Posts Tagged ‘Merrill Inn’

139 Things to do in Prince Edward County

Posted by Debbie

Wednesday, August 8th, 2018
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We are always asked for travel tips. One destination in particular is Prince Edward County.  Just a short 3 hour drive from Ottawa or 2 hours from Toronto, it’s an easy daytrip or a weekend getaway.

This region, surrounded by water, is turning heads as Canada’s fastest growing wine region.  And it is not all about the wine either! “The County” has been named as Maclean’s Magazine’s Canada TOP 10 Places You’ve Got to See in 2014.  The town of Picton, Bloomfield, Milford, Wellington, Cherry Valley and all the points in between was hopping four years ago…and now there’s even more reasons to visit; our list is just a start.

Our 101 Things to Do in Prince Edward County was so popular that we’ve refreshed and updated for the second time.  To help you discover all the neat things that are going on in The County, we got the Savvy Team together (over a glass of wine of course!) & jotted down our favorite things to do in Prince Edward County.  Then we had a contest on Instagram and Facebook asking for hidden gems in the area…and went to the best source – the locals who live there for their secret spots.  Here is the list for now….and if we missed something that needs to be included, don’t be shy….Let us know by email, Facebook or Instagram.

How far down the list can you get? 

Start the car…and get rolling!

1. Visit North America’s largest dry stone bridge at Karlo Estates. And if you’re lucky, you’ll meet Spencer – one of Karlo’s winemakers – in the vineyard or in the cellar. (Spencer with a glass of his soon-to-be-released Rose, shown in photo right) 

2. Visit the Oeno Gallery at Huff Estates. Be sure to take advantage of their sculpture celebration happening from May to October 1st.

3. Want your wine tours to have a more rustic feel? Check out the historic barns at The Old ThirdClosson ChaseKarlo EstatesThe Grange of Prince Edward County and Hinterland Winery.

4. Sample amazing aperitif and dessert wines (and ports) – Sandbanks WineryHillier CreekKeint-He WineryKarlo Estates

5. Taste some of the best Canadian-made sparkling wines at HinterlandHuff Estates , Rosehall Run, Casa-Dea Lighthall Vineyards.

6. Cheese Please!  All weekend long at the Great Canadian Cheese Festival (usually in June).

7. Sample County wines at great local restos – East & MainBlumen Garden & The Hubb.

8. Nothing goes “feta” with wine than cheese, so be sure to pop into Fifth Town Artisan Cheese Co. for some artisanal cheese.

9. The infamous Toronto’s Drake Hotel  now has a County location – Drake Devonshire.  Stay over or go for dinner.

10. Indulge in poutine and milkshakes at the Dari Bar in Wellington.

11. Enjoy some great apple cider & lunch of lamb burgers The County County Cider. (Owner, Jenifer Dean, serving her famous cider, in photo right

12. Need some coffee before OR after sampling wine? Miss Lily’s Café or the Bean Counter in Picton.

13. Find your favorite mantra pinned to the wall in the Cherry Valley General Store (hint: they’re all about slowing down to smell the roses!).

14. Stop by one of many veggie stands – Laundry FarmsHagerman FarmsCherryvale Organic Farm.

15. Sit on the porch at a B&B or your weekend cottage and read Geoff Heinrick’s book A Fool & Forty Acres.

16. Pop in to the Agrarian Cheese Market & Speakeasy, featuring craft brews on tap, great ciders, wine and killer cocktails with live music on Fridays & Saturdays.

17. Take a cooking class at From the Farm.

18. Dining delight at Countylicious– twice a year, 8 restos offer a prix fixe culinary celebration for $30 or $35 plus grats & tax.

19. Get inspired by sustainable growing while you chat with Lee & Bryan at Keint-He Winery.  They’ll help you pronounce that!

20. Hop on your bike & ride the back roads while exploring Canadian history along the Loyalist Parkway.

21. Take in Terroir Wine Festival at the Crystal Palace (Early June).

22. Plan for a beach day at Sandbanks Provincial Park.

23. Feel those rhythm mc-blues as you attend the PEC Jazz Festival (Mid August).

24. Discover new music talent from across North America at The Acoustic Grill in Picton.

25. Dive into the fantastic water sports at West Lake.

26. Take a billion pix of the gorgeous stain glass windows & hang out in the hammocks at Closson Chase ….then indulge in their wines.

27. Spend a Sunday afternoon on the patio at Huff Estates Winery listening to live musical talent. (Be sure to get a taste of their new wood-fired pizza! Photo on right)

28. And for more live music, enjoy some dinner-side entertainment at East & Main Bistro.

29. Red White & Blues festival at Rosehall Run features music in the vineyard. (September)

30. Meet the dogs & owners at Three Dog Winery. Or you can practice your downward dog at their built-in yoga studio

31. Get limbered up for the Full Moon Yoga Festival (August)

32. Hear James call his Chardonnay vines ‘Bella’ at Long Dog Winery.

33. Stock up on your picnic goodies at Chef Michael Hoy’s Weekend Market at 106 Bridge Street in Picton.

34. Start your day “sunny side up” with bacon & eggs at Picton Harbour Inn. Declared by Grapevine Magazing as the top breakfast joint in PEC.

35. Harvest parties at Sandbanks WineryHalf Moon Bay Winery Broken Stone are fun for the entire family.

36. Book a getaway room at The ManseNewsroom SuitesThe Inn at Huff EstatesMerrill Inn or the Cottage at Angeline’s.

37. Take an early morning walk on the ‘secret’ beach (at the bottom of Cold Creek Road).

38. Go apple picking at Campbell’s Orchards.

39. …or cool off with ice cream at Slickers.

40. Did you know that Hinterland Vineyards has peach slushies for the kids?

41. Visit the old-time school house at the Ameliasburgh Historical Museum.

42. Drinks & Dinner at Merrill Inn – guaranteed delicious!

43. What the heck is Wassail?  Ask around about this pre-Christmas festival where you sing for your drink.

44. Do a County Chardonnay-a-thon trying every Chard you can find.  Be sure not to miss Lighthall, Stanners, Exultet, RosehallKarlo….is just a start.

45. Pull a pint of Pumpkin Ale at Barley Days Brewing Co.

46. Maple in the County is a great spring weekend getaway

47. Check out the cideries that are popping up – 401 Cider Company, Apple Falls Cider, Clafeld Cider House, Kings Mill (in Stirling – near PEC), County Cider Co, and The Hard Way (in Bath – near Glenora Ferry)

48. Visit the Lavender Farm when the lavender is in full bloom (June/July) or take in the lavender from across The County at the Lavender Festival

49. Chat with Pat at Del-Gatto Estates .…where he lives la dolce vita!

50. What was that on the barn?  A Barn Quilt!  It’s a THING in The County & there are over a 100 of them.

51. They say one person’s trash is another’s treasure, so why not start your hunt at the many famous antique stores in Prince Edward County.

52. Discover a lost world of treasures at the County Spring and Fall Antique Show & Sale

53. Follow the Arts Trail & meet incredibly talented artists along the way.

54. In the summer, sip Rose wines as you tour around the Wine Trail – see how they all are different – different grapes used, hues of pink…and tastes!

55. Catch a movie at the Regent Theatre.

56. Visit the gallery at Small Pond Arts to see Milé Murtanovski’s paintings made with wine. The gallery recently reopened so be sure to make an appointment!

57. Unwind one of the few classic drive-in movie theatres in Ontario: Mustang Drive-In

58. Take a break for wine touring & leisurely shop on Bloomfield or Wellington Main Streets.

59. Meet the newest cider maker in town – Ryan Monkman.  In his ‘spare time’ he works for 8…yes eight!…other cideries to help them make world class hard cider – the craft way.  In addition to working with others, his FieldBird Cider is truly unique.

60. How about a visit to Dead Peoples Stuff? (antique store).

61. Lunch al fresco at Casa Dea Estates Winery, Huff Estates or The Grange.

62. Go house hunting – it does not cost anything to dream!

63. It might be a wine region, yet there is a distillery – Kinsip House of Fine Spirits – that is a must visit.  Especially for their Canadian Pine Vodka, Loyalist Gin, rums & whiskies too. (Photo on right) 

64. Watch the sunset over Hubbs Winery or let Batista – the winery owner – chat your ear off until the stars come out!

65. Enjoy classical music in a small church during the Prince Edward County Music Festival (September)

66. Make annual family traditions by renting one of the many of the Sunrise Cottages.

67. Drop by Highline Mushrooms to buy fresh gourmet mushrooms.

68. Homemade donuts like my grandfather would make await at Schroedter’s Market at Huff Corners – at Hwy 62.

69. Spend an hour or two checking out City Revival – a high end consignment shop.

70. Marvel at the Lake On The Mountain– it’s mystical up there. After you have figured out the geographic phenomena, head to the pub for a drink.

71. Stop at Black River Cheese Co. in Milford to try…and buy…all kinds of cheese.  Savvy Cheese Sommelier, Vanessa Simmons recommends: Maple Cheddar & fresh curds (TIP – when you put curds in the fridge, they lose their squeak)

72. Where else can wines be as easy as Not Red, Almost Red and Not White? At Sugarbush Wines.

73. Did we already tell you about North Beach Provincial Park? You gotta go!

174. Go strawberry, raspberry or blueberry picking on the roadside – they grow wild! (July, August, September)

75. Grab some wine after your round of golf at Picton Golf CourseBarcovan Golf Club or Wellington On The Lake Golf Course.

76. Pop in & out of all of the cool shops along Picton Main Street. Treat yourself with a crepe too!

77. Bird-watching!! And don’t miss BirdHouse City. If you can’t get enough birds, be sure to check out the Prince Edward Point Bird Observatory. (Trails are open-all-year-round but banding begins August 21).

