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  • Posted by Ryan in Theme Additions on

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Happy to Announce our Grilled Cheese-apolooza that began today and will continue through to National Grilled Cheese Day on Tuesday ( and maybe beyond?!) Specials available while supplies last- so get here fast to stake a claim to your favorite. We’ve got some classics and some new innovations this time around.cheesapolooza2016

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    The following Workshops are free and no registration is required, visit our events page for tickets to our other Spring Events like our Design & Drinks class and Fairy Gardening Workshop

    Saturday April 2: Free soil testing from 10AM-3PM

    Free Soil Testing for your garden and lawn. Come by with one or two dry samples of soil from areas of your garden you would like tested. John Howell of the New England Vegetable and Berry Association will be here to analyze your samples and help point you in a growing direction, and we will be here to help you pick up the lime, bone-meal, acidic fertilizer or whatever he suggests to you.workshopkids

    Saturday April 2:  10 AM – 3 PM Kids Gardening Workshop

    Join Michelle in the greenhouse for a special all day Kid’s Gardening Workshop while the soil testing is happening. Stop in between 10 and 3 to see what flowers are ready to go in the greenhouse and have your children work with Michelle as she talks to them about basic gardening techniques and what it takes to make a plant grow  and then has them plant a seed to take home and grow into their own flower or vegetable.

     

    Saturday April 9: 10 AM Wild Plant Walk with Herbalist Steph Zabel

    Join us for a stroll around the farm to learn how to identify common plants that have been used in traditional herbalism for centuries. Our outing will explore the medicinal and edible use of these local herbs, how to identify and harvest them, and ways to use them as foods or beverages. Many of these often-overlooked plants may surprise you with their health benefits!

    • Steph Zabel, MSc, is an herbalist and botanical educator based in Somerville, MA. For over a decade she has combined her passions for herbalism, education, and community outreach. She holds a Master’s degree in ethnobotany and began her professional career working in the botanical collections of the Harvard University Herbaria. Her work focuses on teaching practical & inspiring herbal classes and offering dynamic wellness sessions. Steph is also the founder of HERBSTALK, Boston’s vibrant community herbal conference, through which she creates accessible educational opportunities for all plant enthusiasts.
    www.flowerfolkherbs.comherbstalk
    www.herbstalk.org
    mikes raised bed

    Saturday April 16: 10 AM Raised Bed Gardening with Mike Mcdermott

    Want a garden in your yard but not sure about the soil quality? Maybe the sunny side of your house is mostly paved. Maybe you just like the clean architecture of a framed and defined space. Raised Bed Gardening might be right for you. Join Mike, who constructed many of the large wooden planters around the farmstand, as he takes you through the basic benefits and limitations of raised bed planting, how to construct and maintain them and how to efficiently use the space you create by choosing plants and spacing that works in a confined area.

    Click here for the Materials and Cut Lists from the class!

    beetalkSaturday April 23: 10 AM Protect the Bees Pollinator Workshop with Jenni Wharff.

    Jenni will highlight the current state of pollinators (honey bees in particular) and then go over ways to help the population, and pollinator friendly plants.

    • Gardens by Jenni is committed to raising awareness of problems facing our bees! We want to show you how easy it can be to garden for the bees! GBJ provides organic, heirloom, and pesticide free herbs, vegetables, and flowers (native and non-native) in order to promote healthy food resources that our bees deeply need. Email gardensbyjenni@gmail.com for seedlings, bee habitat assessments, pollinator friendly garden installations, and pollinator gardening advice.Helping you bee friendly with Giftable Gardens, Pollinator-Garden Consulting, and Bee Habitat Assessments for every kind of space! Organic & Pesticide free – from Gardens by Jenni

     

    IMG_4499Saturday April 30th: 10 AM Container Gardening with Dianne Porcello

    Still our most popular workshop every spring, Dianne walks you through the steps of choosing a container and the basic pieces of creating a mobile beauty for your deck or patio garden. A container is a great way to showcase a favorite plant or draw attention to an overlooked part of your garden. Stop in to learn about pot size and shape, soil and fertilizer requirements, and the general artistic element  and theory behind creating a world-class container.

