3 Silver Medals for Fresh Tracks Farm Wine!

The results are in from the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition! We are so thrilled and honored to have received 3 Silver Medals for our 2012 La Crescent, 2014 Marquette Rosé and our 2011 Oak-Aged Frontenac Gris (soon to be released!). We are also SUPER proud to be among several other Vermont Wineries and share with them in celebration!

 

In honor of our win, we are throwing it back to some super duper pairings we’ve posted here on the blog for Marquette Rosé and La Crescent. Cheers!



Carrot Cupcakes

We did this recipe not long ago as a fun pairing for our Maple Wine (also an excellent choice for spring 😀 ), but it would be just as tasty using our *Mapple wine. The added pop of rich apple flavor, along with the maple, is an added bonus. Feel free to experiment with this recipe too; instead of doing a frosting you could use this cake recipe as an alternative base to an upside down cake, baked on top of apples caramelized in butter, maple syrup, and *Mapple wine! There are so many fun things to do with apples and maple, and you have both flavors in one bottle! Explore away.

Cupcakes

2 cups sugar

1 ¼ cups vegetable oilIMG_0644

4 eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 cups all purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp ground allspice (we hand ground allspice berries for this!)

¼ tsp ground cloves

¼ tsp ground nutmeg

3 cups grated carrots

¾ cup raisins, rough chopped

2 Tbsp Maple Wine (or *Mapple)

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Icing

12 oz mascarpone cheese, locally sourced if available

1 lb confectioners sugar

3 Tbsp Maple Wine (or *Mapple)

½ tsp vanilla extract

Maple sugar, for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease two 12 count cupcake pans, or line them with cupcake liners.

Beat the sugar, vegetable oil, vanilla, and eggs together at medium speed until they are light in color, about 2-3 minutes. Mix in the flour, baking powder and soda, salt, and spices, being careful not to over mix. Fold in the carrots, raisins, and Maple with a spatula until just combined.

Scoop batter into the greased/lined cups so they are 2/3 full. You may not fill all the cups; remove the liners of the unused cups. Bake for 20-30 minutes (this will depend on the efficiency of your oven, so keep an eye on it) or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and let cool for at least 15 minutes.

In a medium bowl, beat the mascarpone cheese, Maple Wine, vanilla, and ¾ of the confectioners sugar together at medium speed until smooth and silky. Taste the icing; if it is too thin or not sweet enough, add the rest of the sugar. Fill a ziplock bag with half the icing, and cut of the very tip of one of the corners. Frost the cupcakes by gently squeezing the icing through the tip of the bag. Sprinkle the frosted cupcakes with a little maple sugar.

Serve any time of day, preferably with our Maple Wine or the *Mapple wine, whichever you happened to use, that you have conveniently left over from this recipe 🙂



Carrot Cupcakes with Maple Wine Icing

Cupcakes

2 cups sugar

1 ¼ cups vegetable oilIMG_0644

4 eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 cups all purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp ground allspice (we hand ground allspice berries for this!)

¼ tsp ground cloves

¼ tsp ground nutmeg

3 cups grated carrots

¾ cup raisins, rough chopped

2 Tbsp Maple Wine

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Icing

12 oz mascarpone cheese, locally sourced if available

1 lb confectioners sugar

3 Tbsp Maple Wine

½ tsp vanilla extract

Maple sugar, for sprinkling

 

 

 

Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease two 12 count cupcake pans, or line them with cupcake liners.

Beat the sugar, vegetable oil, vanilla, and eggs together at medium speed until they are light in color, about 2-3 minutes. Mix in the flour, baking powder and soda, salt, and spices, being careful not to over mix. Fold in the carrots, raisins, and Maple with a spatula until just combined.

Scoop batter into the greased/lined cups so they are 2/3 full. You may not fill all the cups; remove the liners of the unused cups. Bake for 20-30 minutes (this will depend on the efficiency of your oven, so keep an eye on it) or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and let cool for at least 15 minutes.

In a medium bowl, beat the mascarpone cheese, Maple Wine, vanilla, and ¾ of the confectioners sugar together at medium speed until smooth and silky. Taste the icing; if it is too thin or not sweet enough, add the rest of the sugar. Fill a ziplock bag with half the icing, and cut of the very tip of one of the corners. Frost the cupcakes by gently squeezing the icing through the tip of the bag. Sprinkle the frosted cupcakes with a little maple sugar.