78. More bird business…count how many birds yo spot at the Prince Edward County Birding Festival (May)

79. Take the scenic route. Drive along the Loyalist Parkway – Hwy 33.  Start in Kingston or Napanee and it will meander all the way to Trenton.

80. Gorge on the farm fresh food at Seedlings (formerly The Hubb) in Bloomfield.

81. Get tickets to TASTE! (late September).

82. The December Busy Hands Craft Sale at Books and Company & Miss Lily’s Café – great sale for gifts.

83. Pop into Rosehall Run Winery for neat locally made gourmet goodies.

84. Play life size chess in the vineyard at Casa Dea Estates.

85. Stop for Italian thin crust pizza at Bergeron’s Estate Winery…and have a glass of wine or cider too!

86. Take photos of Lake Ontario with morning fog near Moonlight on the Lake B&B.

87. Buy Ontario wine…craft beer…and cider too!– not available in the LCBO – shop directly from the makers while you are in Prince Edward County

88. Get married!

89. Running and drinking…drinking and running during Terroir Run (June) or County Marathon (Registration in Sept).Terroir boots logo

90. Taste wine in a converted cheese factory that now houses Exultet Estates.

91. Rent a cottage on the water for a week and really live The County life.

92. Stop at a yard sale.

93. Take the Glenora Ferry – its free & runs every 15 mins (in the summer) or every 30 mins (in fall & winter)

94. Take a workshop at The Red Barns, an artisan’s playground, featuring blown and stained glass, pottery, and iron art.

95. Visit Canada’s first off-grid winery Redtail Vineyard.

96. Browse the books and say hello to Miss Ella Vader, the book mascot at Books & Company.

97. Spend a weekend at Claramount Inn & Spa. H.E.A.V.E.N.L.Y.

98. Stop by Huff Estates and get your picture taken with the giant steel pinecones.

99. Tired of wine tours? Satisfy your craft cravings with breweries like 555 Brewing Co. , Midtown Brewery, Prince Eddy’s and Barley Days.

100. Find out what all the buzz is about at Honey Pie Hives and Herbals!

101. Buy local ad support local farmers at the Wellington Farmer’s Market (July & August)

And there’s more …

So there is 101 Things  – all new from our last edition of this blog – but there is still some many events and activities to see and to in The County.  Let’s keep going….

102. Get belly laughs at The County’s Summer Comedy Series (May to Sept)

103. Let The County bring out your history buff with a Historic Walking Tour of Picton (July to Oct)

104. See The County from the coastline at Point Petre Wildlife Conservation Area, Sandbanks Dunes Beach, Little Bluff Conservation Area,

105. Winter is a great season for the County too so strap on those snow shoes or skies and head to one of the many trails in PEC.  For a longer trail try the Millennium Trail – a whole 49km to enjoy!

106. Have a getaway for Family Day at the Sandbanks Snow Fest and other family friendly activities

107. Get out on the water in a canoe, kayak or paddle board rented from Twin Birch Suites & Cottages or right at Sandbanks Provincial Park.

108. They say that we’ll spend 29.75% of our lives sitting so why not get outside with a hike in the County.

109. Try not to tip over while you cycle through the County’s best wineries on one of the many bike routes.

110. Put your feet up at The Ferg: a Scandinavian historic house.

111. Feel the beat at one of the areas famous music festivals like the Sandbanks Music Festival (September), Prince Edward County Chamber Music Festival (September), Prince Edward County Jazz Festival (August), PEC Fest (August) or County Pop (April).

112. Let the sweet and silvery voices take you to the south while to visit PEC’s Quinte’s Isle Bluegrass Celebration!

113. Park yourself down at a picnic table in the vineyards at Trail Estates or Traynor Family Vineyards

114. Stop and smell the roses at The County Blooms – The County’s Garden Show

115. Discover your artistic side at Art in the County (June/July) or at the old school Women’s Institute Art and Craft Sale

116. Show you national pride at Canada Day Celebrations in Wellington

117. Feel like royalty as you discover wineries in a horse drawn carriage with The County Carriage Co. (Photo on right)

118. Start practicing you lines to watch the Festival Players Theatre Company Productions

119. Get ready to rumble at the Consecon Soap Box Derby

120. Preserve the history of wine making, brewing, and more at the Ontario Fermentation Festival

121. Get your team together for the Wellington Lions Club Dragon Boat Festival (August)

122. It’s not Burning Man but you will get to camp in the woods and enjoy a line up of amazing performers for 4 whole days at the Country Jamboree (August)

123. Check out the cute pups and tractor pulls at the Picton Fair (September)

124. Get your bike in gear for the Gran Fondo (September). You can choose to a scenic ride of 50, 100 or 150 km.

125. Celebrate the harvest at Milford Fall Fair or Ameliasburgh Fall Fair

126. See The County with an artist’s eye at the PEC Studio Tour or the County Arts Fair

127. Support local at TASTE Community Grown (September) or The Makers Hand

128. Get into the Halloween spirit at Pumpkinfest (late September)

129. Come back at Christmas too for the Picton Santa Claus Parade

130. Ahoy! It’s time to set sail with the County Sailing Adventures. They can host private events or take you on a 2 or 3 hour cruises.

131. Find the plaque in Picton that explains the town’s claim to fame – where Sir John A. Macdonald grew up.

132. Be surrounded by creativity in the Rose Cottage Studio and Gifts in Picton.

133. Rest and recuperate at one of The Open Collaborative’s retreats. Choose from the “Run”, the “Activate”, the “Reset”, or the “harvest”.

134. Shop ‘til you drop at the Quinte Mall

135. Find your equilibrium on a Stand Up Paddleboard with Floating Lotus SUP

136. Get into the great outdoors with a luxury prospector tent at the Fronterra Farm Camp.

137. Find your perfect new outfit at Luna Boutique.

138. Be sure to veer off the highway and visit the newest winery in The County – Moranin Wines (just opened July 2018)

139. And last BUT definitely not the least…have breakfast, lunch and treats at Enid Grace Cafe in Wellington – go early because she makes only enough croissants, muffins, scones & cakes enough for the day.  Once your favorite treat is gone, you’ll have to wait til the next day.

 

 …and the list goes on!  

Even more tips and calendar of events can be found on Prince Edward County’s tourism web site is prince-edward-county.com

Wherever you decide to go – for a day trip, getaway or long weekend – why not work your way through this long list of things to see and do. It’s a beautiful place where you can make great memories of food, wine, great scenery – and more.  Call on our Savvy Sommeliers anytime on 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) for tips of places to visit.

Enjoy Prince Edward County!

 

 

 

 

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Top tips for your next visit to The County

Posted by Debbie

Monday, March 21st, 2016
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Prince Edward County…if you haven’t been…Start the car! Make a point to book a family vacation, play hooky and spend a long weekend or make a day of it. The County awaits!  To compile the 100+ things to do, I asked the locals and tourist for their tips. I was overwhelmed by the response….and as I write this article, more recommendations are flooding my inbox…and I will add updates to keep this list up to date.

101 Things (or more) to do in Prince Edward County

pec map for FBI have to admit that I haven’t done ALL the things on this list, but certainly plan to jump in my car soon! For starters… I always recommend getting off Highway 401 and taking the Glenora Ferry. This free ferry ride is less than 10 minutes (check the departure schedule). Mark my words, this ride will reset your pace to ‘County time’. Breathe in the fresh air, enjoy being surrounded by water and get the welcoming 2 fingered wave from the ferry driver as you arrive.

Water all around

Be baffled by the geography of Lake on the Mountain. This unique body of water is one of Ontario’s natural wonders defying geographical and geological theories. Ponder its mystery over a drink at the Miller House Café and Brasserie…you can stay overnight here too!

Parks & beaches too

water-sandbanks-FOSPrince Edward County is synonymous for Sandbanks Provincial Park (photo at right), yet, there are many more beaches to discover: Wellington Beach and Park, North Beach Provincial Park, Westlake Beach. Switch from white sand to smooth pebbles and wander along Little Bluff Beach.

 

Old barns

Check out some great old barns at The Old ThirdClosson ChaseKarlo EstatesThe Grange of Prince Edward County and Hinterland Winery.

Traveling with Savvy Company

Places to stay – oh so many!

Clarmont Inn & Spa, Merrill Inn, The Drake Devonshire, Waring House, Angeline’s Inn, The Manse Boutique Inn. All of these places have gourmet restaurants too – book a reservation to make sure you get a spot!

Where to dine

Sample County wines at many of the restos including East & MainBlumen Garden & The Agarian

Visit Angeline’s Inn in Bloomfield & pick up some of their neat postcards with historical photos of The County in years gone by. While you are there, book your reservation for lunch or dinner at The Hubb Eatery & Lounge. You will definitely make delicious memories here!

Craving a pizza? There are several wineries that have a wood oven pizza place including Norman Hardie Winery – the perfect place for pizza and a Pinot Noir (try saying that fast!)

Spend Sunday morning at the Sunday Market at 106 Bridge or brunch made by Chef Michael Hoy. And in the afternoon, enjoy live jazz & al fresco dining on the patio at Huff Estates Winery.

Cuddle baby lambs & explore forest trails to walk off the amazing meal of farm to table cuisine enjoyed at Windhover County – a 140 year old Victorian Farm that has been transformed into a boutique inn.

Take a break from gourmet meals and make your way to the Lighthouse Restaurant at the Picton Harbour Inn – a popular local hot spot for breakfast – best sausages ‘n eggs, mile high pancakes &french toast in town.

