Let me preface this post by saying that we don’t get out to Abbotsford much. I used to be really into airplanes when I was a kid, and my dad would bring me to the Abbotsford International Air Show. Besides going there a handful of times over the past few years for media events, it’d generally be the sign that you pass on Highway 1 westbound when you’re driving back from the Okanagan that signifies that you’re almost back to civilization, and that you should probably gas up because it’s cheaper there than in the city.
In recent years, I’ve definitely been hearing more buzz about Abbotsford, whether it’s the annual Abbotsford Bloom Tulip Festival, or the growing craft beer and wine scene, or the Circle Farm Tour, it seems like there’s more and more to love about the municipality that’s only an hour drive away.
I was recently invited to the Under the Harvest Moon event at Eco Dairy, the first demonstration dairy farm of its kind in Canada. Developed in partnership with Science World, they offer a highly interactive learning environment where you can explore, experience, discover, and learn all about agriculture. It was the perfect setting for this lovely event, which showcased many of the local small businesses that make up Abbotsford’s community. The highlight of the evening for me was definitely watching the sunset while flying over Abbotsford in a helicopter provided by Compass Heli Tours. Local breweries Field House Brewing, Ravens Brewing Company, Hathi, and Old Abbey Ales kept the beers flowing throughout the evening, while Ripples Winery and Singletree Winery were there to keep the wine lovers content. Some standouts were Old Abbey Ales’ Sour Raspberry, which was surprisingly good being not too fruity and not too sour. Singletree’s Grüner Veltliner, which is a unique varietal that I had never tried before, was refreshingly smooth and well-balanced. Food was provided by Restaurant 62, and they prepared an amazing lentil dish topped with Yarrow duck, which I found shockingly delicious considering that I don’t even like lentils. Harvest Grill ‘n Greens had delicious pork ribs infused with a spicy Ponzu BBQ sauce that kept me coming back for seconds, thirds, and well, you get the idea.
After spending the night at the Best Western, we embarked on our day adventure which included stops at Duft & Co. Bakehouse for breakfast, Brodeurs Bistro for lunch, and an afternoon coffee at Oldhand Coffee.
We also found time to head over to Taves Family Farms, which is a great place to bring the family. Fall is the best season to visit the farm, with freshly-roasted and buttered corn-on-the-cob, U-Pick apples, a corn maze, petting barn, hayrides, a cider mill, and more! Our daughter sure had a lot of fun bouncing on the big outdoor jumping pillow too.
So please do yourself a favour and head out to Abbotsford one of these days, especially if it’s been awhile and you’re looking to spend the day enjoying some good food, beer and wine, or hit up some family-friendly farms. There’s probably more to do there than you think!