sweet berry farm

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As I mentioned before, a few girlfriends and I visited Sweet Berry Farm in Middletown, RI over the weekend for some early fall apple picking.  It’s been (quite) a few years since I’ve carved out enough time to stop in at an orchard during those notoriously busy autumn months, but Sunday afternoon’s amazing weather presented the perfect opportunity.  After about two minutes of frolicking through the rows of ripe red fruits, the sweet memories of picking apples with my family as a child came flooding back to me: searching through the leafy branches for the most plump and perfectly round ones, plucking them down, shining them up and gently piling each one into the paper bag- careful not to bruise any.  The girls and I gathered up a whole peck of apples (I’m seeing some applesauce in my future) before heading into Sweetberry’s country store and trying out some of their other delicious treats (edamame hummus, I’m talking about you).  What a lovely way to celebrate the start of a new season!

Nice Times, Part II: Le Marche et Le Vieille Ville

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Our second day in Nice began with a visit to the all-organic Farmer’s Market on Le Promenade Des Anglais.  For any of you who have eaten an entire meal’s worth of samples at your local Whole Foods Market (and especially those who pride themselves on it like I do), I highly recommend you take any possible opportunity to visit Nice…if not for its gorgeous views and the salty blue Mediterranean, then simply for the delight that is this sample-happy open air market.  Every vendor we passed offered a bite of bread, a taste of green, black, mixed olive, basil, tomato, garlic tapenades- pick your poison.  Want to try a fig that tastes like a bon-bon?  Please do.  Care for an impossibly sweet prune? Here you go.  Meats and cheeses aplenty, fresh produce spilling out over table tops.  Fruit juices squeezed while you wait, refreshing carbonated citrus drinks offered up with a pastel-colored straw.  Row after row after row of peony and rose petals.  This place has. it. all.  And it’s just begging you to reach out and take a bite.  Please indulge yourself, you can practically hear the market’s unspoken urging as you float from one seller to the next, figs, lemonade, and 100% hemp bag in hand.

After falling under the unavoidable and hypnotic farmer’s market spell, Kevin and I journeyed further down the promenade and through an archway that read Quai Des Etats Unis, quickly realizing we had entered Le Vieille Ville, the old city.  Characterized by its warm colored stucco buildings stamped with bright green or blue shutters, this section of town immediately won my most prestigious of honors: the title of most charming place in Nice.  There, the farmer’s market theme continued, this time enclosed in vibrant striped canopies that seemed to stretch on and on forever.  Bellies half-full on samples, Kevin and I decided to top them off with a stop at a little Brasserie for some brunch.  Is there a word for that in french?…if not, simply see caprese salad below…DSC01768