We have been out in the forest, poking about and exploring. What fun it is to discover the young shoots underneath last year’s growth or find the sprouts of familiar plants. The birds are returning too. A flock of sandhill cranes flies above but we can only hear their trickling sound as they fly northward. Spring is here and we are foraging for small delights in the forest: stinging nettle tops sit just above the damp floor, moss so intricate that it could hold a world of its own. And, best of all we make a discovery underneath the cured marsh grass lies mint shoots white from lack of sun but sweet and minty. What fun to follow the smell of last year’s mint plant to its base underneath the grass and make this connection to the senses: taste, sight, smell, touch.
The hopyard is brimming too with spring life and discoveries. In Belgium this time is about ‘white gold’ and we seek the young hop shoots yet to surface. They are so delicate – they define the word ‘delicacy’.
And food is the same personal journey of senses and discovery. The delicacies we harvested make their debut in Vancouver this week. Under the expert hands of Chef Andrew Winfield, River Café brings the prairie land flavours to meet the ocean in two collaboration events highlighting sustainable food. We proudly pass on the journey started in the forest and hopyard of Windhover to the tables of the fine west coast.