The bounty of Nova Scotia's many orchards and farms is on full display every summer in local farmer's markets. From Sydney to Yarmouth, Amherst to Halifax, there's produce galore to sample and enjoy. Here are some links to sites that will help you plan your food and wine adventures across the province.
• Farmersmarketsnovascotia.ca: This is an excellent resource for connecting with artisans and local farmers – and for celebrating community spirit.
• Wolfvillefarmersmarket.ca: This market hosts a number of foodie events, such as Valley Vineyards (Sept. 17, 2011), Deep Roots at the Market (Sept. 24, 2011) and Pumpkin Palooza (Oct. 8, 2011).
• Halifaxfarmersmarket.com: This gem of a market in downtown Halifax has been open year-round since 1750.
• Buylocalthinkglobal.com: The Farmer's Markets page has a listing of many of Nova Scotia's delightful farmer's markets.
• Valleytourism.ca: This site offers a listing of the well-loved markets in the picturesque Annapolis Valley.
• Nogginsfarm.ca: Agritourism-type activities are the focus of this farm. It's also home to Tideview Cider, made with heirloom apples grown at Noggins Corner.
• Tasteofnovascotia.com: Taste of Nova Scotia is a provincewide program with dozens of members ready and willing to offer the best of everything culinary-related.
• Novascotia.com: For all things Nova Scotian, including food and wine, places to eat, recipes and planning your trip, check out Food and Wine under the Discover Nova Scotia tab.
• Adventuresintaste.ca: There's plenty of information here to help you create your own unique culinary vacation package. There's also a free iPhone app available.
• Selectnovascotia.ca: This site features event listings, seasonal and local ingredient profiles, and recipes.
Page 1 of 5 – Discover the most facinating (and delicious) food festivals hosted in Nova Scotia on page 2.
Nova Scotia's food festivals
Nova Scotia may not be Canada's largest province, but with its wide variety of food festivals, you'd never know it. And let's not forget wine festivals – the province has a growing number of vineyards producing top-notch wines. For an in-depth listing of events and markets across the province, visit novascotia.com and check out Festivals and Events under the Things to See and Do tab. Here's a list to get you started.
• 2011 Nova Scotia Wine Country Passport – provincewide, May 1 to Nov. 12, 2011; winesofnovascotia.ca
• Pictou Lobster Carnival – Pictou, N.S., July 8 to 10, 2011; pictoulobstercarnival.ca
• Queens County Seafest – Brooklyn, N.S., Aug. 2011; queenscountyseafest.ca
• Digby Scallop Days Festival – Digby, N.S., Aug. 3 to 7, 2011; digbyscallopdays.com
• Wild Blueberry Harvest Festival – provincewide, Aug. 19 to Sept. 3, 2011;
• 8th Annual Tuna Tournament – Wedgeport, N.S., Aug. 22 to 27, 2011; wedgeporttunamuseum.com
• Nova Scotia Fall Wine Festival – provincewide, Sept. 15 to Oct. 16, 2011; nsfallwinefestival.ca
• Bridgetown Ciderfest – Bridgetown, N.S., Sept. 15 to 18, 2011; bridgetownciderfest.com
• North Shore Oktoberfest – Tatamagouche, N.S., last weekend of Sept. 2011; nsoktoberfest.ca
• Valley Pumpkin Fest – Annapolis Valley, N.S., Oct. 2011; valleypumpkinfest.com
• Nova Scotia Winter Ice Wine Festival – Annapolis Valley, N.S., Feb. 2 to 12, 2012; nsicewinefestival.ca
Page 2 of 5 – We dish on a fabulous family-run restaurant you've got to visit when in Nova Scotia on page 3.
When travelling through Masstown in central Nova Scotia, be sure to stop in at the family-run Masstown Market. They sell a wide selection of beautiful local fruits, vegetables, cheeses, meats, jams, vinegars and pickles, and they're a full-service grocery store.
But Masstown is more than just a market. Their wine store offers many local wines (see page 5, for more on Nova Scotia wineries). There is also a delightful home-style bakery, ice cream parlour and cafeteria-style restaurant, with plenty of seats for relaxing both inside and out.
Atlantic eats at the market
The restaurant is well-known, and for good reason: their soups and chowders, biscuits, sandwiches and salads are legendary. Our rich Nova Scotia Seafood Chowder and flaky Buttermilk Biscuits were inspired by Masstown's famous versions.
The market also houses a visitor information centre, Bay of Fundy interpretive displays, a garden centre, gift shop and free Internet access. Don't miss out on this local landmark and impromptu community gathering place. For more information, visit masstownmarket.com.
Page 3 of 5 – Did you know Nova Scotia is the second largest wild blueberry grower in the world? Learn about Nova Scotia berries and find delicious ways to enjoy 'em on page 4.
Local and healthy: Wild blueberries
Did you know that Nova Scotia is the second-largest wild blueberry grower (after Maine) in the world? Every year, farmers in the province harvest more than 40 million pounds (18 million kilograms) of berries.
Cumberland County, in central Nova Scotia, contains some of the world's lushest wild blueberry fields. The hub of all this bustling blueberry business is the quaint town of Oxford. Known as the Wild Blueberry Capital of Canada, it is home to Oxford Frozen Foods, the largest global supplier of frozen wild blueberries.
Our favourite ways to enjoy wild Nova Scotian blueberries
Nova Scotia's provincial berry is renowned for its health benefits. The good news: Frozen blueberries are just as nutritious as fresh, so use them all year in these delicious ways:
• In smoothies or shakes
• Over ice cream with maple syrup
• On yogurt or cereal (Tip: If you're using frozen berries, microwave for about 15 seconds before using.)
• In homemade frozen yogurt: Puree blueberries with sugar, lemon juice and yogurt; freeze until firm
• In a leafy green salad with goat cheese and hazelnuts
• In pancake batter, or on hot waffles or French toast
Find lots of delicious new ways to enjoy blueberries in our collection of the best blueberry recipes.
For more, visit wildblueberries.com and nswildblueberries.com.
Page 4 of 5 – There's more to Nova Scotia than just blueberries. Learn about Nova Scotia's blossoming wine industry on page 5.
A toast to Nova Scotia wineries
The wine regions of Nova Scotia have been growing by leaps and bounds over the last few years. With medal wins at the Wine Access 2010 Canadian wine awards – L'Acadie Vineyards took a gold for their 2007 Prestige Brut – the province is staking out its claim on the Canadian wine map. Sadly, most Nova Scotia wines aren't available outside the province, but here are some wineries that are well worth the visit when you're out East.
• L'Acadie Vineyards, Wolfville, N.S.; lacadievineyards.ca
• Bear River Vineyards, Bear River, N.S.; wine.travel
• Blomidon Estate Winery, Canning, N.S.; blomidonwine.com
• Domaine de Grand Pré, Grand Pré, N.S.; grandprewines.ns.ca
• Gaspereau Vineyards, Gaspereau, N.S.; gaspereauwine.com
• Jost vineyards, Malagash, N.S.; jostwine.com
• Lunenburg County Winery, Newburne, N.S.; canada-wine.com
• Petite Rivière Vineyards, Crousetown, N.S.; petiterivierevineyards.ca
• Muir Murray Estate Winery, Wolfville, N.S.; wwww.muirmurraywinery.com
• Sainte-Famille Wines, Falmouth, N.S.; st-famille.com
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