Publisher’s Note: The Harvest Issue — Eat Fresh, Eat Local

Written by Chris McDonell

There is no better time or place to appreciate the bounty of our country than autumn in Ontario. Our farmers’ markets are especially chock-a-block full of beautiful fruits and vegetables, and if you like to eat fresh and eat local, get out there. To assist your efforts, we’ve compiled a list of regional farmers’ markets that are looking forward to seeing you. Meet a farmer and thank her or him for the bag of goodies you’re taking home with you.

Of course, while I do like to think of this as harvest season, I’m aware that this is not technically true for many of our local farmers and producers. For some, their primary harvest happened months ago, such as the asparagus and strawberry growers, and for others, Thanksgiving comes much too early for a true day of rest. Their fields won’t be harvested until later in the fall, bringing in much of our squash, cabbage and carrots. For those raising livestock, seasonality may or may not be a factor in their operation. It might be “turkey season” but the dairy business runs 365 days a year.

Global warming is having an effect on farming, perhaps most negatively through “extreme” weather, but a longer growing season may be a fringe benefit in our locale. Some businesses have taken big — and prescient — steps to be less weather-dependent. In Strathroy, Jo and Pauline Slegers started building greenhouses 30 years ago and became certified organic in 2004. Today, Slegers Living Organic Greens sells 30 different products year-round, from tender young micro greens to mature salad greens, lettuce and herbs. Packed still growing in soil for better taste and a longer shelf life, you can have your own harvest days with a little snip. Available at many retailers such as Remark Fresh Market and through distributors like On the Move Organics, you can also buy direct at their farm gate (

The commitment to using local, fresh products is shared by two restaurants that we are profiling in this issue. Eddington’s of Exeter and Craft Farmacy, with chefs James Eddington and Andrew Wolwowicz respectively, offer seasonal menus that reflect our region, while creatively expressing their culinary talents in unique ways. I’m certain our readers will enjoy both stories.

Our wine column features Alton Farms Estate Winery in Lambton County, where harvest season is taken extremely seriously. The Huron Shores wine region is starting to flourish and this is a great story about working with our climate, soil and local challenges to make great wine. I especially appreciate Alton Farms’ commitment to sustainable practices.

For over a year now, London has been excited about Alieska Robles’ Forest City Cookbook project. The book is now out, and it’s a show-stopping epic that is both a great collection of recipes from London’s top chefs and a thoughtful tribute to local farmers and agriculture. I hasten to add that the book is gorgeous to look at too. We’re pleased to share a couple of recipes in this issue, and a bonus recipe online from “our” Bryan Lavery, Eatdrink Food Editor and Writer at Large, who also contributed a foreword, a couple of recipes, and other writing to the book. Congratulations Alieska and your crew for an accomplishment that exceeded our high expectations.

There’s plenty more to enjoy in the following pages. This issue marks our 11th anniversary, and I’m amazed at how there is still so much happening that we can never keep up with all of it. We’re glad for the challenge though. Thanks for reading.




Local Farmers’ Markets, from Amherstburg to Woodstock


Amherstburg Farmers‘ Market
7860 County Road 20, outside Malden Community Cultural Centre, Amherstburg
SAT 8:30am – 1:30pm
Closing: OCT 19


Bayfield Farmers‘ Market
Clan Gregor Square, Bayfield
FRI 3pm – 7pm
Closing: OCT 13


Belle River Farmers‘ Market
Optimist Park, 705 Notre Dame St., Belle River
SUN 10am – 2pm
Closing: OCT 7


Chatham-Kent Farmers‘ Market
Highway 2, 9877 Longwoods Rd., Chatham
WED 9am –5pm
Open All Year


Covent Garden Farmers’ Market
130 King Street, London
THUR 8 – 2, SAT 8 – 1
Closing: DEC 29


Downtown Windsor Farmers‘ Market
Pelissier and Maiden Lane, Windsor
SAT 8m – 1pm
Closing: OCT 6


Downtown Woodstock Farmers‘ Market
Downtown Museum Square, Woodstock
THUR 11am – 4pm
Closing: OCT 4


Exeter Farmers‘ Market
1-35 MacNaughton Drive, Exeter
THUR 3am – 7pm
Closing: OCT 4


Forest Farmers‘ & Artisan Market
14 King Street, Forest
FRI 8am – 1pm
Closing: OCT 6


Goderich Farmers‘ Market
Downtown Market Square, Goderich
SAT 8am – 1pm
Closing: OCT 6


Grand Bend Farmers‘ Market
1 Main Street, Grand Bend
WED 8am – 1pm
Closing: OCT 3


Horton Farmers‘ Market
10–16 Manitoba Street, St. Thomas
SAT 8am – noon
Closing: NOV 3


Ilderton Farmers‘ Market
92 Ilderton Road, Ilderton
SAT 8am – noon
Closing: SEPT 22


Kingsville Farmers‘ Market
28 Division Street South, Kingsville
SAT 10am – 2pm
Closing: OCT 13


Leamington Farmers‘ Market
Leamington Fairgrounds, 194 Erie St. N., Leamington
SAT 9am – 2pm
Open All Year


Masonville Farmers‘ Market
1680 Richmond St., London
FRI 8am – 1pm
Closing: OCT 12


Old South Farmers‘ Market
Storm Stayed Brewing Co., 169 Wharncliffe Rd. S., London
THURS 4pm – 7pm
Closing: SEPT 27


Petrolia Farmers‘ Market
369 Fletcher St., behind the Library (Main St.), Petrolia
SAT 7:30am – noon
Closing: OCT 6


Point Edward Moonlight Farmers‘ Market
Next to Michigan Ave. (under the Bluewater Bridge), Point Edward
THURS 4pm – 8pm
Closing: OCT 4


Port Rowan Farmers‘ Market
Lions Pavilion — Sea Queen Rd., Port Rowan
FRI 3pm – 6Ppm
Closing: OCT 5


Sarnia Farmers‘ Market
Corner of Proctor & Ontario St., Sarnia                       
WED, SAT 7am – 1pm
Open All Year


Simcoe Farmers‘ Market
172 South Drive, Simcoe
THURS 9am – 4pm
Closing: Open All Year


St. Marys Farmers‘ Market
116 Jones St. E., St. Marys
SAT 8am – noon
Open All Year


Stratford Farmers‘ Market
353 McCarthy Road, Rotary Complex/Agriplex, Stratford
SAT 7am – noon
Open All Year


Stratford Slow Food Market
Market Place Drive, Stratford
SUN 10am – 2pm
Open All Year


The Market at Western Fair District
900 King St., London
SAT, SUN 8am – 3pm
Open All Year


Tillsonburg Farmers‘ Market
41 Bridge Street West, Tillsonburg
SAT 8am – noon
Closing: NOV 10


Trails End Farmers‘ Market
4370 Dundas St East, London
FRI 8am – 1pm
Open All Year


Waterford Farmers‘ Market
Corner of Alice St. & St. James St. S., Waterford
WED 4pm – 7pm
Closing: SEPT 26


Wingham Farmers‘ Market
360 Josephine St., Wingham
WED 2:30pm – 6pm
Closing: SEPT 26


Woodstock Farmers‘ Market
Woodstock Fairgrounds, 875 Nellis Street, Woodstock
SAT 7am – noon
Open All Year

About the author

Chris McDonell

Eatdrink founder and publisher Chris McDonell brings integrity and a widely diverse background in publishing to the task of making Eatdrink a vital part of the food and drink scene in Southwestern Ontario.