavor. If the different seasons have different flavors, what would happen if we captured the floral imprint of different areas? So we did. We bought another vacant lot, this time on the east side of Akron. We chased flavor.
What attracted you to the world of Honey?
Being a purveyor of flavor by honey. Doing something different. Doing something that was done before, but doing it in a far more exciting way.
How do you get to be creative in your work?
We explore flavor and push the boundaries. We can go places other companies (honey companies) won’t go.
What inspires you to create your products?
Putting our own spin on the honey game.
Which product are you most proud of?
I’m proud of where we’ve arrived. We have a habanero honey, and a bourbon honey that we will be launching soon.
In what ways were you creative as a child?
I loved building with Legos. I also recall gathering scraps to make things, like a kite.
Do you pursue any artistic hobbies?
I’m a musician.
What’s next for Akron Honey?
Well, our family just decided that it was time for me to leave my full-time job and develop Akron Honey as a full-time brand. So we will be noticeably going in harder and smarter than ever.
Where do you see yourself in five years?
Finally cracking the code for our business. Insanely strong online business, extraordinary and devastatingly engaging content, and finally hitting our first million-dollar revenue year.
How do you plan on expanding your business?
We will center it on what our users want, and delivering it in the most exciting ways. We have to innovate with something quite well. For us, it will probably be in the “way” we honey and not that we carry honey. And there’s more than one way to deliver on that. We definitely will need to be exploring single serve.
How do you appreciate art locally?
I pay for it.
Continue on to Page 2 for Chef Gina Giampietro.