Thursday, May 31, 2012

a perennial favourite

It's become one of my favourite rites of spring: the Fredericton Botanic Garden annual plant sale.   Last Sunday after platefuls of eggs and hummus and our favourite quattros and rodrigos at Cedar Tree Cafe, Denis and I headed to the Boyce Farmers Market for the sale.   While I love my planters of colourful annuals, perennials are the "set it and forget it" plants of the garden and this sale is a great chance to pick these up at a low cost.  An added bonus is the chance to chat with some of the city's most avid and knowledgeable gardening enthusiasts.  And the proceeds from the sale go to the ongoing development of the Botanic Garden.

Interestingly, the smart phone has become the must have plant sale accessory among younger attendees.   Saw more than a few people looking up various plants on their iPhones to determine if a plant was a good match for their garden.

The annual sale may be over but there's still an opportunity to take advantage of the garden know-how of the FBG folks with their Talks in the Garden. Here are the sessions I'm looking forward to:
  • June 21, 2012: "Cooking with Herbs" by Marg Routledge.
  • August 16, 2012: "Eating and Preserving Local Produce", by Margaret Langille.
  • September 20, 2012: "Storing Vegetables for Winter Use", by Karen Davidge.
  • October 18, 2012: "Forcing bulbs Indoors for Spring Bloom", by Mary Pugh.  
And I'm crossing my fingers for some good weather next week to take a wander through the gardens and snap some shots particularly of the rhododendrons.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

like buttah

When it comes to experiments in the kitchen, I prefer minimal effort for maximum results (see last week's homemade ricotta adventures).  And when these experiments involve a split second where one thing margically transforms into something else, so much the better.

On Saturday after a morning of errands at the Boyce Farmer's Market, Aura Whole Foods and Victory Meat market, I decided to spend some time in the kitchen before heading into the garden to finish planting the veg.   Ninety minutes later I had a couple of bars of lavender soap, a batch of chem-free Henry-friendly bug spray, hibiscus syrup for drinks (based on the lavender syrup here) and two containers of butter and a cup or so of buttermilk.

If you've followed my blog for any amount of time you know that I like old-timey things.  One of the happiest weeks of my childhood was spent here where I willingly swept out stables at dawn and slept on a straw tick mattress. 

So when my friend Jilanna sent me a blogpost that included a link to making your own butter I became possessed by the idea.  I used the recipe from eating from the ground up and I recommend reading Alana's post because she took more pictures than I did and also it's just very entertaining.  I particularly like that she is very pragmatic about the fact that we don't make butter at home because it is more economical.   It's about the satisfaction of making something yourself.  Also because it is delicious. And I'm willing to pay three bucks for that.

(Although on a practical note, I will say that it is sometimes easier to find heavy cream than unsalted butter in this city so there is definitely a good reason to know how to do this.)

So here is the big trick to making butter at home.

1. Dump 16 oz of whipping cream and 1/2  a teaspoon of kosher salt into a mixing bowl.
2. Turn on the mixer.   I just used a hand-mixer which probably took a few more minutes than a Kitchen Aid stand mixer but was hardly onerous.
3. Watch and be amazed - first you'll get whipped cream (resist the temptation to make stop here and make shortcakes), then over-whipped cream (a kitchen tragedy we've all experienced) and then a few minutes later in a split second and like magic, it breaks and you suddenly find yourself with hunks of golden butter swimming in butter milk.Stop mixing.
4. Strain the buttermilk off into a jar for using in pancakes or biscuits.
5. Squeeze all the remaining buttermilk out of the butter.  Rinse in cold water and squeeze.  Repeat until all the buttermilk has been squeezed out.

I split my butter into two small wooden cheese boxes I had on hand.  I mixed one with chopped basil for an herb butter and one I left plain.  And that's all there is to it!

Monday, May 28, 2012


In the spring of 2011 I started making regular drives to the TNB Studio along Lincoln Road. I became intrigued by a round lattice gazebo and even more so by the trail that wound down past it and seemed to disappear into the river itself. Even though I'd lived in the city for 15 years, I'd never really noticed the trail before. 

What I was seeing was the Salamanca Trail. Beginning at Morell Park at the east end of Waterloo Row, the 1.2 km trail is an easy 10 minute stroll each way and ends at the Princess Margaret Bridge.

