Nelson Brewing Company's Harvest moon will be sure to quench your thirst on a hot spring or summer day.

Celebrating spring in the Kootenays

Spring is coming to the Kootenays which means fresh veggies and good drinks.

Tis the season… no not Christmas. I’m talking about spring.

This is primetime for foodies, cooks and gardeners. The sun is shining more and more, and temperatures are rising.

Over the next few weeks as you head out to some of the local grocery stores like the Kootenay Co-op, Ellison’s and Save-on Foods you’re going to see more and more fresh salad greens, asparagus, lettuces, bok choy and radishes.

Endless Harvest – the area’s local organic food delivery people – will be seeing more local produces from Salmo, Creston and Grand Forks as the weather warms.

A lot of produce will still be making the trip from the coast until it really warms up in June and July, but we will be able to enjoy lots of tasty local greens.

If you really want to go local, consider getting down in the dirt and planting your own garden.

Ellison’s has a huge selection of seeds including those from Westcoast Seeds.

There are also live plants like live basil and tomato plants.

Spring also means halibut season at the Fisherman’s Market, who are currently holding a big halibut sale.

Beautiful BC spot prawns will soon be appearing the case as well.

If you’re looking at expanding your seafood horizons consider sablefish varieties like ling and black cod.

As we spend more and more time on the patios hosting barbeques or just enjoying a quiet afterwork drink consider some of these great cocktail ideas from the New Grand Liquor Store. Instead of the traditional mimosa try the Frogoli Passion. Infused with hand picked strawberries, Frogoli is an Italian strawberry liqueur, that when mixed with a nice Prosecco, or any other sparkling wine or champagne, makes a wonderful light concoction.

The Lone Ranger mixes a beautiful old growth orchard dry apple cider by Lonetree with any fruit flavoured Creme de Casis, Marie Blizzard or Pama Pomegranate liqueur in a tall glass with ice. It doesn’t get much better.

Finally, nothing is better than the classic mojito. Squeeze fresh lime juice into a glass full of crushed ice, add mint leaves, add at least 1 tsp. of sugar, add either or an ounce of vodka or rum, mix well, garnish with mint leaf.

If you’d rather have a beer, Nelson Brewing Company has a variety of beers that will quench your thirst this spring and summer.

NBC’s award winning light kolsch style beer Harvest Moon goes well with a lighter appetizers and salads.

If you’re looking for a beer to pair with your steak or lamb try After Dark or a light malty Wild Honey organic ale which is not sweet but has hints of organic honey super good with sticky glazed ribs or BBQ burgers.

If you’re globe trotting with your foods NBC suggests their Paddywhack organic IPA which works really well with international food items that are big on flavour, spice and heat.

A beer that will go well with your halibut or spot prawns is the Blackheart Oatmeal stout and for those sudden cold spring days try or heart stews on those occasional rainy days.

NBC will also be celebrating the 15th anniversary of the Shambhala Music Festival with the release of one or two specialty beers the Shambhalager. This light lager will cleanse the palate of all the sweat and dirty dancing at this year’s festival.

Served exclusively at Mike’s place, NBC is calling this the after Shambhala beer garden area because as you know this festival is non-alcohol. The 20 keg batch will go quick to quench the thirst.

For the downtown Marketfest NBC will be releasing a new brew 32 keg batch of citrusy, smooth coarse filtered wheat beer at the Royal exclusively. the perfect pair for a sunny deck and flipflops.

If you can’t find what you need at NBC, they recommend checking you the Vancouver Island brewery Philips.

No barbeque is complete — at least for  us meat eaters — without a steak, burger or handmade sausages.

Railway Meats is a local favourite for sausages and also has a variety of pork, chicken, beef and more that will please everyone at your barbeque.

As you turn on the barbeque this summer and gather your friends and family, share your recipes and pictures with us on your Facebook page or via email at



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