It all started in 2008, the year we rented bees to pollinate our trees. We were fascinated as the bees buzzed around in their highly organized social dances, pollinating the apple blossoms to grow our beautiful fruit.
I was hooked and so decided to learn more from the amazing “Bee Doctor,” Chris Harp. The following year, with that knowledge, we started our own bee-adventure. Westwind Orchard is now home to Italian and Russian bee colonies (very respectable lineages!) that flit and buzz and pollinate all the flowers – not just apples – that grace our wonderful farm.
We respect our bees’ hard work (there is lots to do in as well as outside the hive). And if we are lucky to experience a swarm – an amazing event to witness – we’ll try to capture the swarm to make a new colony. But if we don’t: oh well! That’s more for Mother Nature. And yes, we do collect and sell their honey, but we also leave plenty for them to survive on through the winter. You see, bees survive the winter on the fruits of their labor (honey) from the previous season. Without a food source they might die or at best be very weak the following spring. Although we could give them “bee food,” we prefer to treat our bees naturally and organically like everything else at Westwind Orchard and so we give them ample organic flowering cover crops to forage on. And no, we don’t forbid them to go and pollinate other farms ……they are free spirits, after all. All of the honey we sell is raw and unprocessed.
Westwind Orchard’s “Sciroppo d’acero,” or maple syrup, is extracted from 100-year-old silver, red and sugar maple trees scattered throughout the property. Made from sap collected on the edge of late winter, its condensed on a wood-fired evaporator, bottled, and waxed to ensure quality and freshness. It is without a doubt incredible on pancakes and waffles, but it can also be used in savory culinary sauces, baked goods, cocktails, or tea. Store in a cool dark place and refrigerate after it is opened to prevent spoilage.
Our all-natural Maple Syrup is aged in White Oak Bourbon barrels from local craft distilleries before being bottled. The aging process gives our maple syrup a distinctive, rich flavor with notes of vanilla, caramel and oak. It is always in very limited production, so each bottle is unique and numbered. We produce only 89 bottles every year. Store in a cool dark place and refrigerate after it is opened to prevent spoilage.
We’re not sure whether it was the egg or the chicken that came first. All we know is that our chickens produce the best eggs we’ve come across – or so we’ve been told. They are highly independent, free range, and naturally raised on orchard grasses, organic grain, and Westwind Orchard windfalls. Producing tall, dark orange yolks and tight whites – our eggs are second to none and certainly not a dime a dozen.
Available for purchase in the farm store.
Who would have thought something so simple, could taste so good? Made from a blend of our handpicked organic heirloom apples, they are slowly simmered and crafted to become Nonna Dora’s applesauce. Westwind Orchard apple sauce is delicious as a snack or alongside a roast. Store in a cool dark place and refrigerate after it is opened to prevent spoilage.
Smuckers ain’t got nothing on us. Nonna Pia’s “marmellata di lamponi” starts with handfuls of our handpicked organic raspberries that then are cooked with lemon and sugar for a delectably rustic treat on toast or the most decadent PB&J you’ve ever had. Store in a cool dark place and refrigerate after it is opened to prevent spoilage.
Nonna Pia’s “marmellata di mele e rosmarino” is crafted from our handpicked heirloom organic apples, rosemary, sugar and lemon. Amazingly delicious alongside – or right on top of – charcuterie and cheese. Store in a cool dark place and refrigerate after it is opened to prevent spoilage.
Zing, zang, zoom! Our raspberry chili jam is crafted from handpicked organic raspberries and homegrown chili peppers for the perfect balance of tart and spicy heat. This jam will liven up your morning toast or favorite croissant to get your day off to a great start. Store in a cool dark place and refrigerate after it is opened to prevent spoilage.
Julia’s “marmellata di mele, pere e zucche” is crafted from our handpicked heirloom organic apples, pears, butternut squash, sugar, lemons and ginger. This jam spices up any dish when used as a savory sauce or glaze. Store in a cool dark place and refrigerate after it is opened to prevent spoilage.
Julia’s “marmellata di pomodoro affumicato” is crafted from our organic heirloom tomatoes, apples, sugar, lemon juice, kosher smoky salt, sweet paprika, black pepper and hot chili flakes. Cooked for hours to develop a deep, intensely flavorful jam. Store in a cool dark place and refrigerate after it is opened to prevent spoilage.
Hard Cider is the newest addition to our lineup. We’re been working closely with local cider experts to develop a hard cider that represents the spice and exuberance of Westwind Orchard…and we’re finally there. In June we’ll unveil two types of hard cider: Classic and Raspberry. The Classic is a classic North American style cider – dry with just a hint of soft tannins and sweetness for mouthfeel and robust flavor profile. The Raspberry a off-dry cider with a dash of raspberry from our fields for just a bitter more tartness and zing.
This apple cider vinegar is made from cider made from our organic apples. Once it is ready, we infuse it with organic raspberries grown right here and age it in glass carboys for four weeks before we bottle and wax seal it just for you. Splash it in a savory sauce, spice up your favorite cocktail, or take just a teaspoon for whatever ails you.
This apple cider vinegar is made from cider made from our organic apples. Once its ready, we infuse it with honey made by our bees and age it in glass carboys for four weeks before we bottle and wax seal it just for you. Splash it in a savory sauce, spice up your favorite cocktail, or take just a teaspoon for whatever ails you.
The sweetest collection of farm-fresh chocolate made with Westwind Orchard raspberries, pumpkins, chilies and apples – each a very different and yet delightful snack in their own right.
Puchase online using the links below:
There’s a lot of time in the winter to contemplate next season, so I like to make cutting boards. Our boards are individually handcrafted from Black Walnut, Maple, Oak and Cherry trees sustainably harvested right here on the farm. Each is made from a single solid piece of wood and uniquely shaped from what the tree gives us. It is coated with three layers of food-grade mineral oil and a final coat of our Wood Butter. Are they art or utilitarian? We’ll let you decide.
Our Wood Butter is a blend of food-grade white mineral oil and beeswax from our very own honeybees. You can’t eat it, but it is essential for extending the longevity of wood kitchen utensils, cutting boards and furniture.