Welcome to the countryside just east of Toronto. This area is renowned for exceptional farm-to-table culinary experiences. But why?
You’ve probably heard of the farm-to-table movement. Sometimes known as #F2T or farm-to-fork, this movement began in the 1970s and 1980s. The concept is that eating locally-sourced, natural and organic foods is better for you, better for the local community, and better for the environment than eating heavily processed or distantly shipped foods. The movement has exploded to the point where you can find farm-to-table restaurants across Ontario.
But why is there such a great farm-to-table scene here in Kawarthas Northumberland?
It’s the down-to-earth relationships between producers and chefs that yield farm-to-table tastes worth raving about. The food is real because it is created as a result of real relationships and knowledge-sharing between talented chefs and local producers. In some places you even get the opportunity to take home some of that remarkable knowledge with you by experiencing a cooking workshop.
Profile: South Pond Farms
This strong sense of community is something you’ll experience with all your senses when visiting South Pond Farms. “I am committed,” says creator and owner Danielle French, “to bringing people together to experience the land and enjoy authentic food from the farm and local area. Respect for the land and the highest quality food are the threads woven through all the experiences that I create.”
Like so many scenic locations in the Kawartha Lakes, South Pond Farms is perfectly situated as the gathering place for an authentic farm-to-table community experience. South Pond Farms is surrounded by farms and a skilled community of local producers.
The beautiful barn serves as a comfortable gathering space. It’s a stylish 21st century take on the authentic Ontario tradition of using a barn as a place to host not only the harvest but also to celebrate the people and relationships that transform the harvest into a delicious culinary experience.
In 2015 Chef Kevin McKenna joined the talented family at South Pond Farms. Chef McKenna trained at the prestigious Niagara-on-the-Lake Culinary School and he has travelled the world working in internationally recognized restaurants.
Chef McKenna’s passion for farm-to-table cuisine shows in his expertise in wild foraging, the relationships he’s built with local farmers, and not least his remarkable ability to create absolutely beautiful and delicious farm-to-table taste experiences. It truly is a hidden gem that you can book a small-group cooking workshop with both Danielle and Chef McKenna!
Meet the People behind our Farm to Table Experiences
South Pond Farms is one of several amazing FeastON Certified destinations in Kawarthas Northumberland. FeastON certified businesses are committed to procuring local, Ontario food and drink as much as possible and to championing the appreciation of seasonally-based culinary experiences. You can see all our FeastON culinary destinations by clicking here.
Here are some of the key providers for South Pond Farms:
- Lunar Rhythm Gardens
- CIPM Grains
- Crosswind Farms
- Chasing the Cheese
- Linwood Acres Trout Farm
- Nesbitt’s Meat Market
- Primal Cuts
- Traynor Beef Farm
Get your “Perfect Weekend” Trip Itinerary.
If you’re planning a trip to experience a workshop or event at South Pond Farms, enjoy a beautiful night at the boutique bed & breakfast Stillwater on the Lake at the southern tip of Chemong Lake. (Get other local accommodations recommendations from Danielle by clicking here or reach out to Peterborough & the Kawarthas for more recommendations.) The day before or after your workshop, drive into Peterborough to enjoy another FeastON certified taste of place at the Publican House, Peterborough’s Premium Craft Brewery and Restaurant. Pair that stop with a visit (and perhaps a unique workshop) at the Canadian Canoe Museum (home of the world’s largest collection of canoes and kayaks). If you’re a fan of great brews, you can try the Publican House’s Paddler’s Ale, made in partnership with the Canadian Canoe Museum!
The image above will take you to a custom itinerary on our handy Trip Planner. You can add these items one-by-one as you wish to build your own “perfect weekend” trip list and use it for driving directions.
Perfect your weekend with some of these experiences:
- Check out one of the many gorgeous local art galleries, perhaps Galerie Q. Click here to see their online store, which feature stunning collections of Quebecois painting.
- Experience beading or wet felt scarf workshop at the Canadian Canoe Museum.
- Stop by Haute Goat to play with their adorable Nigerian Dwarf goats and trying some premium goat milk goodies and skin care products. They are open Wednesdays through Sundays from 10am – 4pm.
- Enjoy a peaceful walk in beautiful Port Hope and a FeastON certified dinner at The Social Bar and Table.
Photos provided by South Pond Farms with credit to Kim Magee Photography and New Vintage Media.