From October 14 to 16, the Salt Spring Harvest Food & Drink Festival (also known in past years as Sip & Savour Salt Spring Festival) brings together growers, food providers and chefs from Salt Spring Island and partners them with local craft brewers and vintners representing the wine growing regions of British Columbia.
Salt Spring Island is home to many small family farms, artisan food providers and a fishing community which provide a plentiful harvest of fresh, delicious fruits and vegetables, breads and cheeses, famous Salt Spring lamb, farm-raised heritage breeds of pork and chickens, as well as daily catches of crab, mussels and oysters. So it is little surprise the Island is known as a foodie paradise!
Surrounding Salt Spring Island are the nearby southern Gulf Islands, the fertile Cowichan Valley, the bountiful Saanich Peninsula and the other southern Gulf Islands all of which share a similar climate, soils and love of the land and sea.
In addition to wonderful local food, the area is home to the outstanding wines of the ‘Wine Islands' region. During the festival, these are featured together with representation from other wine regions of B.C. and some of the finest Vancouver Island craft beer.
On Friday evening, local restaurants and farms will be hosting Harvest Dinners where the talent of chefs will combine with locally produced ingredients in seasonally inspired menus. Wine and beer selections will be paired with specific courses, either in set menus or as you choose.
The culinary adventure continues on Saturday starting at 9 a.m. with the famous Salt Spring Saturday Market, where everything is grown, harvested, created and made on Salt Spring Island. The Market will be brimming with fresh, local fall produce and grains grown in the unique island micro-climate.
Wine lovers won't want to miss is the Harvest Grape Stomp at Salt Spring Vineyards on Saturday and Sunday, October 15-16.
Get the lay of the land with a pre-Harvest Festival visit earlier in the month to the Annual Salt Spring Apple Festival, taking place on Sunday, October 2. Salt Spring Island grows over 450 varieties of apples organically, with an apple history dating back to 1860. Tour various farms, connect with local growers and attend the main event at Fulford Hall. Learn more at: www.saltspringapplefestival.org.
While always welcoming, many of Salt Spring Island's hotels, resorts and B&B's will be greeting guests with special weekend accommodation rates. Hastings House Country House Hotel is hosting a Thanksgiving Dinner on October 9 as well as a four-course Harvest to Table Dinner paired with selections from BC wineries on October 8.