     

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    Posted by Ryan in Theme Additions on

    designdrinks1

    Our series of Design & Drinks Events continues with a Spring Container Workshop on April 9. Please consider joining us in the greenhouse to shake off the winter blues and prepare a pot ready to drop on your front porch right away! We will have a selection of spring hardy plants to choose from, dependent on the best available to us at the time, but will likely include, forced spring bulbs, early perennials, pansies and violas. You will have (3-6) plants in your pot depending on the sizes you choose. You will have your choice of a plastic clay-colored 12 inch Patio Pot or a fiber pot meant to drop into the popular cast iron urns that many households have on their front entry. We also offer a vast selection of larger and fancier containers, metal, wooden, clay, porcelain in all imaginable sizes and invite you to look at these in our shop. We will offer you the ability to upgrade your container to one of these during the workshop as well as add additional plant if you choose to.

    These pots will be bursting with color and sure to brighten your doorstep until the real warm months finally come along. Our designers, Dianne and Linda will be leading the workshop and helping you select and put together. This workshop will be held in the afternoon, with light refreshments. As usual a wine option will be available, you may purchase that with your ticket now, or on site day of for $10 additional.
    Additionally we offer free workshops all through the month of April including a free Spring Container Workshop on the best new options for creating a container garden in the spring, and this years will be held April 30 at 10 am. That workshop is free, but attendees do not get to build a container during it, it is only for demonstration and inspiration.

     

    For Tickets Click Here

    ticketslug

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    Posted by Ryan in Theme Additions on

    wine-tasting

    Please join us in the greenhouse for our 3rd annual Grand Wine Tasting, this March 19th from 1-4 pm. The event is free and will feature wines from a wide variety of locations around the globe. Talk with the distributors and wine-making representatives about what makes each of these wines perfect for your Easter table, spring picnic or summer barbecue. Enjoy larger bulk discounts all day Saturday on 6 or more bottles. Eleven reps will be present tasting 4 or more wines each, so there will be something for everyone. We will also be joined by a number of local cheese artisans, offering something to taste with your sips.

    Please bring valid ID to enjoy your time in the warm flower filled greenhouse with us. Valid id includes those 21+with US passport, US military ID, MA drivers licence, MA liquor ID, or MA state ID.

    Guests expected to attend so far include:

    • Jasper Hill Farm

    • Cato Corner Farm

    • Culture Magazine

    •  Shy Brothers

    • Grey Barn

    grand wine tasting

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    Posted by Ryan in Theme Additions on

    fastpassRosies flyer2016

     

    Volante Farms Brings Fresh Approach to Food Drive

    Needham, MA  March 2016  Volante Farms is excited to announce the return of their groundbreaking fresh food drive – Rally for Rosie’s Place – a month long effort to provide nutritious vegetables and fruit to those in need of help with their groceries.

    For the thousands of poor and homeless women Rosie’s Place serves each year, impossible choices among food, rent, medication and heat are commonplace. When groceries are an option, nutritional value usually takes a back seat to cost since healthy food choices are often more expensive.

    During the last six growing seasons, Volante Farms has partnered with Rosie’s Place in their commitment to provide substantial and nutritious meals to their guests. Patricia Jones, Food Pantry Manager, explains, “For more than 40 years, Rosie’s Place has provided a safe and nurturing environment for poor and homeless women to maintain their dignity, seek opportunity and find security in their lives. Our food programs further our mission by giving our guests access to fresh, healthy, and nutritious food that is too often simply not an option for families struggling to make ends meet.”

    While Rosie’s Place has had great success partnering with Volante’s and other local farms during the warmer months, there is an expressed lack of fresh food donations available to them during the winter. Volante’s is looking to once again change this for the entire month of March!