Serve any time of day, preferably with our Maple Wine, which you have conveniently left over from this recipe 🙂



Who says you can’t have cupcakes for breakfast??

There’s something about the smell of pastries baking in the morning that brings back some serious childhood memories, especially in the winter. Walking downstairs, the smell of fresh-out-of-the-oven muffins always seduced me into taking those last steps over the frigid wood floor. They were steaming, scrumptiously sweet bites of heaven, not to mention their partner in crime: a mug of hot chocolate with a marshmallow crown.  And it was for breakfast. Whoa. Adults always seemed to find reasons to break the “no sweets for breakfast” rule.

Now as an “adult”, I find that my craving for sweets has turned down a few notches. If I started my day with that much sugar, I would be a wreak, not to mention my taste buds would be totally out of commission. When you taste wine as often as we do, you realize your days of skittles and fruit roll ups are essentially over. But this doesn’t mean we have forgone the world of dessert, no sir. When we find something that has “sinful” written in the margins, that’s the end of it, there’s no stopping us. While our kid-selves might have craved any old sweet, our slightly more mature selves crave something covertly sinful.

Back to muffins. Again, these are tasty morsels that have earned their stolid position in the breakfast realm, and they can certainly be a real crowd (or me) pleaser. But honestly, they are essentially naked cupcakes. They are just so honest and innocent, there’s not an ounce of taboo left inside their tender crumbs. But throw a silky, decadent layer of icing on that cute little puff, maybe some boozeIMG_0597, and hallelujah. My kind of crazy.

These cupcakes are a perfect example of a little naughty thrown in a batch of nice. They take a lighter spin on a classic carrot cake, losing the gritty nuts and letting the sweet raisins strut their stuff. The texture is light and fluffy, so much so you might even convince yourself to have two! The plain looking white frosting on the top is not so plain after all: it’s a luscious combination of sweetened mascarpone cheese hit with a healthy kick of our signature Maple Wine. This is my inner child craving sugar, but sneaking it into a more lux package. And guess what guys, these babies have fruit and vegetables in them, so go ahead and have these cupcakes for breakfast. Or shall we say ‘well dressed’ muffins? Whichever makes you feel better about the situation, I guess!

P.S. Don’t forget that left over Maple Wine to sip alongside these treats. The wine and cupcakes were made for each other, so don’t let them be lonely!IMG_0593

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Carrot Cupcakes with Maple Wine Icing

This recipe was adapted from a carrot cake recipe in The American Craft Beer Cookbook by John Holl

 

Cupcakes

2 cups sugar

1 ¼ cups vegetable oil

4 eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

2 cups all purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

2 tsp baking soda

2 tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp salt

¼ tsp ground allspice (we hand ground allspice berries for this!)

¼ tsp ground cloves

¼ tsp ground nutmeg

3 cups grated carrots

¾ cup raisins, rough chopped

2 Tbsp Maple Wine

 

Icing

12 oz mascarpone cheese, locally sourced if available

1 lb confectioners sugar

3 Tbsp Maple Wine

½ tsp vanilla extract

Maple sugar, for sprinkling

 

Preheat the oven to 350F. Grease two 12 count cupcake pans, or line them with cupcake liners.

Beat the sugar, vegetable oil, vanilla, and eggs together at medium speed until they are light in color, about 2-3 minutes. Mix in the flour, baking powder and soda, salt, and spices, being careful not to over mix. Fold in the carrots, raisins, and Maple Wine with a spoon until just combined.

Scoop batter into the greased/lined cups so they are 2/3 full. You may not fill all the cups; remove the liners of the unused cups. Bake for 20-30 minutes (this will depend on the efficiency of your oven, so keep an eye on it) or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Remove the cupcakes from the oven and let cool for at least 10 minutes.

In a medium bowl, beat the mascarpone cheese, Maple Wine, vanilla, and ¾ of the confectioners sugar together at medium speed until smooth and silky. Taste the icing; if it is too thin or not sweet enough, add the rest of the sugar. Fill a ziplock bag with half the icing, and cut of the very tip off one of the corners. Frost the cupcakes by gently squeezing the icing through the tip of the bag. Sprinkle the frosted cupcakes with a little maple sugar.