In October 1783, nearly 2000 Loyalists fleeing the American Revolution arrived to settle St. Anne's Point (what's now downtown Fredericton) "Salamanca" was the burial ground for those who did not survive the harsh northern winter. 
The nearly 230 year-old Loyalist Cemetery near the entrance of the path. 
Even though you are just metres from the backyards on the first stretch of Lincoln Road, this bucolic woodland path feels far removed from one of the city's busiest thoroughfares.
The low-lying area typically floods each spring leading to lush vegetation and towering trees that seem to spring from the river bed.  It's become one of my favourite short walks in the city.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

lavender lemonade

With the arrival of summer weather comes my need to always have a bottle of simple syrup in the refrigerator.  If you've ever experienced the frustration of trying to dissolve granulated sugar in a pitcher of iced tea you know this syrup is an absolute must for sweetening cold summer beverages.  (If you're avoiding white sugar, you can make this syrup with raw sugar, although you will get a darker colour.  A quick Google search should also provide the proportions if you wanted to do an agave or honey based syrup.)

On Sunday I became a little bit obsessed with the idea of doing a lavender infused simple syrup and then making lavender lemonade.  So I stopped by Aura Whole Foods on my way home from work yesterday and for a toonie I got enough lavender buds to make 3-4 batches of this syrup. In the time it took to cook up a pot of pasta for my supper, I had made a cup of dusty pink, lavender-infused simple syrup.  

(This  was so dead easy that I think I'll go back and get some hibiscus. Imagine a shocking pink syrup!

the how to
bring 1 cup of water and 3 tablespoons lavender buds to a boil.  Add 1 cup of sugar, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes occasionally giving the pot a gentle swirl.   Remove from heat and let cool slightly before straining the syrup.  I strained once through a fine mesh sieve and then a second time through a coffee filter.  Let cool completely.  This will yield about a cup of syrup.  It will keep in a sealed bottle for about a week. 

To make the lemonade, combine 2 parts water + 1 part freshly squeezed lemon juice +1 part simple syrup

Pimm's Cup:  What the mint julep is to the Kentucky Derby, this cocktail is to Wimbledon and polo matches.  The herbal lavender lemonade is a perfect complement to this gin-based liqueur.  In a tall glass pour 1.5-2 oz Pimm's No. 1 over ice, fill with lemonade.  Top with club soda if you want a little fizz and garnish with a slice of cucumber (the traditional way), a twist of lemon, a strawberry or a sprig of mint.  It's Pimm's O'Clock!

raspberry sorbet

Summer (or at least a very lovely late spring) seems fully upon us now and it's time to switch out the cool weather kitchen gadgets (goodbye for a few months, slow-cooker) for the warm weather tools (ice cream maker, I think I've missed you most of all!). 

While I'm looking forward to making a few batches of rich and decadent ice cream, I decided to start the season with something a little lighter (and to use up the end of last season's berry picking to make room in the freezer!).  So raspberry sorbet it was.

I've mentioned before on the blog how easy sorbet is.  This raspberry sorbet has only four ingredients - the most time-consuming part was waiting for the puree to strain completely. While I was standing in my sunny kitchen pressing the pureed raspberries through the strainer, I experienced a rush of memories of the fruits of last summers berry-picking adventures.  Coulis, cordials, sorbets...  Can't wait to do it all again!

the how-to

Heat 1 cup water and 1/2 cup sugar over medium heat until sugar is dissolved to create a simple syrup.  Puree syrup with 3-4 cups of raspberries.  Strain through fine mesh sieve.  Raspberry sorbet has such a stunning colour and raspberry seeds are such a pain that I strained this twice.  Stir in 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice or to taste and chill the mixture for at least an hour until cool.  Freeze in ice cream maker according to directions.

If you don't have an ice cream maker, don't worry.  You can make sorbet in the freezer just plan on it taking a little longer - this recipe gives you the how-to.

Is it even possible to make raspberry sorbet without humming a little of Prince's Raspberry Beret?

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

say cheese

I was watching an episode of Happy Endings (Year of Penny!) last week and Max was complaining about his hipster brother and his "ricotta-making wife."  And even though I know it wasn't supposed to inspire me, I was reminded through my laughter that I had a recipe for ricotta stuck to my kitchen idea board.  

Purists will tell you true ricotta is made from heating whey and separating the curds (I'm really starting to feel like Little Miss Muffet...) but this super simple at home method does the trick and certainly yields a result better than most of what you find in the supermarket and for a lower price and without the preservatives.