    Here is how the month long effort will work. For the last two  weekends in March (March 19-20 and 26 ), Volante’s is encouraging the community to visit the Farm and donate fresh produce from the market at the register. No gift is too small…a single piece of fruit improves the quality of a meal. The donations will be kept in refrigerated chests until they are tallied and delivered the following Monday morning. These totals will be used during the first and second weeks of April, when Volante’s will match pound for pound every customer donation!

    During last year’s drive, shoppers donated over 350 pounds of nourishing vegetables and fruit. Coupled with the Volante’s match, Rosie’s Place received over $1300 worth of healthy food during a difficult time of year when donations are at a low and utility bills are high!

    The public is asked to help strengthen this tradition by donating at the Farm and spreading the word to your friends, school and community groups. For more information please contact Teri Volante Boardman or Ryan Conroy at Volante Farms (www.volantefarms.com), 292 Forest Street, Needham MA, 02492, 781-444-2351 or info@volantefarms.com and Katie Amoro at Rosie’s Place (www.rosiesplace.org), 889 Harrison Avenue, Boston MA, 02118 or

    617-442-9322.

    Posted by Ryan in Theme Additions on

    Please join us in the greenhouse for our 3rd annual Grand Wine Tasting, this March 19th from 1-4 pm. The event is free and will feature wines from a wide variety of locations around the globe. Talk with the distributors and wine-making representatives about what makes each of these wines perfect for your Easter table, spring picnic or summer barbecue. Enjoy larger bulk discounts all day Saturday on 6 or more bottles. Eleven reps will be present tasting 4 or more wines each, so there will be something for everyone. We will also be joined by a number of local cheese artisans, offering something to taste with your sips.

    Please bring valid ID to enjoy your time in the warm flower filled greenhouse with us. Valid id includes those 21+with US passport, US military ID, MA drivers licence, MA liquor ID, or MA state ID.

    Guests expected to attend so far include:

    • Jasper Hill Farm

    • Cato Corner Farm

    • Culture Magazine

    •  Shy Brothers

    • Grey Barn

    grand wine tasting

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    Posted by Ryan in Theme Additions on

    craft-beersPlease join us in the Greenhouse, February 27th from 1-4 when we sample dozens of craft brews and ciders from our talented makers from near and far. Representatives from the following distributors, breweries and cider houses will be here ready to share their stories while you sample their beverages. Please have valid ID, and of course this event is free.

    • Anderson Valley

    • Ballast Point

    • Bantam Cider

    • Baxter

    • Berkshire

    • Blue Hills

    • Brewmaster Jack

    • Cambridge Brewing

    • Carr’s Cider

    • Citizen Cider

    • Dogfish Head

    • Down East Cider

    • Element

    • Ipswich

    • Jack’s Abby

    • Lord Hobo

    • MBA/ Castle Island

    • Newburyport Brewing

    • Notch

    • Shacksbury Cider

    • Spencer

    • Stormalong Cider

    • Two Roads

    • Woodstock Inn

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    Posted by Ryan in Theme Additions on

    IMG_2642

    Seats Available Now for our Saturday afternoon cooking classes this winter,

    February 6 and March 5th at 1:30 pm

    Each will feature several dishes, which chef Todd will lead you through the steps of preparing, and then have available for you to sample. There is an option to have wine paired with the tastings.

    Seats are $50, $65 with wine and may be purchased online by clicking the date you wish below:

    cooking class cookinclassmarch5

    Posted by Ryan in Theme Additions on

    bobs turkey logoVolante Farms is pleased to be offering a limited number of turkeys from Bob’s Turkey Farm in Lancaster MA this season for Thanksgiving. These are the same turkeys previously carried by Owen’s Poultry Farm around the corner and are no-hormones no-antibiotics all natural product.  Our turkeys are available in various ranges from 14 to over 30 pounds. All turkeys will be $4/lb.

    About Bob’s Turkey Farm turkeys:

    “Our turkeys are a Broad Breasted White Turkey originating in Andover, MA. We breed, raise, and slaughter all of our own turkeys here in Lancaster. All of our turkeys are fed a well balanced grain diet. We also use a preventative feed for the first four weeks of life. This gives our birds a healthy start before they transition to natural nutrients. Our birds are grown in barns and outdoor pens, free to move around as they wish.”