…or nibble

Top places for treats & tea: The Vic Café, The Pink Lunch Pail Bakery, Tall Poppy Café, Miss Lily’s

Hands down the best old fashioned doughnuts are at Schroedter’s Farm Market Bakery & Cafe. If you don’t have a sweet tooth, a bowl of homemade soup&sandwiches will hit the spot. There are great gluten free goodies too.

Take a break from visiting wineries and stop in to visit the Pyramid Ferments Gut Hut. A wide variety of artisan made Sauerkrauts, Kimchis and Kombuchas – all using seasonal ingredients – are made in small batches.

Have you tried Maple Cheddar from Black River Cheese Factory?

Nightlife

Think there’s no nightlife in The County? Ha! You haven’t been to the movies at Mustang Drive-In on County Road 1.

Picton’s Main street has got it all. At The Regent Theatre, check out the list of movies, live musical performances & special talks as well as the Prince Edward County Jazz Festival. While you are there, snap a selfie with Sir John A Macdonald. His statue is located in front of the Armory.

Best view in town

The locals share this secret: enjoy the view of Picton from the Millenium Lookout – access it from County Road 22

Ice cream’s finest

Cave in…have ice cream at Slickers County Ice Cream in Bloomfield, stop in at Black River Cheese Factory or the locals hot spot is Cones & Shakes in Picton

Love museums?

Here is a ‘hit list’- Mariner’s Park Museum in South Bay, Rose House Museum in Waupoos, Wellington Historical Museum, Macauly Heritage Park and Ameliasburgh Pioneer Village

Wines, beers, ciders…and more

Pop into The County Canteen– Picton’s first brew pub – stop in for a flight of craft beers. The Acoustic Grill is a great place to see local bands.

Meet the dogs & owners at Three Dog Winery. In the summer they do yoga in the vineyard (the owners that is!) and XC ski parties too.

Ever been to a speakeasy? Click here to find where X marks the spot.

Pop the cork & taste some of the best Canadian-made sparkling wines at HinterlandHuff Estates, The GrangeBy Chadsey’s Cairns Lighthall Vineyards.

County Cider tasting June 2015Calling all cider lovers! You’ll want to hit these places for hard ciders made with County grown apples: The County Cider Co. (in photo at left), Bergeron Estate Winery & Cider House, and Clafeld Fruit

Head down at harvest and join in picking grapes at Sandbanks WineryHalf Moon Bay Winery Broken Stone – something that the entire family can do.

Chat with Bryan at Keint-He Winery.  He’ll help you pronounce that!

An open invitation to everyone! Brett French – the brewer at Barley Days Brewery – gives anyone reading this an invitation to drop by to sample his beers…ask for him and he will give you the skinny on how he makes each. And County Road Beer Co. just opened, so be sure to stop in here too!

Prince Edward County is known as a wine region, yet there is a distillery – 66 Gilead – that is neat place to visit & try their Canadian Pine Vodka, Loyalist Gin, rums & whiskies too.

Want some exercise? 

A local favorite bike ride is along Big Island Road following the beach on the northeast shore of Prince Edward County as well as along the Loyalist Parkway (Highway 33).

Drive or bike along the Barn Quilt Trail. There are over 100 barnswith painted quilts – neat!

Get running! The day after the annual Terroir Wine & Farmers Market Festival, get your shoes on to do the 10 km Terroir Run that winds through wineries along the way. The Wellington Women’s Half Marathon in June (complete with firemen handing out water along the route!) In October, The County Marathon is a great way to explore the backroads.

…and there is still more!

Lavender Farm by DT June 7 2015See a sea of purple at the Prince Edward County Lavender Farm. Tip: plan to visit the Lavender Festival or stop in when the plants are in bloom in mid to late June. Take photos in the gardens, learn how lavender is harvested & the oil is made. If you are lucky – stay at the B&B there too.

Play life size chess in the vineyard at Casa Dea Estates Winery.

The locals raved about –Birdhouse City with over 100 birdhouses of reproductions of historic buildings, whimsical designs & other recognizable structures.

A sign that will make you laugh as you drive by:Dead People’s Stuff Antiques.

Lose yourself flipping through neat books at Books & Company or the cool consignment shop – City Revival – on Main Street in Picton.

 

OenoGalleryToo many galleries to visit in one weekend! Some to make sure to visit: Oeno Gallery (photo at right courtesy of Oeno Gallery) Huff Estates Winery, Love Nest Studios. Follow the Arts Trail to discover incredible local artists along the way.

Crazy about airplanes? Lock-Sloy (aka Camp Picton) is one of Canada’s last intact 1940 British Commonwealth Air Training sites. Driving through here, it is easy to imagine what this place was like in the hay day.

If lighthouses are your ‘thing’, then make sure to visit Point Petre and South Bay Lighthouse – bring some local wine & cheese to have a picnic.

If vintage cars are your ‘thing’, then plan your trip to Prince Edward County to take in the Street Meet in early August. It is a blast reliving the past at this annual car show with over 200 classic cars come from all corners of Ontario and Quebec.

Karlo bridgeVisit North America’s largest dry stone bridge (in photo at right) at Karlo Estates – made by the winery owner & friends. A great place for a family photo or a picnic.

Sit on the porch at a B&B or your weekend cottage and read Geoff Heinrick’s book A Fool & Forty Acres all about the hard work of getting a vineyard planted in The County.

Take a cooking class at From the Farm. Tell Cynthia that we say hi!

Festivals galore

wine festivalFestivals that will give you a taste of The County: Maple in the County in March, then in May – Terroir where winemakers and artisan food producers are all under one roof. The Great Canadian Cheese Festival in June is a weekend of 100% Canadian artisan cheese (and wine and beer too).

TASTE – Community Grown in September (in photo at left) celebrates the harvest with local wines, ciders and farm fresh goodies. Join the fun at Wassail – a pre-Christmas festival where you sing for your drink. Check www.visitthecounty.ca for a comprehensive calendar.

Dining delight – Countylicious – twice a year, 8 restos offer a prix fixe culinary celebration for $30 or $35 plus grats & tax.

Red White & Blues festival at Rosehall Run features music in the vineyard.

PosterCool Collectibles

Collect a couple or all 8 of the cool County Posters with neat illustrations of all corners of Prince Edward County to remind you of the fun discoveries you had on your County getaway (photo attached –credit illustration by Marc Keelan-Bishop).

Sisters Jane Rutter & Susan Felton have brought pieces of history & heritage memorabilia back to life at the cool shop called Cannery Row.

Local produce abounds

In the summer, stop by one of many veggie stands – Laundry FarmsHagerman FarmsCherryvale Organic Farm & Vicki’s Veggies.

Stop in at Highline to grab a box of their gourmet mushrooms.

Only have time for a quick visit?

Go to the brand new The Local Store where all kinds of County treasures, artists & food stuffs are under one roof…in a heritage Loyalist barn.

Send us your tips on PEC!

As you can see, there are oodles of things to do in The County. While only 2 hours from Toronto or 3 hours from Ottawa, it is a place where you can really switch off! In fact, there are over 1000 places where you will probably lose cell phone reception.

Have fun as you discover Prince Edward County & email us with your favorite spots!
Debbie

 

Can’t get away?  Don’t worry….The County is coming to Ottawa!

Prep for your road trip by attending County in the Capital. Meet the makers from 20+ wineries, cideries, breweries &artisan food producers – all from The County. This is a unique opportunity to Taste & Buy your new favorites

County in the Capital picEvent Details:

Date: Wednesday April 20th
Time: 7 to 9pm
Place: Ottawa City Hall
Entry: Advance Tickets only: $55 (bring a friend for $5)
www.countycomes2ottawa.eventbrite.ca

This article was written by Savvy Sommelier Debbie Trenholm & will be featured in Ottawa Life Magazine on May 22.

 

 

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101 Things to do in Prince Edward County

Posted by Debbie

Friday, October 3rd, 2014
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Where are you going this Long Weekend? We are always asked for travel tips. One destination we are frequently asked about is Prince Edward County.  Just a short 3 hour drive from Ottawa or 2 hours from Toronto, you can go for the day or a weekend getaway.

Stanners Vineyard vinesThis region, surrounded by water, is turning heads as Canada’s fastest growing wine region.  And it is not all about the wine either! The County has been named as Maclean’s Magazine’s Canada TOP 10 Places You’ve Got to See in 2014.

To help you discover all the neat things that are going on in The County, we got the Savvy Team together (over a glass of wine of course!) & jotted down 101 of our favorite (and there are still many more) things to do in Prince Edward County.

How far down the list can you get?  Do you know about other fun things to see & do in PEC that we can add to our list?

101 Things to Do in Prince Edward County Wine Country

 

1. Visit North America’s largest dry stone bridge at Karlo Estates.

2. Visit the Oeno Gallery at Huff Estates.

3. Do the Creepy Corn Maze (Oct).

4. Eat some freshly baked pizza at Norman Hardie’s.

5. Check out some great old barns at The Old Third, Closson Chase, Karlo Estates, The Grange of Prince Edward County and Hinterland Winery.

6. Sample amazing aperitif and dessert wines (and ports) – Sandbanks Winery, Hillier Creek, Keint-He Winery, Karlo Estates

wine_tasting_sparkling7. Taste some of the best Canadian-made sparkling wines at Hinterland, Huff Estates, The Grange, By Chadsey’s Cairns & Lighthall Vineyards.

