It's hard to believe, but "...an endless banquet" has already been "on the air" for a year now. We weren't sure how long it would last or just how frequently we'd be posting when we started out. We were just looking for someplace to channel some of our food-related energy. We took a while to find the right name, then took our first hesitant steps. Within a few days we'd both gotten the bug pretty bad. That bug hasn't subsided yet.
We were planning on throwing a big shindig to celebrate. We had something like this in mind:
But plans didn't exactly come together the way we thought they might, so instead we celebrated our first anniversary by taking a little jaunt back down to Franklin to visit our friend M. Safian. We weren't sure if his stand would still be in operation, but we needed some more apples, and the day had turned into a lovely one, so we threw all caution into the wind and set out. When we got to his stand things looked pretty grim. His premises were fenced off and although there were some large crates full of apples still in view, there were no signs of life. I made a slow pass-by, then made a u-turn, and parked the car right in front. I tried to convince Michelle to go up and ring the doorbell, but she said the last thing she wanted to do was disturb a man on what might be his day off. We were trying to decide what to do next when, out of the blue, I caught a glimpse of M. Safian crossing the road in the rear-view mirror. What luck! We got out of the car, said 'hello,' and got ourselves let in.
M. Safian, didn't have too too much left, he mostly had apples he'd set aside for making apple cider, but he had plenty enough for us. We picked out a few big baskets of empires, spys, and russetts, spent some quality time with his 9-year old doberman, "Susie,"
talked about the merits of blending apple varieties when it comes to baking, cooking, and juicing, and tried to determine M. Safian's schedule over the next couple of weeks in case we need to come back for a third helping. Then we set out in search of artisanal apple cider vinegar.
We didn't find any apple cider vinegar, but we did come across Cidrerie du Minot in Hemmingford, one of the first artisanal cider makers to have been established in Quebec. There we had a dégustation of their superior line of ciders, including low-alcohol, sparkling, and ice cider. We were so impressed that we bought two bottles.
Tonight we celebrated our anniversary with some sparkling cider, some cheese, some wine, some steaks from Maison du Roti, and a selection of vegetables we bought from Patrice on Saturday.
Hello, Year 2.
And many thanks to all of you out there for reading.
Cidrerie du Minot, 376 Covey Hill Road, Hemmingford, (450) 247-3111