And it pretty much took me longer to tell you all this than it took to actually make fresh cheese at home.

the how to

heat 2 litres of 3.25% milk over medium heat, stirring frequently, until it starts to get steamy and foamy.  Resist the urge to hurry this along by raising the heat: scalded or boiled over milk is no one's friend.  Once heated, remove the pot from the heat and stir in 1/4 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice and 1/2 tsp of kosher salt (use kosher as iodine in table salt can react with the flavour) and let set for about two minutes as curds separate.   Strain the cheese using a  fine mesh strainer lined with two layers of cheesecloth. Ricotta can be kept sealed in the fridge for about a week.

To what degree you strain it is your choice.  As you can see from the photo above I went dry. I wanted it to be quite solid for tossing with Nashwaak noodles, baking into a leek and asparagus frittata etc.  If you want your ricotta to have a creamier, more spreadable texture you can stir in a little heavy cream or olive oil before using. (you could also toss in a few chopped fresh herbs!)  I stirred in a little Persian lime-infused olive oil and topped some flatbreads with ricotta, cherry tomatoes and basil - so delicious!

In related news - I hate paying $8 a tub for mascarpone cheese and it turns out making that at home is just as easy as the ricotta.  (And cheap at about $2 for a 375ml of cheese)

down on the farm

My first introduction to Gagetown Fruit Farm came last summer from their stall at the Boyce Farmers' Market and last fall my pumpkin-picking partner-in-crime Denis and I took a beautiful hour-long drive down river to Gagetown to visit the farm itself.  I love that in addition to bringing a variety of local farm products to our us, Heather and Matt think up lots of creative and fun ideas for bringing us to the farm.

This Sunday, in the middle of what was possibly the most perfect May long weekend weather-wise, they invited folks to come down to the farm to plant a pumpkin, take a wagon ride, wander the orchards, visit the baby animals and enjoy some of their delicious cooking.

When I arrived I ran into two young families I know who were each bringing their little ones to plant their first pumpkins.  We all agreed that we were pretty lucky to live in a place where within an hour of leaving the centre of the city you could revel in country life.  (And a few "For Sale" signs on the waterfront had us all pondering a more permanent escape to this pretty little town.)

Wagon rides through the apple orchards to the pumpkin patch.
The orchards were heavenly and the air heavy with the scent of apple blossoms.
Farmer in the dell: Goats, sheep, cows and I think there is even a duck in there too.
Kids feeding kids.
After wandering in the fresh air, a little snack is in order.
I will definitely be back to Gagetown Fruit Farm to pick some apples and a pumpkin or two this fall but I plan to also head back there this summer to enjoy some of Heather's culinary creations at their little restaurant.

Gagetown Fruit Farm is located at 30 Court House Road, Gagetown NB.  For info on their hours and upcoming events, check out their Facebook page.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

blossoms, dearie

Last evening for a few hours we had a respite from the rain and drizzle that's plagued us for the past 10 days or so.   It was still overcast but I grabbed my camera and walked the half block to Wilmot Park to take in the blossoms covering the trees along the pathways.  They were beautiful and fragrant and well worth aggravating my spring allergies.  I'm glad I took the opportunity as it's dark and rainy again today.
They Say It's Spring by Blossom Dearie on Grooveshark

I love this path from the east end of the park to the bandstand and in a couple of days it will be lined with crab apple blossoms.  Let's hope the rain stops soon!

Monday, May 14, 2012

run fredericton run!

This is my 16th spring living in Fredericton so its hard to believe that until yesterday I had never made it out to the Fredericton Marathon. I suppose it's not that hard to believe when you consider that a) I typically consider running something to be done only in the event of a zombie attack and b) marathon Sunday seemed unthinkable after a marathon Saturday night. 

However having fully transitioned from night owl to early bird in recent years, I was up bright and early yesterday to take a stroll down to Queen Square to cheer on a few of my good friends who were running the 10k.  

The weather was drizzly and the temperatures chilly but it was impossible not to feel energized by the nearly 1300 runners participating in the various events.

Ignore the time behind him - the chips don't lie!  He came in at 59:45
I had so much fun cheering on people I knew and even people I didn't!  And I was especially proud of two of my best friends.  This was Denis' second year running the 10k and he came in just under his goal of an hour. 
Jilanna and Denis celebrate a job well done.
Jilanna, whose journey over the past two years has been inspiring, finished her first 10k.  After dropping 70 pounds from 2010 to 2011, Jilanna took up running in the fall of 2011.  She ran her first 5k on New Year's Day in honour of her late uncle Brian and yesterday she completed her first 10k.  I was so happy to be able to be there to cheer her on!