8. Cheese Please!  All weekend long at the Great Canadian Cheese Festival (June).

9. Sample County wines at great local restos – East & Main, Blumen Garden & The Hubb.

10. Buy some artisan cheese to go with your wine at Fifth Town Artisan Cheese Co.

11. Toronto’s Drake Hotel now has a County location – Drake Devonshire.  Stay over or go for dinner.

12. Indulge in poutine and milkshakes at the Dari Bar in Wellington.

13. Enjoy some great apple cider & lunch of lamb burgers The County County Cider.

14. Need some coffee after sampling wine? Miss Lily’s Café or the Bean Counter in Picton.

15. Find your favorite mantra pinned to the wall in the Cherry Valley General Store (hint: they’re all about slowing down to smell the roses!).

16. Stop by one of many veggie stands – Laundry Farms, Hagerman Farms, Cherryvale Organic Farm.

17. Sit on the porch at a B&B or your weekend cottage and read Geoff Heinrick’s book A Fool & Forty Acres.

18. Pop in to the Agrarian Cheese Market & Speakeasy, featuring craft brews on tap, great ciders, wine and killer cocktails with live music on Fridays & Saturdays.

19. Take a cooking class at From the Farm.

20. Dining delight – Countylicious – twice a year, 8 restos offer a prix fixe culinary celebration for $30 or $35 plus grats & tax.

21. Chat with Bryan at Keint-He Winery.  He’ll help you pronounce that!

22. Get on your bike & ride the backroads or along the Loyalist Parkway.

Terroir wine festival23. Take in Terroir Wine Festival at the Crystal Palace (May).

24. Plan for a beach day at Sandbanks Provincial Park.

25. Attend the PEC Jazz Festival (summer).

26. Discover new local music talent at The Acoustic Grill in Picton.

27. Slide down the dunes at West Lake.

28. Harvest grapes with Norman Hardie & celebrate afterwards with a pig roast & bbq (fall).

29. Take a billion pix of the gorgeous gardens at Closson Chase then indulge in their wines.

30. Spend a Sunday afternoon on the patio at Huff Estates Winery listening to live jazz.

31. Red White & Blues festival at Rosehall Run features music in the vineyard.

32. Meet the dogs & owners at Three Dog Winery.

33. Get lost on the back roads.

34. Hear James call his Chardonnay vines ‘Bella’ at Long Dog Winery.

35. Stock up on your picnic goodies at Chef Michael Hoy’s Weekend Market at 106 Bridge Street in Picton.

36. Best bacon & eggs in town are at Picton Harbour Inn.

Debbie at 2012 harvest37. Harvest parties at Sandbanks Winery, Half Moon Bay Winery & Broken Stone are fun for the entire family. Here I am (photo at right) picking grapes at last year’s harvest – boy that was hard work!

38. Book a room at The Manse, Newsroom Suites, The Inn at Huff Estates, Merrill Inn or the cottage at Angeline’s.

39. Take an early morning walk on the ‘secret’ beach (at the bottom of Cold Creek Road).

40. Ice cream at Slickers.

41. Go apple picking at Campbell’s Orchards.

42. Sparkling wine awaits at Hinterland Vineyards – and peach slushies for the kids.

43. Visit the old-time school house at the Ameliasburgh Historical Museum.

44. Drinks & Dinner at Merrill Inn –guaranteed delicious!

45. What the heck is Wassail?  Ask around about this pre-Christmas festival where you sing for your drink. Does this photo get you thinking about Christmas?

46. Do a County Chardonnay-a-thon trying every Chard you can find.  Be sure not to miss Lighthall, Stanners, Exultet, Rosehall, Karlo….is just a start.

maple_web_logo47. Pull a pint of Pumpkin Ale at Barley Days Brewing Co.

48. Maple in the County is a great spring getaway

49. All aboard!  Stop in at the red caboose at 33 Vines Winery – it is their tasting room.

50. Visit the Lavender Farm when the lavender is in full bloom (June).

51. Chat with Pat at Del-Gatto Estates…where he lives la dolce vita!

52. Kick back & chillax in a Muskoka chair with a glass of Sandbanks wine…in their vineyard (must trys – Cabernet Franc Reserve, Baco Noir, Marchel Foch).

53. Go antiquing.

artstrail-bluesign54. Follow the Arts Trail & meet incredible artists along the way.

55. In the summer, sip Rose wines around the Wine Trail – see how they all are different – different grapes used, hues of pink…and tastes!

56. Catch a movie at the Regent Theatre.

57. Visit the gallery at Small Pond Arts to see Milé Murtanovski’s paintings made with wine.

58. Unwind one of the few classic drive-in movie theatres in Ontario: Mustang Drive-In

59. Take a break for wine touring & leisurely shop on Bloomfield Main Street.

60. Six Barrels for Six Chefs at Huff Estates Winery (June).

61. Get your heirloom tomatoes and lots of other fresh from the farm veggies at Vicki’s Veggies

62. How about a visit to Dead Peoples Stuff? (antique store).

63. Enjoy heaven in a glass with a sip of VanAlstine White Port at Karlo Estates.

64. Lunch al fresco at Casa Dea Estates Winery, Huff Estates, The Grange or Norman Hardie Winery.

65. Go house hunting – it does not cost anything to dream!

66. It might be a wine region, yet there is a distillery – 66 Gilead – that is a must visit.  Especially for their Canadian Pine Vodka, Loyalist Gin, rums & whiskies too.

67. Watch the sunset at North Beach.

68. Enjoy incredible classical music in a small church during the Prince Edward County Music Festival (September)

69. Make annual family traditions by renting one of the many of the Sunrise cottages.

70. Drop by Highline mushrooms to buy fresh gourmet mushrooms.

71. Homemade donuts like my grandfather would make await at Schroedter’s Market on Hwy 62.

72. Spend an hour or two checking out City Revival – a high end consignment shop.

73. Be marvelled by Lake On The Mountain – it’s mystical up there.

Premium Goat Milk Cheddar, Back Forty Artisan Cheese Co. and Black River Cheese Company74. Stop at Black River Cheese Co in Milford to try…and buy…all kinds of cheese.  Savvy Cheese Sommelier, Vanessa Simmons recommends: Maple Cheddar & fresh curds (TIP – when you put curds in the fridge, they lose their squeak)

75. Where else can wines be as easy as Not Red, Almost Red and Not White? At Sugarbush Wines.

76. Ride the waves at North Beach Provincial Park.

77. Go strawberry, raspberry or blueberry picking on the roadside – they grow wild!

78. Grab some wine after your round of golf at Picton Golf Course, Barcovan Golf Club or Wellington On The Lake Golf Course.

79. Pop in & out of all of the cool shops along Picton Main Street.

80. Bird-watching!! And don’t miss BirdHouse City.

81. Take the scenic route. Drive along the Loyalist Parkway – Hwy 33.  Start in Kingston or Napanee and it will meander all the way to Trenton.

82. Order everything on the chalkboard at The Hubb Restaurant in Bloomfield.

83. TASTE! at the Crystal Palace (late September).

84. Have afternoon tea or a treat at Tall Poppy Café in Wellington.

85. The December Busy Hands Craft Sale at Books and Company & Miss Lily’s Café, hosted by Vicki’s Veggies – great sale for gifts.

86. Pop into Greer Road Grocer at Rosehall Run Winery for neat locally made gourmet goodies.

87. Play life size chess in the vineyard at Casa Dea Estates.

88. Stop for Italian thin crust pizza at Bergeron’s Estate Winery…and have a glass of wine too!

89. Take photos of Lake Ontario with morning fog near Moonlight on the Lake B&B.

90. Buy Ontario wine – and beer! – not available in the LCBO – shop directly at the wineries & brewery in Prince Edward County!

91. Get married!

92. Running and drinking…drinking and running during Terroir Run (June) or county Marathon (Oct).

93. Taste wine in a converted cheese factory that now houses Exultet Estates.

94. Rent a cottage on the water for a week and really live The County life.

95. Stop at a garage sale.

96. Take the free Glenora Ferry.

97. Take a workshop at The Red Barns, an artisan’s playground, featuring blown and stained glass, pottery, and iron art.

98. Visit Canada’s first off-grid winery Redtail Vineyard.

99. Browse the books and say hello to Miss Ella Vader, the new book mascot at Books & Company.

100. Spend a weekend at Claramount Inn & Spa. Heavenly.

101. Stop by Huff Estates and get your picture taken with the giant steel pinecones.

…and the list goes on!   Even more tips and calendar of events can be found on Prince Edward County’s tourism web site is prince-edward-county.com

 

Wherever you decide to go this Long Weekend…or anytime, why not work your way through this long list of things to see and do in Prince Edward County. It’s a beautiful place where you can make great memories of food, wine, great scenery – and more.  Call on our Savvy Sommeliers anytime on 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) for tips of places to visit.

Enjoy Prince Edward County!
Debbie

 

 

 

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‘Pinot geek & a lover of soil’ – winemaker at Keint-He

Posted by Patti

Wednesday, July 17th, 2013
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Savvy Selections wine of the month club
Featuring Keint-He Vineyard
–  July 2013 –

 

We often travel great distances to discover new wine regions; to taste and experience new and exciting wines. And yet 270km from Ottawa and 240km from Toronto we find Prince Edward County (PEC) on the shores of Lake Ontario. This emerging region, designated as a VQA wine region in 2007, offers a tremendous variety of wines from a new breed of wine makers who believe in collaboration and in crafting wines in both new and exciting ways but ones based on traditions from regions long experienced in wine making. I find great passion when speaking to these winemakers and owners about what it is they do. And, passion creates wonderful wines.

The soils and climate of PEC lend themselves to many of the viticulture practices and varietals of Burgundy, France. Amongst those wineries you will find Keint-He Winery & Vineyards.  This winery sits just past Wellington on the Loyalist Parkway – also known as Highway 33 – as it winds its way along the windy shores of Lake Ontario.

