City Market Members Tour Farms in Shelburne by Bicycle

25 Co-op Members embarked on an agricultural exploration of Shelburne, all by bicycle this past Saturday—called Tour de Farm. 

Two groups of cyclists navigated a ten mile ride over dirt and paved roads, making stops at O Bread, Shelburne Farms, New Village Farm, Shelburne Vineyards, and Shelburne Orchards.  Check out photos from the event.

The guided tour gave riders a glimpse of Shelburne’s landscape while creating connections to the food that is grown in the Champlain Valley. The tour ended with a Localvore dinner celebration for all participants and guests at Shelburne Orchards featuring local greens, tofu, roasted pork, bread, and wine.

The group started their day with a tour of Shelburne Orchards by owner Nick Cowles. Cowles not only provided a historic perspective on the Orchard but also demonstrated new initiatives including a copper-still for making apple brandy. Once on their bikes, the cyclists headed to Shelburne Farms to meet the cheese makers while tasting their well-known delicacies. After enjoying lunch, prepared with farm fresh ingredients, cyclists toured O Bread, a family-owned and operated bakery at Shelburne Farms.

The next destination on the bike tour was New Village Farm, the most recent addition to Shelburne’s innovative farm-scene.  Michaela Ryan, farm operator, is transitioning the land to biodynamic farming practices, which she believes to be the best possible method of farming.  Tour de Farm bicyclists learned about the complex techniques behind biodynamic farming and sampled New Village Farm’s raw milk while roaming around the expansive grounds.
Shelburne Vineyards was the final tour stop before a scrumptious dinner celebration. At the Vineyard, participants enjoyed a personal tour and samples of their award-winning wines.

The Tour de Farm ended where it began with the euphoric landscape of Shelburne Orchards as the site of a dinner hosted by owner Nick Cowles. The dinner was sourced from the visited farms and vineyard, as well as tofu from the Vermont Soy Company and pork from Maple Wind Farms. 

The Tour de Farm, Shelburne was the fourth in a series of farm tours organized by City Market. Previous farm tours included Lewis Creek Farm, Shelburne Vineyards, Vermont Soy Company, Jasper Hill Farm, and High Mowing Organic Seeds in Hardwick, Vermont. Participants can sign up for future farm tours by contacting the Co-op at 802-861-9700 or find more information at www.CityMarket.coop.