Leaving Jilanna to celebrate with her very proud husband Dave and her family, Denis and I headed to Cedar Tree to warm up and toast his successful run with the good coffee and plates of eggs and hummus.

Maybe it was all the endorphins in the air or the earliness of the hour but after the first batch of runners took off from the start line I texted my friend Lori to suggest that next year we do the 5k.  No zombies required.

Friday, May 11, 2012

it's the weekend: call your mother

Watch. Flavorwire's three-and-a-half minute super-cut of the wisdom of our TV mothers. Who's your favourite? "Do not eat chips out of a communal bowl.  You may as well stick your hand in a toilet."

Make.  How cute would these colourful animal-topped jars be at a baby shower or kid's birthday party?  Super simple and great way to use all those empty jars you can't quite bear to toss. (I know I'm not the only one in this predicament!)

Listen. NPR's "First Listen" is one of my favourite ways to preview upcoming albums.  Right now I have the dreamy pop sounds of Beach House's Bloom is in heavy rotation. The sneek peak, er, hear is only available until the album drops on Tuesday.

Admire. This gorgeous bronze playground in New York.

Breathe. If you love sea breezes, bonfires and beautiful music, mark your calendar for the Summer's End Folk Fest on Grand Manan island.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

someone's in the kitchen

When Fredericton Tourism asked me if I would go behind the scenes at the Delta Fredericton kitchen and cook with Executive Chef Jason Gower and his team for a Kitchen Rave I jumped at the chance.  Held periodically at the hotel, the Kitchen Raves offer a chance for couples, corporate groups or friends to head to the kitchen and prepare a three course meal the way the experts do.  Of course, the best part is sampling the finished product!

Our first course was a cocoa crusted chicken served with a wild mushroom and lobster risotto, topped with lemon butter sauce.  I love the idea of liberating cocoa from desserts or sweet treats and look forward to trying this cocoa crusted chicken at home.  And, of course, risotto is one of my favourite dishes and this version with lobster, wild mushrooms and saffron didn't disappoint.  (I also learned some secrets on how I can serve risotto at my next dinner part without forcing my guests to visit me in the kitchen for a 20-minute broth facial over a steaming risotto pot!)

Our salad course was roasted asparagus and goat cheese salad with seared Bay of Fundy scallops and topped with a port wine vinaigrette and crushed walnuts.  Originally this had been intended to be a roasted beet salad but Chef has a real commitment to quality ingredients sourced as locally as possible and when he couldn't find beets to his liking switched the dish to asparagus. I've been roasting asparagus at home a lot this spring - brings out a wonderful flavour, especially in the tips.  How cute is the little cucumber slice basket holding the greens?  A simple way to dress up your greens!

Before the main course, Chef took us outside to share a breathtaking sunset.  Who needs dinner and a movie?  This is the real show!   The Delta Fredericton patio has arguably the best view of the river in the city and this has me excited for the opening of their pool bar!

We headed back to the table and our main course: white balsamic and roasted garlic marinated strip loin of Atlantic pride beef, topped with a red wine reduction and grilled baby prawns. I rarely cook beef at home because I find it challenging to get it just right.  So I appreciate someone else serving me a juicy, quality strip loin.  And how cute are those multi-coloured carrots?  Really simple and creative choices to dress up the plate.

And finally - dessert: a Keswick apple tart tartin served with vanilla pod ice cream quenelles.  This is a dish that really emphasizes the Chef's focus on local ingredients.  The local apples are blanched and frozen in the fall so they can be used throughout the year.  I've done that with vegetables but it never occurred to me to preserve the fruits of my apple-picking labours this way!  (I'm going to need a bigger freezer...)   The tart was sweet and caramelized and the rich and creamy vanilla pod ice cream from McCabe's is ice cream as it should be!  A fancier spin on the classic apple pie and ice cream and a great end to a delicious evening.

Whether you're a seasoned chef or a kitchen neophyte, the Delta Kitchen Rave is a night of great fun and great eats.  Keep an eye on the Delta Fredericton Facebook page for details of the next rave - they announce about two weeks in advance.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

on the market

When I woke up just before 5 a.m. on Saturday morning I could hear the rain on my tin roof.   But neither rain nor the early hour did anything to dampen my enthusiasm.  I was going to have the chance to share with visiting travel media one of my very favourite Fredericton experiences: the Boyce Farmer’s Market.