Keint-He (pronounced Kent-hay) is the native word for one of the four Seneca villages located in PEC region. The Seneca’s were one of the five tribes of the Iroquois. Keint-He was later francocized into Quinte and used in English names such as the Bay of Quinte.

Like father, like son

Ron Rogers, a retired banker, purchased two vineyard properties in 2006. The winery has evolved from creating their first vintage in 2007 in a small shed on the property, to their current winery producing approximately 3,000 cases with an inviting tasting room & facility. As the expression goes ‘like father, like son’, Ron’s son Bryan became the winery’s General Manager. “Dad keeps us grounded,” Bryan states with a smile.

Growth and expansion at the winery will increase their yield to between 8,000 and 10,000 cases over the next few years. Coming this year are two 5000 liter oak      fermenters. These will permit Keint-he to both ferment and age their Pinot Noir in the same vessel. Another innovation that keeps Keint-He moving forward.

In your Savvy Selections, you will find:

Voyageur Vidal VQA 2012 – the exceptional weather in 2012 creates this stunning white wine.

Voyageur Rose VQA 2011 –  a serious twist on Rosé…not pink at all!

Portage Pinot Noir VQA 2011an elegant, well defined Pinot

OPTIONAL WINES:  Try this crowd pleaser with great body and staying power Chardonnay VQA 2009 or else a very unique and high-scoring wine from The County Pineaux Sauvage VQA 2008. If you asked me to add either of these to your wine list this month … you are in for a treat!

Keint-He makes such a small amount of wine that none are at the LCBO. If you would like additional bottles of your new Keint-He favourite wine, call me on 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926) or send an email to me on debbie@savvycompany.ca to arrange an additional delivery. It is always my pleasure to introduce you to wonderful new Ontario wines!

Cheers & Enjoy,

Debbie & Savvy Team


Introducing…
Keint-He Winery & Vineyards

Presented by Savvy Sommelier Patricia Petty

 

You have been introduced to Ron Rogers, he is the man behind Keint-He Winery and Vineyards…. now let’s meet the rest of the Keint-He team – they certainly are a tight team!

Wine is way better than mating frogs!

Bryan Rogers is the General Manager and until recently the main sales force of the team. Bryan started out his early career in the sciences and in communications. When I first met him about a year ago he told me that he decided making wine was way more interesting than the mating habits of frogs. His previous “life” gives him his two mentors – Charles Darwin and David Suzuki.

In a ‘cellar conversation’ Bryan (left) told me that he loves the fact that Keint-He took shape just 8 months prior to the County getting its “Designated Viticulture Area (VQA)” status. “Call me a softy, but I feel there is some romance and excitement in starting something and not really knowing where it will lead you. PEC is a new frontier for viticulture and winemaking. There is a real sense of, “we’re all in this together” amongst all the different wineries…of which there are now almost 40! Even the largest winery in PEC is a boutique producer, so we’re all a part of the same fraternity”.

For Bryan, his favorite part of the season is harvest. “I like it when the grapes have all been picked and processed. It’s an especially tiresome point in the season for the whole team. At that point you can look across the cellar and say quite literally, these are the fruits of our labor. And then you sleep for three days”.

From New Zealand to Niagara to The County…

Ross Wise – the winemaker – is the new kid on the block having joined the team in December 2012. He comes from Flatrock Cellars in Niagara via New Zealand where he earned a degree in oenology and then learned his craft. During his time at Felton Road in Central Otago, Ross became as he puts it “a Pinot geek and a lover of soil”. When I asked him what excites him about being in The County he explained, “when I walk between the rows, kick the soil and see the rocks, I get excited”. Ross will tell you he “really likes veraison, the stage of the season when the grapes are changing color. Most of the vineyard work is done at this stage, and the berries (winespeak for grapes) are starting to develop their flavors.  It is a waiting stage, with anticipation for the vintage ahead”.

Both Bryan and Ross see Prince Edward County as having the best potential to grow Pinot Noir grapes in Ontario. The reason? Bryan will initially give you a one-word answer, limestone. And, in two words, limestone and PEC’s island microclimate. From the winemaker’s perspective, Ross explains, “our Pinot Noir grapes are ripening about two weeks later than they are in Niagara – and this is a distinctive advantage.  It means that the grapes are ripening in cooler temperatures and accumulating sugars slower and the flavors and aromatics are also developing slowly.  This is also the reason for the great acidity in PEC Pinot Noir.  Pinot Noir likes a large diurnal range of temperatures (winespeak for warm days and cool nights) and PEC delivers this during peak ripening times”.

Hardest farming – ever!

The rest of Keint-He team is made up of Mark Gilbert and Caitlin Prior.  Mark is a “County Boy” who comes from a farming family and has been with Keint-He since the beginning. Mark states, “This is the hardest farming he’s ever done”. He constantly worries about the weather but then that is so much a part of what he does. He “lives” in the vineyards from spring through to harvest. Even though he is more of a beer drinker he will admit to enjoying a glass of Keint-He Chardonnay.

More than just wine at this winery…dinner, music & more

Caitlin is the Retail Manager and Special Events Coordinator. She comes from Foreign Affair Winery in Niagara. She is a pro at WOW-ing visitors with all that Keint-He has to offer.

Caitlin has put together an exciting list of events, which she hopes will give visitors a reason to sit and enjoy the winery this summer. There is live music at the winery most weekends throughout the summer; in early September there will be the 1st Annual BBQ; the winery will be hosting a couple of Winemaker’s Dinners throughout the season and, as always there will be Keint-He’s wines to sip, savor and enjoy on the front patio. And, along with that wine you can enjoy foods this summer prepared by the Agrarian Restaurant in Bloomfield, another venture of Patricia and Bryan Rogers. Check out the Keint-He website for dates and times.

They may be small, but they have major innovations!

Growth and expansion at the winery will increase their yield to between 8 and 10,000 bottles over the next few years. Coming this year is a new oak fermentation system that will allow them to both ferment and age both the Pinot Noirs in the same vessel. I have never heard of such a thing – that in itself is a reason to put Keint-He on your list of places to visit this summer.

Cheers & enjoy your Savvy Selections!

 

 

~ SAVVY SOMMELIER TASTING NOTES ~

Voyageur Vidal VQA 2012   $17.00

“The 2012 Vidal is a wine that pretty much made itself. Right from the day it was harvested it was so naturally balanced, and took very little winemaker effort at all.  It’s nice when that happens” – Ross, Keint-He`s winemaker.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Our Sommeliers found this wine full of ripe fruit flavors. Perfumed with flower blossoms of orange and a hint of vanilla, it was described as “a big fruit salad in a glass”. This wine had aromas and flavors of pear, peach and nectarines, green apple and grapefruit. The flavors of pineapple, kiwi and juicy fruit gum played on the palate. The finish was long, smooth and refreshing.

This is a refreshing wine, perfect for a warm summer evening. Simply put…DELICIOUS!

 Suggested Food Pairing: Pork tenderloin with an orange glaze (recipe follows) or white fish grilled with a mango/pear salsa. At Keint-He, the team favorite is a beet and goat cheese salad. Or serve this wine with a summer pear tart with a dollop of sweetened mascarpone cream – it would pair beautifully on the other end of dinner.

Voyageur Rosé VQA 2011 $15.00

“Not your average Rosé wine!” Savvy Sommelier Debbie commented during the tasting panel. A serious twist on Rosé as it is a blend of Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and St. Laurent grapes – all sourced from Keint-He`s Foxtail Vineyards. The individual wines were then aged in French oak barrels for 10 months, then blended and bottled in the winter of 2013.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: The color reminded us of watermelon or rhubarb. The nose was a complex blend of floral notes, cinnamon heart candy, vanilla, smoke, tart red cherries, rhubarb and dried fruits. Tastes of raspberry, pink grapefruit and rhubarb appear on the palate and a slight earthiness and oak play out in the background.

Suggested Food Pairing:  We suggest trying this with a watermelon and olive salad (recipe follows) or salmon served along side a warm grilled salad.

Portage Pinot Noir VQA 2011 $25.00

This is a blend of grapes from three of Keint-He’s vineyards – Closson, Benway and Foxtail. Each portion was aged separately in French oak for 12 months then blended together to make this fine Pinot.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: A beautiful light red in color, this wine shows aromas of raspberries, cherries, vanilla, dried fruits of raisins and dates. “It reminds me of bunch of long stemmed red roses” one of our Sommeliers commented. It is warm and velvety on the palate with light tannins. A smooth mouth feel, with flavors of raspberry, cherry, rhubarb & hints of brown sugar or molasses sweetness and earthy mushroom notes hiding in the background.

Suggested Food Pairing: Like so many Pinot Noirs, this wine would pair beautifully with salmon on the grill, grilled portobello mushrooms or perhaps if you are adventuresome, a seared and pan roasted duck breast. Chef Michael Sullivan of the Merrill Inn in Picton has graciously given us a recipe for his version of this dish. He likes to serve it with a rosti (or shredded potato cake) and fresh locally sourced vegetables – French green beans, peas, asparagus or cauliflower in season.

 

OPTIONAL WINES  – We couldn’t resist suggesting these Keint-He wines!

Chardonnay VQA 2009  $20.00

This wine is an easy drinking crowd pleaser; priced at an excellent entry point into Keint-He’s premium wine offerings.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: This wine is bright, straw-hued with a slight green tinge. On the nose we find creamy notes of butter, maple, fresh peach, pears and yellow plums and a mix of herbs – spearmint & thyme. Medium bodied, this wine shows some of the stone and minerality the county is known for and has good length and staying power.