Serve any time of day, preferably with our Maple Wine, which you have conveniently left over from this recipe 🙂



Make the PERFECT Sweet & Spicy Sauce

  WARNING: This recipe is so easy and so delicious your family and friends will request it weekly!

Have this recipe on hand to carry you safely through the hectic holiday season! It’s inspired by simple ingredients made better by being local, natural, and GMO-free! Also the ingredients are foods you can store in your pantry or freezer, making them available for a last minute pot-luck or an easy-to-make weeknight dish.

You’ll need THREE ingredients:

  • Grape Jam (Fresh Tracks Farm Grape Jam makes it extra special!)
  • Chili/Hot Pepper Sauce (Vermont Pepper Works has a wide range of *heat* to counter our sweet grapes!)
  • Meat (Consider Misty Knoll Farms Chicken Wings or Drumsticks for a finger-licken dish!)

Ingredients

Directions (so EASY your kids can help!)

Oven: Pre-heat to 375 (Cook Time 1 hour pending on choice of meat)  OR Crockpot: Low Heat (Cook Time 3-4 Hours)

In either oven-safe baking dish or Crockpot, place choice of meat (Kielbasa, Meatballs, Chicken Wings, Drumstick, Thighs, Pork Butt, etc. work well with this sauce.)

Use equal parts Grape Jam/Jelly to Chili/Hot Sauce (Example: 1/2 cup of each for four medium sized chicken drumsticks)

Pour Grape Jam and Chili Sauce over meat, cover (or lid on Crockpot) and place into the oven.Finished Product

 For oven preparation, cook in a single layer and coat meat. Do not worry about mixing the two ingredients as they come together as a sauce while caking in the oven.

 It doesn’t look like much, but the end result yields tender meat and an incredible sauce that pairs with with fluffy Basmati Rice or creamy mashed potatoes.

 Additional Ideas and Suggestions:

This is one of those recipes where you can make it as a hot appetizer (sliced Kielbasa, wings, mini-meatballs,) or prepare it for a main course (pulled pork, chicken thighs, roast). The sauce pairs very well over cooked rice, mashed potatoes, or even a hearty pasta. It can be prepared ahead of time, same-day, or slow-cooked. With only three ingredients it’s a must have going into this Holiday Season!

Wine Pairing:

Fresh Tracks Farm’s Vermont Apple Wine



Updates from the Farm

Post-harvest season has arrived once again.  Our newest wines have finished fermenting, the leaves have fallen off the vines, and the cold weather is settling in. We wake up every morning with a greater appreciation for slower days, and take a moment to appreciate the crystalline beauty that envelopes our glorious landscape.20121102_FT_Farm_Horses_11

Meanwhile, preliminary taste tests are yielding very promising results for our newest vintages, and we couldn’t be more thrilled. The aroma of the La Crescent is lovely, the Frontenac Gris has its naturally full and tropical palate, and tomorrow we taste the reds again before moving them into the barrel room!

As far as the vines go, all of the leaves have fallen off because of the recent chilly temperatures.  I find them especially beautiful this time of year, having just bore their fruit and prepared themselves for winter. They look so neat and tidy, and even have this orange-ish hue that contrasts so brightly with the still brilliantly green grass. It looks like a painting, or a picture that has the saturation turned up high – much like the colors that we had this fall!  Speaking of which, this fall was incredible. Between the foliage, the sunshine, and the stunning temperatures it couldn’t have been any better. The vines enjoyed it too. Their leaves got to stay on for many weeks after harvest, basking in the sun and storing up lots of essential nutrients for next year. Often we get hit by a damaging frost much earlier leaving the vines less time to prepare for the following year, so we are very excited to see what next year will bring! This week the guys will finish up placing our very own compost at the base of the vines to give them that little extra boost.

20121102_FT_Farm_Horses_04On top of all of this, we are happy to welcome Mr. P to our farm family. Mr. P is a 9 year old Cheval, which is a Canadian Breed.  Mr. P tried to be a bachelor dressage champion in his earlier days but decided that the farm life was a better fit for him (who could blame him?).  Now his life consists of trail riding and adjusting to a social life that includes Colleen (our lady horse) and the chickens (they’re real gossipers, you know?).  He’s fitting in just fine though, and we are so very excited to have him! You can check out his most recent facebook album here.  He likes his picture taken – I think it must be from his dressage days.