Part of the charm of this Saturday morning tradition is that it's not just a quaint touristy spot but it’s genuinely part of the life of the city cutting across all sections of the community each with their own routine and rhythm.  You can practically set your watch by which group is populating the market at any given time.   

Arriving at the Brunswick St. entrance many of us made a bee line through the food alley (we lost a few to the tempting aroma’s of Magzy’s kettle corn, the new artisan pizzas and, unsurprisingly, the lobster rolls) and headed straight for Whitney Coffee.  A cup of their fresh-roasted, fresh-brewed coffee or cappuccino is my first stop at my normal market hour of 9 a.m.  Before 7 a.m. it’s an absolute necessity!

Donna from Philadelphia was interested in maple syrup  so coffees in hand we headed off to the old part of the market where Leah Anstis was manning a stall of maple products.  Leah is the founder of Local Foodies of Fredericton  a group that holds workshops about skills like canning, drying, freezing, preparing and growing your own food.  During the week you can find Leah at RealFood Connections  one of the leading players in Fredericton’s growing local food movement.   Donna happily left with two bottles of local maple syrup to take back to the States.

Our next stop was in search of chocolate.  I’ve written before about my love for  Choco Cocagne and Donna was charmed by their sweet samplers.  Chocolate in hand, Donna struck out on her own to explore the market and I met up with Karan Smith.  Karan and I had exchanged emails before the conference so we were looking forward to meeting in person.  I took her around my normal market routine.  First stop:  au fond des bois fromagerie.  Marina, William and Patrick are originally from Belgium and came to Canada in 2005.  Now based in Rexton, they produce more than 20 different kinds of goat cheese which they sell along with other products weekly at the Boyce Farmer’s Market.   On Saturday I treated myself to two rounds:  their popular slightly sweet and smooth le Barbizon and le Forban, a black pepper and garlic powerhous.  Either one was going to be delicious tossed with my next purchase…

Second generation market vendor Alison Toron (her parents run Northern Lights Leather) and her partner Josh Dickison started NashwaakNoodles in July 2010 and haven’t missed a market Saturday since.   Their fresh pasta is one of my market faves. This week I went with their classic lemon-pepper linguine.  Check out Nashwaak Noodles on Facebook for their flavor of the week.  My personal favourite is Picaroons Best Bitter and red pepper.  They source local ingredients as much as possible and good news:  if you can’t make the market, Nashwaak Noodles are now available through Real Food Connections.

Next stop the Gagetown Fruit Farm   stall for some eggs.  Matt Estabrooks and Heather Rhymes took over Matt’s family farm a few years ago and their current products include produce, baked goods, eggs and soups among other things.   They are chefs by trade and during the summer months you can sample their cooking at their small restaurant in a converted barn on their farm in Gagetown.  In the fall be sure to stop by the farm for U-pick apples and pumpkins.  

Goat cheese and eggs don’t exactly travel well so Karan was on the lookout for something non-perishable that she could take back to Ontario with her.  Carloe Liu’s sweet hand-carvedstamps and prints  offered the perfect solution to the packing dilemma.  While Karan deliberated over prints and cards.  I picked up a pack of York County Granola New Brunswick mix (with cranberries and pumpkin seeds) from Jessica Breau at the next stall over. 

The weather was still inclement but we decided to skip the bus back to the hotel in favour of a little more market exploring and a walk through downtown.    Karan sampled some of Van Dyck’s wild blueberry juice and some freshly-squeezed o.j. from Sam the Juice man.   We both happily accepted a couple of steaming mugs of hot Coburn’s Cider  to ward off the damp weather.  Dave Coburn’s family has been a Fredericton market presence since long before the current  location opened 60 years ago.  I picked up a jar of Family Favourite spiced apple jelly from Sarah Ingersoll, Karan grabbed  a soft pretzel from Rudolph’s Farm, Butchershop, and German Baking and we each bought a bouquet of mayflowers from an older lady who told us she’s been picking and selling mayflowers at the market since she was eight years old.  Not to disclose a lady’s age but my guess is that means she’s been selling mayflowers for as long as the Boyce has been open.  Now that’s a tradition!