Suggested Food Pairing: Pair this wine with steamed mussels and herbs; grilled shrimp or seared scallops; and/or a quinoa salad with roasted vegetables. This is a great easy drinking wine that would be perfect for sipping on the patio with a simple cheese plate…think Camembert or a young Riopelle.

 

Pineaux Sauvage – Botrytis Affected Pinot Noir VQA 2008  $25.00 (375ml bottle)

A first for Prince Edward County! You may have heard the saying that wine is made in the vineyard…this is a good example. The key tool here is mould. Yes mould! Known by winemakers as Botrytis. It occurs only during damp, misty mornings and warm, dry afternoons. As the mould grows on the bunches of Pinot Noir grapes, it breaks down the thin skins & extracts the natural water in the grapes, leaving shriveled bunches. When harvested, although not appealing looking, the wine is extra concentrated with nectar. The result is a special wine known as Noble Rot.

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Brown sugar in color, with aromas that reminded us of Sherry or Cognac combined with the heart-warming notes of raisin butter tarts. When this delicious nectar hits your lips, tastes of marmalade, warm spices with a Cognac like alcohol burn. It is dry, has a light finish and is not too high in alcohol (12.6%).

Suggested Food Pairing: Surprisingly, this is not a sweet dessert wine. Rather a wine that can be served as an aperitif or to unwind after a meal. Do, as the French do & serve with Foie Gras, cheese & charcuterie or with cakes – gingerbread or rum cake would be fantastic!

 

~RECIPES TO ENJOY WITH YOUR SAVVY SELECTIONS~

 

With Keint-He Voyageur Vidal VQA 2012 …

Pork Tenderloin with Burnt Orange and Sage Sauce

From LCBO Food & Drink, Summer 2009
By Marilyn Bentz-Crowley
Serves 4

Ingredients

4 centre-cut pork chops cut 1 inch (2.5 cm) thick or
2 large pork tenderloins, butterflied (this cut was used when testing)
1 tbsp (15 mL) peanut or canola oil
Several whole sage leaves

For Sauce

2 large oranges
1⁄4 cup (50 mL) granulated sugar
1⁄4 cup (50 mL) water
1 cup (250 mL) chicken broth or stock
2 tbsp (25 mL) cider vinegar
2 tbsp (25 mL) all-purpose flour
4 large fresh sage leaves, chopped
1⁄4 to 1⁄2 tsp (1 to 2 mL) salt
Several grindings of black pepper
2 tbsp (25 mL) butter, softened

Method

To make sauce, zest oranges; set aside. Then cut away orange skin & segment orange by cutting away internal membranes. Set aside segments and juice squeezed from membranes.

Combine sugar and water in a heavy bottom medium skillet. Shaking pan occasionally, cook over medium heat for 7 to 9 minutes or until sugar caramelizes. Deglaze with broth stirred with vinegar, juice from orange segments and flour. Bring to a boil for 2 to 3 minutes or until thickened.

Then stir in chopped sage, salt, pepper and a couple pinches of zest. Using a small whisk to pick up butter, rapidly whisk into sauce. Remove from heat; keep warm while grilling pork.

Rub pork with oil; lightly season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Preheat barbecue to hot.  Grill for 6 minutes per side for chops or until internal temperature for medium doneness is 150°F (65°C) for butterflied tenderloin.

Place the pork, slicing tenderloin if using, on warmed serving plates. Add reserved orange segments on top of pork. Nap with sauce; garnish with orange zest and sage leaves. Serve right away with grilled zucchini and seared rapini or spinach. Or serve this with the beet and goat cheese salad that Keint-He suggests. We were glad we did!
 

With Keint-He Voyageur Rosé VQA 2011 …

Watermelon & Black Olive Salad

From Wish Magazine

 

Ingredients

For Salad

4 cups seedless watermelon cut in ½ inch cubes
1/3 cup chopped black olives
1/3 cup chopped green onions
Place all ingredients in a large salad bowl & set aside.

 

For Vinaigrette

1 tablespoon garam marsala*
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
¼ cup olive oil

* garam marsala: An East Indian spice mixture that generally includes coriander seed, black pepper, cumin, cardamom, turmeric, nutmeg, cloves & cinnamon. Purchase a package of this spice mixture at an Indian grocery or health food store. 

Method

Mix together all ingredients for vinaigrette.  Gently mix in vinaigrette to cover watermelon.  Chill until ready to serve

TIP: this can be served as skewers of watermelon instead of a salad.  Make as a salad & marinate in vinaigrette for an hour, then thread onto skewers alternating periodically with whole black olives.  Either way, this dish has a WOW factor!

With Keint-He Portage Pinot Noir VQA 2011…

Merrill Inn Seared Duck Breast with Dried Blueberry Jus


Chef Michael Sullivan of the Merrill Inn in Picton
This is one of the most popular dishes at the Inn’s highly acclaimed restaurant

Ingredients

1 Mallard or Muscovy Duck Breast, 450g
4 oz. Roasted Chicken Demi-glaze Jus
3 tablespoons dried blueberries

 

 

 

Method

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Trim some of the fat from the duck breast, leaving about ¼” on. Trim any sinew or silver skin from the meat. Season with salt and pepper.

Using a small frying pan, turn heat to medium high. As Chef Sullivan says, the secret is in a searing hot pan! Place breast in pan, skin side down. Fry for several minutes, until fat is slightly rendered and browning.

Place pan with breast in the oven, still skin side down and roast for 7 minutes.

Remove from oven, cast off rendered fat. Turn the breast over in the hot pan and let rest for 1 minute (skin side up). After a minute, remove the breast from the pan and let rest.

While the duck is resting add blueberries and chicken Demi-glaze to the pan. Over high heat reduce to a sauce like consistency (about ½). Not too runny or too thick.

Before serving, warm duck breast in the oven. Slice thinly against the grain, which runs length-wise down the breast. Fan out on plate, pour sauce over and serve.

This method is per duck breast so multipy by the number of guests you are serving.

Serve with local in-season vegetables for this simple but memorable dish.

 

Enjoy your Savvy Selections!

 

 

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Discovering Prince Edward County

Posted by Debbie

Thursday, October 22nd, 2009
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On a recent weekend visit to Prince Edward County, I had the opportunity to experience some of the great accommodations, food and wine.  I was amazed and impressed how vibrantly this region has grown since my last visit.  

Our visit started with our arrival at the historic Merrill Inn.  Located on a county road leading to the Loyalist route, the Merrill Inn is a historic property which was built in 1878 and is notable for its attractive gingerbread-trimmed gables.  Each of the rooms is beautifully appointed with attractive linens, period antiques and updated fittings.

The aroma of fresh-baked cookies led us toward the reception at the rear of the Inn.  We were greeted by owner and innkeeper Edward Shubert, who was a constant presence throughout our short stay.  After visiting some of the local attractions, we headed back to the Inn for a gourmet dinner prepared by chef Michael Sullivan.  The Inn’s restaurant is located in a cosy room with a view to the courtyard and herb garden.  The chef uses local ingredients wherever possible, and the wine list is replete with County wines.  We enjoyed a range of delightful appetizers (beet and orange salad, and delicious crab cakes), followed by main courses (such as fresh Ontario pickerel or shrimp and scallop saffron risotto) which were a feast for the eyes and the palate.  And the desserts we chose (chocolate pudding and apple tarte tatin) were superb.  Edward, the ever-attentive host, orchestrated the excellent service.

Our overnight stay was quiet and restful.  Breakfast the next morning included a wide variety of fresh baked breads and pastries, fruit, yogurt and cereal, as well as French toast and sausages for those who couldn’t resist one more indulgence.  Amy Shubert kindly provided one of Chef Michael’s recipes that appeared in the June’s Savvy eZine (a mini magazine that all subscribers of Savvy Selections recieve with their wine), featuring Black Prince Winery.

Prince Edward County has a long history of settlement, and of various forms of agriculture.  There is evidence of winemaking as far back as the 1850s, with vineyards now growing on former fruit orchards.  And a tradition of cheesemaking, which includes a number of local cooperatives, is being taken up by newcomers such as Petra and Shawn Cooper, owners of Fifth Town Cheese.  We spent an interesting couple of hours visiting Fifth Town’s dairy and tasting their cheese.

Petra led the tour of the dairy, which was opened less than a year ago, in July 2008.  She is rightfully proud of their Platinum LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) status, and of the wide variety of handmade artisanal cheeses they produce.  She indicated that their ‘green’ certification applies not only to the buildings, but to the cheese-making process, which is very energy intensive, and requires the disposal of significant amounts of waste water.

Eighty percent of the building is made with foodgrade recycled or recycleable materials.  An example is the building shell, constructed of “durisol”  blocks which are made with recycled wood fibre and green cement.  They do not harbour moisture, as the insulation is within the block, and they are fireproof.  Other environmental initiatives on the 20-acre site include a geothermal heat pump which preheats all their wash water, solar panels and a small windmill which generate green power, and a 10,000 litre cistern which captures rainwater.  A constructed wetland acts as a natural processing facility for whey and waste water from the cheese making process.  In addition, they grow hay and alfalfa which are used as feed for the goats and sheep raised by their farm partners.

Petra indicated that their facilities are regularly inspected by CFIA (Canada Food Inspection Agency), but that since their cheeses are handmade, they have little risk of listeria infection as this bacteria tends to grow inside machinery.  Their sophisticated pasteurizing room provides for flash pasteurization of all cheeses for exactly 17 seconds.  Petra indicated that their longer term goal is to make raw milk cheeses as well, but this must wait for suitable milk from their producers.