Anyways, that’s what’s going on around the farm. Thanks for reading!

Cheers,

Tracy

 



Fresh Tracks Farm Salad Dressing

We’d like to share our own Fresh Tracks Farm recipe with you! A delicious and easy salad dressing is perfect any time of the year, though particularly handy to have around leading into the Holiday Season!

Mix together the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup Extra Virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 cup Fresh Tracks Farm Red Wine Vinegar
  • 2 tablespoon Dijon Mustard
  • 3 tablespoons of Penzys Country French Vinagrette spices (sold in our tasting room)
  • 2 tablespoon Soy Sauce

We prefer it’s zesty-strong flavors! However, if you find the taste a bit strong, easily tone it down with a splash of water.

Our recipe also makes enough for a large dinner party, but if you find there is leftovers, do not fret! This dressing has an excellent shelf-life when refrigerated. You will find after refrigeration the dressing to be a bit thicker, and the olive oil more solid. To rectify this, simply take the dressing out before use and allow it to come up to room temperature prior to serving. Give the bottle or jar a good shake before serving.

 



OPEN MEMORIAL DAY

No need to cut your vacation short – we’re open till 5 today! Come on by!



American White, Sundried Tomato and Spinach Pasta Recipe

Jordan, one of our many awesome employees, derived this wonderful white wine sauce using our very own American White wine! In celebration of our newest batch’s release, we thought we’d share it with you. Bon appetit!

Ingredients (For 4 people):

  • 2, 8oz jars of Sun-dried Tomatoes with Italian Herbs in olive oil
  •  Freshly shredded Romano and Parmesam
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  •  Teaspoon of oregano
  •  1, 8oz package of sliced mushrooms
  • 1, 8oz package of spinach
  •  8oz of American White Wine (don’t be afraid to add more though!)
  •  Pinch of garlic salt
  •  4 servings of a pasta of your choice

Directions:

  1. Add mushrooms, sun-dried tomatoes, wine, garlic, and oregano to a medium sized pot and place on medium heat. Let sauce simmer – reduce heat if it begins to become a rolling boil.
  2. Cook pasta according to the brands specifications – add a pinch of garlic salt to the water for added flavor
  3. Let the sauce reduce to an appealing thickness. Once this happens, add the spinach to the top of the sauce and cover. DO NOT STIR YET. This effectively “steams” the spinach
  4. Once the spinach starts to wilt, stir it into the sauce.
  5. Plate the pasta, place desired amount of sauce on top, garnish with the cheese, and enjoy!


The Frontenac Gris Wins a Double Gold Medal!

The Frontenac Gris Wins a Double Gold Medal!

We have been awarded a Double Gold Medal for our 2010 Frontenac Gris wine at the Finger Lakes International Wine Competition. This is the second largest competition in the United States and it judges entries from around the world.

As our regulars know, the 2010 Frontenac Gris is rich in body and in flavor. The wine’s alluring honey aroma paired with its tropical fruit palate and buttery finish, have proven to be an outstanding coalescence. A Double Gold Medal is a great honor. Christina Castegren, the owner and winemaker says, “I’m so thrilled to have won this Double Gold, an award that every winemaker aspires to obtain. This is a wonderful competition not only for their focus on the individual wine’s presence, balance and varietal character but also for the fact that it’s a non-profit competition benefitting a wonderful camp for people going through major life challenges, like cancer.”

We were additionally awarded a Silver Medal for our new red wine named Freerider Red. This wine was also grown and vinified entirely on the farm. The label on this oak-aged, dry St. Croix reads: “Inspired by the joy of being truly free on skiis – Freerider Red celebrates those hard-earned fresh tracks.”  The name Fresh Tracks Farm seems to hold many meanings but perhaps the most prominent is that they are helping to lay the tracks for Vermont to be recognized as a quality wine region.

Fresh Tracks Farm is honored to have been chosen for this award by the well-known panel of judges comprised of sommeliers, educators, enologists, winemakers, writers, and industry consultants from major wine producing areas all over the world. For additional information, contact: Christina Castegren, owner of Fresh Tracks Farm at [email protected].

Stay tuned for the celebration party!

The Fingerlakes International Wine Competition awarded the 2010 Frontenac Gris a Double Gold Medal.

The Finger Lakes International Wine Competition awarded our 2010 Frontenac Gris a Double Gold Medal.