In case you haven’t seen the weather report, next week, in our neck of the woods, the forecast is for April Showers reigning supreme (pun intended).
Most of us have fingers crossed for rain this month. Dry conditions are always worrisome, and prairie farmers, us included, have been a little anxious about it this year. So April showers are indeed top of mind.
Today I’ve been singing along with Bing Crosby… and his opening line in “April Showers” goes like this: “Life is not a highway strewn with flowers, still it holds a goodly share of bliss.” A goodly share of bliss – this is what we need to concentrate on! And for some of us, a great glass of wine can contribute to that bliss better than a few things. If you count yourself in that category, I have good news for you…
This April is definitely winemaking month in the winery. With the busy summer season just around the corner, our tanks will soon be giving up their lovely cargo to be bottled and labelled and on their way to a retail store or market near you. Our exciting news is that, due to a complete sell-out in 2021, we have decided to once again offer our summer-only release: Blueberry Fruit Wine. Many of you have commented on how much you enjoyed this one: its fresh, full-bodied, wild blueberry taste paired perfectly with all your summer plans! If you haven’t tried it yet, don’t take my word for it. Visit us soon at any of our market locations and give it a try. We’d love to hear from you after that.
Not traditionally known for its great weather, April may have temperatures that we aren’t too happy with, but it also may surprise us with some warm days. If you’re like us, you are more than ready to get on board and embrace our favourite hashtag: #PatioTime. It may seem like we’re pushing the season, but trust me, it’s never too early to enjoy fruit wine sangrias. With that in mind, and in keeping with Bing Crosby’s theme, here’s a great sangria to consider for the long weekend this month:
Blissful Blueberry Sangria
1 bottle Field Stone Blueberry Fruit Wine
2 cans (330 ml) San Pellegrino Aranciata (orange)
500 ml. Lemon Iced Tea
1 orange, sliced
1 lemon, sliced
1 cup blueberries
Combine all in a large pitcher. Add ice and chill. Yum!
This sangria sparkles and bubbles a beautiful colour and looks gorgeous in a clear glass. And the taste….o my! Bring it on, #PatioTime!
And coming up in a couple of weeks? Easter! In my mind, Easter brings the word “feast” to a whole new level. I can smell the turkeys and hams roasting already. This is your reminder to stock up on Bumbleberry Fruit Wine for the turkey feast and don’t forget Cherry Fruit Wine if your preference is for ham. As many of you already know, nothing compliments a spring feast like the delicate flavours of native berries. Are you taking wine with you to present to your Easter-dinner hostess? On Easter Weekend we’ll be offering a packaged duo of one Bumbleberry and one Cherry, all tied up with a ribbon! Now that’s easy… let the feasting begin!
With warm weather in our sights, we are busily getting ready to hit the Seasonal Farmers Markets circuit. We are super excited to be adding some new locations around the province this year, and at the same time returning to many of our favourites. We’ll have more about each of them in next month’s newsletter, so stay tuned.
But for a ‘sneak preview’ of seasonal summer markets, come join us this month at our one-day Spring Markets…
On Saturday, April 9 you will find us at the Trading Post Spring Market at the Strathmore Ag Grounds. Open from 10am-4pm, Trading Post pays host to a large variety of artisans from our local area. Find more info at www.facebook.com/thestrathmoretradingpostmarket.
Saturday, April 16 you will find us at Airdrie Spring Fling. This popular early-season market never fails to deliver! 10 am to 4pm, Town and Country Center. More information at www.facebook.com/airdriefarmersmarket.
April 30th finds us at the Civic Centre in Strathmore for the annual Mother’s Day Market. Yes, it’s time to start thinking about Mom! From 10 to 2 you will find lots of gifts for mom, and you may just want to take a treat home for yourself, too. Info at www.strathmorefarmersmarket.ca.
And finally, for the first time ever, we are excited to announce the Millarville Spring Market on April 30th! Calgarians’ favourite drive to the country can start a little earlier this year. With over 100 vendors, it is the perfect stop for unique foods and gifts… and just in time for Easter/Mother’s Day/Father’s Day and Graduation. Open from 9-2 and entry fee is by donation. Check it out at www.millarvilleracetrack.com.
Of course our products are available year-round at many fine retailers in Alberta (including all Co-op stores) and we are always happy to be adding newcomers to the Field Stone family. And year-round we offer free tastings and all our products at Calgary Farmers Market, Edmonton Bountiful Market and Gasoline Alley Farmers Market. We are always happy to serve you there!
Finally, if you are like me and are ready to leave baked fruit crisps behind now that Spring is here, try this Field Stone favourite for your next dinner party, or maybe even Easter dinner. It has Summer written all over it! Not only is it extremely yummy, it has the added bonus of being beautiful.
Field Stone Strawberry Cream Trifle
1 baked white cake, 2 layer size
2 cups (or desired amount) sliced fresh strawberries
1 Vanilla pudding and pie filling, 6 serving size
3 cups milk
1/2 cup Field Stone Strawberry Dessert Wine
1 cup whipping cream
1/2 tsp vanilla
Cut cake into chunks. Cook pudding with milk according to package directions. Cool to room temperature. Hasten cooling by placing pan in cold water, stirring often.
Whip cream and vanilla until stiff. Make layers of cake chunks, a generous sprinkle of Strawberry Dessert Wine, sliced strawberries and pudding in glass trifle bowl, using as many layers as needed according to size of bowl. Make the last layer pudding. Spread whipped cream over top. Chill. Garnish with fresh strawberries, if desired. Enjoy!
And that’s all for this month.
Happy Spring, Everyone…. let #PatioTime begin!