Their aging caves are constructed of cement covered with mounds of earth.  Geothermal tubes were installed within the raw cement walls to allow some heating in the coldest months of winter.  Otherwise, the caves naturally maintain a temperature range of 12-15 degrees to allow aging and the formation of natural rinds.  High humidity (85-95%) and periodic air changes are also required for natural aging of the cheeses.  Soft ripened cheeses spend 7-14 days in the caves, while hard rinds spend a minimum of 3 months, and up to 9-12 months.

After learning about the cheese making process, we were ready for truck bed tasting with Andrew Laliberte (Cheese Somelier) in the milk receiving area.  We tasted 5 cheeses, from the soft creamy bagel chevre to the 7-month aged Fellowship hard rind cheese.  Each was matched with a complementary wine, such as The Grange of Prince Edward County’s Trumpour’s Mill Pinot Gris VQA  with the Lighthall Tome cheese (one of our purchases!).  Andrew discussed the three sources of the distinticve flavors in cheese:  primary, based on the material you use (in this case goat or sheep milk); secondary, created by the processing method (for instance curd cheese, versus feta-like cheese, versus cheddar); tertiary, the aging process (examples such as soft-ripened cheese or hard rind cheese).  He also expressed his opinion that most cheeses are best matched with white wines, although some of the older, harder cheeses will match with red wines like Pinot Noir.

If you’re a lover of cheddar cheese and you’re in the County, don’t miss a visit to the Black River Cheese Co-operative, which offers a wide range of mild, medium, old and extra old cheddar, as well as flavored cheddars and cheeses from other local producers.  We selected a 6-year old cheddar from among the many types of cheese, as well as some delightful thin currant oatmeal biscuits produced by County Crackers.

Thinking of matching our cheese to a suitable wine, we headed out to a relatively new winery in the County, Sugarbush Vineyards, owned and operated by Sally and Robert Peck.  Sally is a wonderfully outgoing woman with a young family and a passion for her new vocation.  Neither she nor husband Rob had any grape growing or wine making experience when they decided to move back to the County from Alberta (Rob is a native son).  They had visited the Okanagan 10 or so years ago, and so the dream of owning their own vineyard began.   Says Sally, “It seemed so romantic, but when you start working in the vineyard, you realize that you’ve become a farmer!”

They have a large property with 8 acres under vine (the vines are now 7 years old), and opened their tasting room about 2 years ago.  They have planted only vinifera varietals, including Gewurtztraminer, Chardonnay, Gamay, Pinot Noir and Cabernet Franc.  This year, they will be receiving their first 2 oak barrels, and plan to age their Pinot Noir in barrel.  The tasting completed, we left with bottles of the aromatic Gewurtz and the fruity, well-extracted Gamay.

If you’re planning a trip to the County, we recommend a stay at the Merrill Inn.  If you need any suggestions of County wineries to visit, contact us and we will provide you our ‘must visit’ list of wineries and restaurants to visit.

Cheers,

Susan

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Sipping wines with the Black Prince

Posted by Susan

Thursday, June 11th, 2009
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Savvy Selections wine of the month club
Featuring Black Prince Winery

Canada’s wineries delivered to your doorstep

This month brings royalty to the Savvy Selections featuring Black Prince Winery from Prince Edward County.  If you have not visited yet, ‘The County” is an easy weekend getaway 2 to 3 hour drive from Ottawa or Toronto, Ontario.  With rolling countryside, large farms, quaint Loyalist architecture, orchards, vineyards and the white beaches of Sandbanks Provincial Park on Lake Ontario.

 

The County has become Canada’s fastest growing wine region boasting 17 wineries awaiting your visit. Hand in hand, more boutique inns and gourmet restaurants are opening with renowned chefs from the Toronto area moving from the bustle of the city to the leisurely pace of the towns of Picton and Bloomfield.  The County has been settled for centuries and there is evidence of grape growing as early as 1850. In fact, local history notes that a winemaker from the County won a medal and diploma at the 1867 International Exhibition in Philadelphia. 

 

Not surprising then, that wine lovers are flocking to build their dream of a winery in this picturesque area.

 

We are excited to feature one of County’s wine industry pioneers – Black Prince Winery. This is indeed a dream of wine die-hards that became reality when the winery opened its doors in 2003.  In this month’s Savvy Selections, we feature:

– Chardonnay VQA 2007 – a crisp, refreshing wine – perfect as a summer sipping wine

– Melon de Bourgogne VQA 2008 – a unique white wine that was just released in time to be included in the Savvy Selections

– Cabernet Franc Reserve VQA 2007 – an impressive red wine that is growing in popularity & winning awards!

 

Fire up your BBQ, set out the deck chairs, uncork a bottle of wine and read this Savvy e-Zine blog, about the winery’s connection with the Opimium Society, the story of the name and its crest. As always, you will find our Savvy Sommelier tasting notes and summer recipes chosen to pair with your wines.

 

Stock up for the summer…

Summer entertaining requires plenty of good wine on hand.  Rather than fighting traffic to shop, have an assortment of wines delivered to your home or office by calling on Savvy Company to make the arrangements for more bottles of your favorite Black Prince wines or bottles from previously featured wineries in the Savvy Selections.  It is that easy!   Put us on speed dial! Savvy Company 613-SAVVYCO (728-8926)

 

Visiting wine country this summer?

Our Savvy Sommeliers continuously travels and we compile lists of ‘must visit’ wineries with wine recommendations and tips on restaurants to include in your trip.  Let us before you head off to any wine regions across Canada, call on us to map out your trip and to arrange a special tour of the winery for you.

 

Cheers!

Debbie
Follow me: www.twitter.com/savvydebbie



 

Introducing….
Black Prince Winery

Presented by Sommelier Susan Desjardins


Standing on the sun-drenched deck of the Black Prince Winery, sipping a glass of Chardonnay (included in your Savvy Selections) and admiring the just-budded vineyards in the distance, the winery’s general manager Geoffrey Webb, pointed out to me that the warm temperatures of late April brought on bud break sooner than usual. Spoken like an avid gardener, “there’s still a risk of frost through to the full moon”. You can’t control the weather, yet, Geoff has taken all possible measures to produce 100% Prince Edward County wines that express the local terroir as well as the typicity of the varietal. 

 

Originally from Montreal, Geoff attended Queens University and often visited Sandbanks Provincial Park to windsurf. He established a wine business in Toronto that led him to meet John Sambrook – the general manager of the Opimian Society.

 

Geoff was invited to get involved in several aspects of Opimian Society including finding a vineyard to invest in when the Society repatriated an investment it had made in a vineyard in Napa, California.

 

Formerly a horse farm, the 50-acre property is now the location of Black Prince Winery with a gently rolling south-facing slope where the vines are planted in deep sandy loam over limestone. The existing farm buildings were transformed into winery operations and there are have plans for new buildings in the near future. 

 

As one of the pioneers in the County, much experimenting was required to figure out what grapes would grow best.  When the vineyards were first planted in 2002, varietals included Pinot Noir, Riesling, Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc, Marechal Foch, Vidal and Chambourcin.  After a few years, it was decided to tear out the Pinot Noir and Riesling vines.  “We just couldn’t get the quality of wine we wanted from these grapes”, explained Geoff. 

 

In addition to grape varieties, weather plays a huge part in the winemaking.  For many varietals, the County tests their hardiness.  As we wandered through the vineyard, Geoff explained to me that all of the work in his vineyards is done manually, so that vigilance can be maintained during the growing season and the quality of the grapes can be maintained through harvest. Unlike other wine regions in Ontario, after harvest, winemakers have one more job to do before wine.  The vines are “hilled up” (grape growing term: buried under a foot of soil) to protect them from the harshness of winter. 

 

In an excellent vintage like 2007, when growing conditions throughout the spring, summer and fall, the grapes were healthy with high flavor concentration, and winemakers left the fruit hang on the vines to optimum sugar levels.  In 2008, the warm dry late summer weather compensated for the wet conditions in spring and early summer. Winemakers are used to working with Mother Nature to grow the best wine possible in the vineyard before harvest.

 

Since inception, Black Prince had a consulting winemaker.  Originally, from California, but more recently they have benefited from the expertise of a Niagara-based consultant, who is transferring knowledge to the local associate winemaker, John Fricker.  John is an award-winning amateur winemaker turned professional involved in winemaking in the County for many years.  

 

John monitors the Black Prince vineyards, and works closely with the growers who supply grapes for the other labels produced by Black Prince in their winery site – Harwood and Bella Vigne. This co-operative concept helps incubate new wineries. Geoff is enthusiastic with this approach as it provides the opportunity to showcase the terroir of other areas of the County with wines made from grapes of smaller growers who have yet to established their own wineries.  “We get excellent quality from these partner vineyards, and our winemaker is actively involved in the management of their vineyards.  We’re proud of our slogan – one winery, many terroir.”

 

Another addition to terroir, is the arrival of a cooper (winespeak: barrel maker) in the County.  Excited to make wine with County grapes barrel aged in County oak, Black Prince purchased 5 of 6 available County oak barrels and are currently aging a reserve Chardonnay.  Geoff offered me a barrel sample- mark my word, it promises to be a beautifully balanced wine. Be on the watch for it in a few years.

 

About the regal name…

Geoff explained that the owners wanted something linked to Prince Edward.  After searching in the history books about all of the royal “Prince Edwards”, they settled on Edward the Black Prince, who was a successful military commander and ruled over a large section of Aquitaine, France – an area that included Bordeaux – a perfect wine connection! 

 

You may be interested to know that the Black Prince winery escutcheon, like those of yore, depicts the history of its founders.  In the top left and bottom right quadrants pertain to the Opimian Society, while the top right and bottom left quadrants recognize the founders and the families which have contributed to the success of Black Prince Winery.

