Monday, January 28, 2008

Romney Farmers Market Web Site

For 2008, the Romney Farmers Market itself will have a new web site. Ruth and I are doing the web site on a volunteer basis and the first version is now live. Check it out at to see our results so far. This will give other local web sites such as the Hampshire Visitors Bureau and a link that they can use to support the market. The biggest challenge will be to compile the overall list of local farms and growers. The Farm Service Agency and the WVU Extension office will be helping collect that data and we'll continue to refine and add to the web site over time. It will give consumers a good resource to find Hampshire County's local farms and growers. This will help local farms connect with consumers that are interested in the growing local foods movement.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

WV Places Video

I found a You Tube video today that has a lot of nice WV scenery in it. I found it on a web site called American Towns. In the video, they start out in Hampshire County and then travel SW into WV. Since we have a lot of global blog readers now, I thought it would give folks a sense of our local WV scenery with some really nice photos.

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

A Couple of Local Finds

Hello everyone, If you are traveling locally and want a nice lunch stop, I have two places to tell you about. The first is called Trout Provisions in Wardensville, WV ( We took them some samples of our jarred products recently. There are a lot of facets to Trout Provisions. Its is a combination coffee shop-bakery-general store-art gallery. It is located in what was historically a dry goods store on main street in Wardensville. There you will meet pastry chef extraordinaire Monica Cassell. She makes a lot of what is called a crostata. I had to look it up on Wikipedia. This is a pastry with different fillings. Monica is able to be very creative with these. For example one is ginger-sweet potato-apple filled. Ruth had a cheese-potato-bacon crostata as a breakfast pastry. Then we moved on to the homemade croissants such as spinach-feta cheese and I eventually succumbed to a dark chocolate one. If they are interested, we'll get Monica some fresh and local materials to work her pastry magic with in 2008. Her eyebrows raised at the possibility of getting our fresh local red raspberries this season. The art is comparable to what you find at the Mountain Made store in Thomas, WV ( You are free to browse and enjoy the entire place. When we were there, a nice combination of locals and travelers came in. One of the owners, Carolyn, greeted most of the locals by name. Very friendly. They have been sourcing fruits and vegetables from PA as they got up and running. Hopefully as they learn the area, they will see that much of what they want and need is available locally in WV.
If you are in Davis, WV be sure to stop at Hellbender Burritos. Its right in the middle of town. A Hellbender is a large salamander that is native to Appalachia. Its about 2 feet long and also called the Allegheny Alligator. There are big plans to build a waterfront park in Davis, see for details. Traveling to Davis, you'll see dozens of windmills now. Davis is over 3000' feet in elevation and close to the ski resort at Canaan Valley as well as Blackwater Falls. Much of Davis is still rustic but that is changing. Proprietor, Rob has built a nice cozy place; you'll likely be sitting by the wood stove while you eat your lunch. Rob is the type of person that values high quality and fresh ingredients. What I admire in both places is the vision and work required to take an existing building and create an inviting space to warmly welcome visitors. In speaking with them, I sense that would much rather serve fresh and local ingredients as opposed to relying on the standard food service deliveries. For example, any place that would serve a tasteless food service tomato when fresh and local ones are available in season just doesn't get it. These are places that the locals know, and a bit under the radar. When we are traveling this is exactly what we look for. They are unique and special, truly a cut above the standard fare travelers would find at a chain restaurant. At a chain, say Olive Garden, its just mass production of a standard product using the cheapest possible ingredients. At a small town place, the person that prepared your lunch will personally ask you how you liked it and truly want to know if they have met your expectations. When we sell at the farmers market or at the farm, we feel the same way, and try to ask to make sure that we are meeting expectations.