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Stories From the Farm

An Update from Rick: Cowichan Rhumb

Thursday, December 6, 2018

Hi all, Rick here. I don’t normally do the blog thing, but we just released our first ever Merridale Rhumb and I wanted to take the opportunity to share some behind-the-scenes on what this release is all about.

First, we know you want to know about the name. It's unconventional. But so are we. In navigation, a Rhumb Line, Rhumb, or Loxodrome is an arc that crosses all meridians of longitude at the same angle. That is, a path with constant bearing as measured relative to true or magnetic north. It's a nautical term, and as we all know, the drink of choice at sea is rum... so it felt like a fitting choice. We also love the idea of Rhumb as a metaphor for embracing adventure and finding solace in points of reference along the way. 

So…why make rum? Because we like it. And we...

10 Reasons to get Married at Merridale

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

1) You’ll have the most stunning setting

No matter what time of year, the orchard and farm at Merridale is a charmingly beautiful place to take your vows and celebrate with friends and family. In the summer season, long, warm days finish with golden sunlight over the orchard and in the springtime, our apple trees are bursting with fragrant, pink blossoms. In fall and winter, the farm feels like a cozy escape.

Your ceremony and reception, with photo opportunities, are all taken care of in one spot, which makes it easy for you and your guests to enjoy the whole day.

2) We’ll be with you every step of the way

Merridale has been planning weddings for over 15 years.  We know that most brides and grooms get nervous when it comes to planning their wedding...

Why we're hosting the first-ever Craft Spirit Festival in November

Sunday, October 21, 2018

We had so much fun hosting the Cider Harvest Festival in September…we’re doing it again. Only this time, it’s all about the spirits. Introducing: The Craft Spirit Festival at Merridale. On November 3, we’ll be hosting all eleven craft distilleries on Vancouver Island for an evening tasting event where you can sample craft spirits, sip on cocktails, meet the makers, and learn about the art of craft distilling. 

SO… WHAT MAKES IT CRAFT?

Craft is defined as someone who produces spirits from raw material to final product entirely at one location. BC craft spirits must be made from BC-grown agriculture products, then processed, fermented, aged, and bottled at a single location. They typically cost more to produce because of the quality raw materials, smaller batch sizes, and few...

3 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Harvest Season at a Craft Cidery

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Harvest season is upon us, and we started juicing on September 20.  A bit earlier than usual, but as everyone knows, this summer was a warm one. 

1.   The bees are the real MVPs

It was an excellent year for the fruit at the farm. The bees were healthy and active which meant a good fertilization of the apple blossoms. A good blossom results in a good fruit set.

We have several hives here at the farm and our bees are an essential part of the operation. We also collect, use, and sell the apple blossom honey from our property.

2.            No rain, no problem

We had a relatively normal spring leading into a hot summer, but the lack of rain was not as much of an issue as many may think. In fact, we have found that the addition of water to ripening fruit...

Everything You Need to Know About the Cider Harvest Festival

Sunday, September 2, 2018

EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE CIDER HARVEST FESTIVAL

While technically it’s still summer, there’s been a crispness in the air lately that reminds us fall is just around the corner. And with fall comes many wonderful things, including harvest season!

On Sunday, September 30, join us for the second annual Cider Harvest Festival here at our farm and orchard in Cobble Hill. We’ll be bringing together fifteen of BC’s top craft cideries to celebrate the art of craft cider. Everyone who attends will be able to sample lots of different products from each cidery, meet the makers, and generally learn about craft cider from those who live and breathe it every day. We will also have an pop-up store where you can purchase full-sized bottles of cider and spirits from all the...

12 Hours in Cowichan: The Ultimate Day Trip

Sunday, September 2, 2018

12 HOURS IN COWICHAN: THE PERFECT DAY TRIP

Life is busy, and we know that taking time for fun and adventure can often take a backseat. Well, we’re here to help. If you need a break but don’t have a week or even a weekend, consider taking a day trip to Cowichan. It’s less than an hour from Victoria and Nanaimo, and we might be a little bit biased, but we think it’s amazing. One of the best parts: It makes a perfect day trip. Here’s how to relax, explore, and enjoy 12 hours in the beautiful Cowichan Valley.  

9:00 am: Shawnigan House Coffee Shop and Oma’s Bakery Location (Picture Credit Instagram @livinghollisstyle) 

If you are heading North from Victoria or South from Nanaimo, start your journey around 8:00 am to arrive at the Shawnigan House Coffee Shop and Oma’s...