 

Click here to watch Black Prince Winery’s video
 

 

 

~ Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes ~


Black Prince Chardonnay VQA 2007, $14.75
The fruit was sourced from three County vineyards, including the Wicked Point vineyard.  The fermentation in stainless steel tanks brings out the crisp minerality and zesty fruit, similar to the French styled unoaked Chardonnay – Chablis.  Black Prince Winery is excited that this wine won a bronze at the “Chardonnay du Monde” in Burgundy, France. 

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: A lovely pale gold, this dry wine has delightful aromas of ripe fruits, with a hint of pineapple and citrus.  The fruit flavors are carried through on the palate with a refreshing acidity.  The wine is well-balanced with a crisp finish.

 

Suggested Food Pairing: Served well-chilled, this medium-bodied wine will go well with smoked salmon, a chicken salad, or a light cream-based dish.  Or, sip it on it’s own as you enjoy the lazy days of summer on your backyard or cottage deck!

 

Cellaring: No need to wait…this wine is ready to drink now.

 

 

Black Prince Melon de Bourgogne VQA 2008, $16.75 

We are excited to hear what you think of this unique wine.  To our ‘savvy’ knowledge, only two wineries in Ontario craft a Melon de Bourgogne – and both are from the County!

When we first tasted the 2007 vintage of Black Prince’s Melon de Bourgogne, we were impressed with this lush wine – and so was everyone else who tasted it, as it is now sold out.  With some arm twisting and sweet talking (wink-wink), we convinced Geoff to release the just-bottled 2008 vintage first, to you, our Savvy Selections subscribers! 

2008 was a challenging vintage all around, with heavy rain in the early summer, yet the winemaker has done an outstanding job creating this unique white wine. 

 

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: Also known as Muscadet, Melon de Bourgogne is most commonly grown in the Loire Valley of France.  However, it has found a home in Ontario, partly due to its winter hardiness, and to its ability to “let the terroir sing”, to quote Geoff Heinricks (author of A Fool and Forty Acres a great book about the history of the Prince Edward County as well as first-hand recounts of the trials and tribulations establishing a vineyard in this new region).  Our Savvy Selections tasting panel found Black Prince’s Melon to be aromatic and fresh, with hints of honey, melon and citrus.  Bright citrus and apple peel carry through on the palate of this medium-bodied wine.  Hints of pithy grapefruit and minerality bring a cleansing and pleasant bitter note to the long finish.   

Suggested Food Pairing: made from grapes grown by the sea in France, and in this case by the Lake Ontario in the County, this wine is ideally paired with seafood.  To keep it local, enjoy the wine with the Fifth Town Artisan Cheese Cape Vesey cheese from the County, or a creamy Sauvagine cheese from Québec.  During my tour of the County this spring, I enjoyed tasty crab cakes at the Merrill Inn, and the owners have kindly (yes, more arm twisting and sweet talking was involved…what we do for our subscribers!!) provided the recipe below.

NOTE! Since this wine was literally just bottled in late May, we recommend you don’t open it for 4-6 weeks so that it has a chance to recover from “bottle shock” (winespeak for the change in the wine having quietly rested in tanks for months then moved onto the bottling line & shipped from the winery).  Chill & enjoy it this summer.

 

Black Prince Cabernet Franc Reserve VQA 2007, $15.75 

To produce this approachable Cabernet Franc with softer tannins, the grapes were lightly pressed, the free run juice was captured separately and then blended back into the pressed juice.  The result is a wine that was recognized with a Grand Champion award at the Royal Winter Fair, as well as a Bronze Medal at the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition. Bravo!

 

Savvy Sommelier Tasting Notes: A bright ruby hue, this Cab was a favorite amongst our Savvy Selections tasting panel for its ripe cherry aromas and hints of red peppers, sweet herbs and spices.  Made with 100% County grapes from the spectacular 2007 vintage, the flavors include red cherry, pepper…and even roasted red peppers!  The wine is well-balanced, with moderate acidity and integrated tannins.  The fruit and pepper notes carry through on the medium-long finish.

 

Suggested Food Pairing:  This wine is ideally paired with barbequed or roasted red meat, such as lamb, or with herbed roasted pork.  Enjoy with the exotic recipe we offer below: Lamb with Garlic & Dark Chocolate Sauce.

 

Cellaring: This wine is drinking well now, but could be appropriate for short-term (1 or 2 years) in the cellar.

 

Listen to CBC Radio interview about the award this wine won


  

~ Recipes to enjoy with your Savvy Selections ~

 

With Black Prince Chardonnay…

Argentinean Garlic Chicken with Corn, Tomato & Parsley Salsa

Adapted from the Ottawa Citizen
Serves 6

Ingredients

For the salsa:

1 bunch (~2 C) Italian parsley leaves, chopped
½ shallot, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
¼ c white vinegar
1 tsp dried oregano, or to taste
5-6 drops Tabasco sauce
¼ tsp ground pepper
½ c olive oil
1 pint cherry tomatoes, roasted
2 c corn kernels (from can, drained, or cut from fresh cobs)

For the chicken:

1 tsp each pepper, dried oregano, finely chopped garlic, ground cumin (optional)
1 Tbsp olive oil
6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

 

Method

1.     First, cut the tomatoes in half, place on baking sheet cut side up, drizzle with olive oil, and roast in oven at 375F for about 30 minutes.

 

2.     Meanwhile, to make the sauce, in a food processor, combine the parsley, shallot, garlic, vinegar, oregano, Tabasco, pepper.  Process until finely chopped.  With motor running, slowly add oil and process until well blended but with coarse texture.  Pour into a bowl.  Stir in the corn kernels.  Once the tomato halves have cooled, add them and stir.

 

3.     To prepare the chicken, combine the pepper, oregano, cumin, garlic and olive oil.  Brush each chicken breast with these ingredients.  Grill on BBQ 3-5 minutes each side, or until chicken is not pink inside.

 

4.     Serve the parsley sauce on the side or spooned over each breast, along with small roasted potatoes.  Enjoy with Black Prince’s summer crisp Chardonnay!

 

 

With Black Prince Melon de Bourgogne…

Merrill Inn’s Crab Cakes
Recipe kindly provided by Chef Michael Sullivan, Merrill Inn
Serves 6 (12 2 oz. patties)

Many thanks to Amy Shubert, owner and innkeeper at the Merrill Inn for providing
this delicious recipe which we enjoyed during our stay.

Ingredients
1 lb. crab meat
½ C white bread crumbs
1 stalk celery, diced
½ red pepper, diced
½ medium onion, diced
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp Old Bay Spice (or ½ tsp Cajun spice) cheese
pepper, to taste
Dash of lemon juice
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp butter

 

Method

1.   Sauté peppers, onion, celery and Old Bay Spice in 1 Tbsp oil until soft.

 

2.   Stir in bread crumbs followed by crab meat.  Add egg and mayonnaise, pepper and lemon to taste.
Chef’s tip: Don’t stir too much to avoid breaking down crab meat. 

 

3.   Refrigerate immediately for about 1 hour.

 

4.   Form the mixture into 2 oz. patties (2 ½ ” wide by ¾” thick).

 

5.    Preheat oven to 400F.  Preheat a cast iron pan with a light coating of vegetable oil on medium heat until the oil just starts to smoke.  Place patties in the pan.  Add a small piece of butter and gently sauté for 1 minute.  Place the pan in the preheated oven for 4-5 minutes.  Take the pan out of the oven, turn over the patties, and brown the other side on the stovetop over medium heat.

 

6.    Serve 2 patties over mixed dressed greens. Garnish with Cajun mayo if desired.

 


With Black Prince Cabernet Franc…

Peppered Lamb Loins with Garlic & Dark Chocolate Sauce
Recipe adapted from LCBO Food & Drink Magazine, Winter 2009
Serves 4

Ingredients
1 Tbsp freshly ground pepper (or to taste)
1 tsp herbes de Provence
2 boneless lamb loins (about 1 lb.)
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp finely chopped garlic
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 c unsalted or low-salt lamb or chicken stock
½ oz. dark bittersweet chocolate (70-80% cocoa), chopped
 

Method

1.    Combine pepper, herbes de Provence and 1 Tbsp olive oil.  Brush lamb loins with mixture.

 

2.    Preheat oven to 200F.  Heat 1 Tbsp oil in a small pan on medium heat.  Add chopped garlic, lower heat and cook until the garlic is just golden.  Remove pan from heat.  Add stock and return to heat.  Bring stock to a boil and reduce to ¼ -1/3 C.  Add chocolate, stirring until melted.  Reduce heat to minimum.

 

3.    While the stock is being reduced, grill lamb on BBQ 12-15 minutes, or until pink inside.  Transfer to a dish and keep warm in the oven as you finish the sauce.

 

4.    Once the sauce is ready, slice the lamb into thick slices and pour over a tablespoon of sauce.  Timing is everything with this recipe, as you don’t want the chocolate sauce to overcook!

 

5.    Taste your Black Prince Cabernet Franc alone, and then with the lamb.  Do you notice a difference?

 

 

Cheers to the arrival of summer!

 

 

Would you like to subscribe to Savvy Selections
It is simple…and delicious. 
Register online for 4, 6 or 12 month subscription and get ready to discover what Canadian wineries have to offer.

 

 

Already a Savvy Selections subscriber?  
We hope that you are enjoying the wines as much as our Sommeliers enjoy finding them for you.  When you have found wines that you would like a few more bottles, simply contact the Debbie and she will gladly organize a special shipment for you.

 

 

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