    As this is our first year of carrying turkeys we are going to start small by offering a very limited number of birds. We will be accepting orders until November 9th or until we fill our quota for orders. Orders may be placed in person with select kitchen staff or over the phone at extension 123. No turkey is guaranteed until confirmed by us.

    The cutoff for turkey orders is November 9th or while they last whichever comes first. Sides, which may be ordered separately as well, must be ordered by Wednesday the 18th at 5 pm.

    If you would like to reserve a bird, please call us or stop in soon to talk to our kitchen staff. We are no longer accepting orders online as we are nearly sold out.

    We will give you the option of placing an order for  prepared side dishes when we talk with you, so be sure to take a look at our Thanksgiving Menu to see what other tasty vegetables and grains we have available to make your dinner a breeze.

     

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    Posted by Ryan in Theme Additions on
    1st Place Pie! - Malin Limaj

    1st Place Pie!

     

    Winner!

    Winner- Malin Limaj!

    Beginner’s Luck very likely plays a role in many of our kitchens frequently, but when it comes to baking, there is a lot to be said for the old adage “Practice makes Perfect”.

    This year’s winner had a little from column A and a little from column B. Malin Limaj is one of our youngest ever contestants, so I’m guessing a bit a of a novice at the whole pie baking thing. But having baked two pies in less than 24 hours of the contest, she was good and limbered up. With a first pie having “failed” completely according to her mother, they made a last minute run back to Volante Farms at 9 am on Saturday morning to re-up their supplies of Granny Smith and Baldwin apples. With a brand new pie in hand and a HOT label on it they made it in to the judges table just in the nick of time with their new pie and whether it was the panic or the perseverance or the piping hot steam, the judges named it their favorite! Winning them over as the the 21st entrant in a line of 22 pies means it must have done quite a lot right.

    Malin took home a very hefty $150 Volante Farms gift certificate for her hard work as well as a very special trophy. Perhaps most coveted she earned that spot on the judging panel for next year’s contest. The top contestants also received very special chocolate and caramel covered apples from Sonny of Sonny’s Sweets, one of our esteemed judges. Sonny was joined on the panel this year by our own pastry chef Jen Heberlein and last year’s winner Nicole.

    Malin’s Pie had a rather classic lattice top which was popular this year. Lattice is great if your apples are on the juicier side as there is more room for the moisture to evaporate, but for drier fruit you want to watch the moisture retention qualities of a solid top.

    Our second place pie this year by Heather Adams was, I believe, one of our highest performing crumb topped pies to date. It especially benefited from a jolt of sweetness from the caramel topping on top of the crumb. Heather received a $75 gift card to the farm as well as a gourmet apple from Sonny.

    3rd place was a tie between two other Apple Pie variations: Ruth Mahoney’s Old Fashioned Apple Pie and Jane Harvey’s Swedish Apple Pie.  Both of them were recipients of a $35 Gift Card and some solid bragging rights.

    Best Presentation this year went to Jeff Cruzan. His pie was rather simple at first glance, yet somehow impossibly tall and beautifully symmetrical. He received a $20 Gift Card for his attention to detail.

    These top 5 pies are show below with their recipes, as well as a youtube slideshow of the entire event. Thanks to all of our contestants, judges, and customers who joined us for this event. This is always a great way to kick off the holiday baking season, and while we still have over 30 apple varieties available take the opportunity soon to get in some practice baking on your own.

    For the record the winning varieties this year were Granny Smith, Baldwin, Cortland, Rome, Macoun, & Monroe. Cortland are still the bakers’ favorite appearing in over 40% of this year’s pies.

    Malin Limaj Pie Recipe 2ndplaceapplepie20153rdplacetieapple2015.ruthmahoney3rd place tie pie 2015. harvey
    jeff cruzan.best presentation pie 2015