Velvet Bees Honey Butter:  Divine Intervention?

Neither Steve Aspinwall, nor Krista Koppinger, came from a
food production background. They didn’t set out to start a honey butter
company, selling to specialty markets. They worked in landscaping and non-profit
organizations in New Mexico. So, what happened to lead them on the path to
creating Velvet Bees Honey Butter in Maplewood, Minnesota?

The soon-to-be business partners found themselves relocating
to Krista’s hometown, near the Twin Cities, after struggling to sustain work in
the Southwest. It was at that time that Krista’s mother was toying with a particular
honey butter recipe found in a church cookbook. The cookbook had gone missing,
but the recipe remained, and after tasting it, the partners tinkered with the
idea of resurrecting it on a larger scale. After all, it was simply five
natural ingredients:  honey, butter, cream,
cane sugar and vanilla. They weren’t trained chefs, but knew they could do

After selling Velvet Bees Honey Butter at local farmer’s
markets, the partners found distribution in order to reach a wider market. The
challenge was to find a distributor that worked with refrigerated trucks, as
their honey butter is perishable and needs to remain cold. The Velvet Bees
partners approached Zuercher & Co. as a possible partner in this expanding
endeavor. At first, much of our staff wondered, “How does this fit into the
cheese market, exactly?” Then, we tried the product. Did the Earth just stop
turning? Was this delicious honey butter dropped from the powers above? All
concerns were then thrown to the wind. Our questions moved from doubt to, “How
can we make this work within the
cheese market?

Therein lies the key to its sales:  get this honey butter into people’s mouths! It
may be a simple recipe, but the results are heavenly. The butter is rich, but
melts on your tongue with a light, fluffy texture. There is no denying its
sweetness, but that is what makes it a divine pairing with salty foods such as
cheese or meats. Some ideas for using Velvet Bees Honey Butter (with cheese and

Spread on toast, English muffins, pancakes or

Dollop on pungent or salty cheeses such as
Roquefort or aged Pecorino varieties

Complement sweet, nutty or rich cheeses such as ricotta,
Gruyère or triple crème cheeses

Use as a glaze for sautéed carrots, or add to
roasted squash and sweet potatoes

Slather on fried chicken and biscuits or

Toss into warm popcorn

Stir into yogurt or oatmeal

Use as a substitute for jelly in a peanut butter
and honey butter sandwich

Mix with a bit of mustard for a glaze on ham

Stir into a hot buttered rum, or put a spin on
your hot toddy

Eat it straight from the jar with a large spoon (…don’t
judge us)

In order to enable you and your customers to be filled with
the spirit of this miraculous butter, Zuercher & Co. will be including a
sample jar with every case ordered. Let this be a warning to you, however. Once
you taste this, life will never be the same without it.