Leaving the market through the food court – and a couple of photo ops of Bardsley’s lobster rolls – we headed down Regent for Queen Street.  We talked about the summer concert series at Officer’s Square and the classic movies on Sunday night at Barracks Square.   I told her in the 15 years since I moved to the city I’d seen a real rejuvenation of downtown  with new shops and restaurants.  Leaving the downtown core I pointed out the Small Craft Aquatic centre where in the summer months you can rent kayaks and canoes and see Fredericton from a different vantage point.

She was headed to the Delta and I live on the far west end of Brunswick so we parted ways at Wilmot Park.  When I arrived back home it wasn’t even 9 a.m. yet but it had already been a great Fredericton day.

Friday, May 4, 2012

back to nature

I grew up on an island where the Bay of Fundy meets the Gulf of Maine so while I love city amenities I need  nature nearby.  It's one of the great blessings of living in Fredericton.  I live equal walking distance from the galleries, music, shops and restaurants of downtown and 400 acres of woodland at Odell Park.

Near the main entrance at the park's north end, you can take it a leisurely pace with rolling lawns, the duck pond and picnic areas.

If you're looking for something a little more rugged meander up the hill and through the wooded multiuse trails.  (For the very hearty there are nearly 3km of primitive trails throughout the park.)

If you visit in the summer months plan to wander through the developing Fredericton Botanic Gardens at the southwest end of the park. 

Strolling along The Green, cycling the trails or cross country skiing in the woodlots, Fredericton is made for outdoor lovers.  If you visit from June - September stop by the Small Craft Aquatic Centre (63 Brunswick Street behind the Victoria Health Centre) where you can rent kayaks and canoes for about $10 an hour.  A  paddle down the St. John River is a gorgeous way to rediscover the City. 

fashionable fredericton

This week Fredericton hosts delegates from across the country for the Travel Media Association of Canada annual conference.  Each day I'm going to be sharing one of my favourite things about my little corner of the world.

This was supposed to be Thursday's post but by day I work at Theatre NewBrunswick and last night we unveiled our upcoming 2012-2013 season so things were a bit hectic.  Working at a theatre, one of the first questions I get from visiting actresses is ‘Where is the best spot for vintage fashions?’   Fredericton is home to a number of spots for vintage and consignment fashion (check out Reneu in the Tannery while exploring downtown for cute vintage and fashion forward local designs) but I always send curious fashionistas to Lovely Betty  in Marysville (277 Canada Street.)

This 19th century home is a two-storey treasure trove for vintage lovers.  Owner Tina Robinson learned an appreciation for fine fabrics - wool, silk, cashmere – and certain classic styles growing up in her mother’s British Woolens store.   With a fashion editor’s eye, she chooses and displays an eclectic mix of vintage and new items. Plan on spending lots of time exploring - eight rooms of clothes, shoes and accessories can keep a girl busy!

While visiting Lovely Betty, take the opportunity to explore historic Marysville one of Canada's National Historic District which was recently short-listed as one of Canada’s great neighbourhoods. Located on both sides of the beautiful Nashwaak River, Marysville was developed as a planned community at the height of the industrial revolution by cotton mill owner Alexander "Boss" Gibson .   The mill (now converted to provincial offices), the brick duplexes which housed the workers, the stately homes of the mill managers on 'Nob Hill' remain intact making it unique in Canada. This year the community marks the 150th year since Boss Gibson arrived on the Nashwaak,

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

take a little piece of our art

When I arrived at Ingrid's Mueller's gallery yesterday, a young couple from Rhode Island was just admiring their latest purchase.  As a memento of a visit to Fredericton, it's hard to beat a work of art. You could actually do an entire tour based solely on art in Fredericton (and we do with the monthly Culture Crawls that happen from June to September).  The Beaverbrook Gallery is a must, of course, but there are a number of other galleries and businesses who showcase Fredericton and NB art. 

My favourite is Ingrid Mueller Art + Concepts (98 Regent Street).   Ingrid has an impeccable eye and carries a number of established and acclaimed artists, many New Brunswick connections but her special gift is spotting and nurturing young up and coming talent.   Whether you're looking for art to display on your walls or art to display on yourself, check out this great downtown gallery.

Anne-Marie Chagnon

Jeneca Klausen (jewelry) and Kim Vose Jones (blown glass)

Her next exhibition opens Friday evening at 5 p.m.

Philip Iverson

After the opening hop next door to The Blue Door for dinner and a cocktail or across the street to Corked wine bar.