FX Excursions

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5 Reasons Food and Wine Lovers Should Make the Trip to Nova Scotia This Winter

by Kelly Magyarics

Dec 20, 2023

© Untapped Marketing & South Shore Tourism Cooperature – Devin Smith

Daily

Are you an epicurean who wants to try something new this season? What about Nova Scotia? This maritime Canadian province is full of culinary delights, from sweet, cold-water lobster to fresh Digby scallops. The food scene is always abuzz, but some of the region’s most delicious events are happening from now until springtime. Here are five reasons to hop on a plane and get tasting:

Mild Winters Are Perfect for Outdoor Food Festivals

Located just about halfway between the Equator and the North Pole, Nova Scotia enjoys gentler conditions during winter compared to other parts of Canada, so you don’t always have to don thick gloves or mittens that’ll prevent you from holding a glass of wine or tucking into a lobster roll.

Nova Scotia

© Municipality of Barrington – Suzy Atwood

It’s Easy to Get There

Carriers including United Airlines and Air Canada offer non-stop flights in winter from major American cities like Boston (BOS), Newark (EWR), Fort Lauderdale (FLL), Orlando (MCO) and Tampa (TPA). Not having to worry about making a connection, especially at airports that might be a foot-deep in snow no less, means you can get to all that sipping and noshing that much faster.

Crustaceans are King

Lobster is Canada’s most lucrative export, and Nova Scotia is its world’s largest exporter. The month of February, which coincides with peak lobster fishing season in the province, is dedicated to the succulent shellfish, with events each weekend. Travelers from Barrington (dubbed the “Lobster Capital of Canada”) to Peggy’s Cove can sample the decadent ingredient prepared in everything from poutine to chowder, or indulge in broiled tails to steamed whole lobster. Forget about groundhogs, here: The prediction of a longer winter or early spring each Feb. 2 is handled by 50-year-old Lucy the Lobster. There’s also a Lobster Roll-Off Competition Feb. 4 and a Lobster Crawl Ball Feb. 17. Don’t forget your bib.

Lobster

© Municipality of Barrington – Suzy Atwood

The Culinary Scene is Deliciously Diverse

Not surprisingly, being surrounded by all that water means there’s a bevy of bivalves like lobster, including oysters and the famous Digby scallops, caught off the shores of the Bay of Fundy by the world’s largest scallop fishing fleet. But you’ll also find fun handhelds like Halifax donairs, where spiced beef cooked on a spit and shaved on to a pita is covered in a sweet garlicky sauce and garnished with onions and tomatoes. You’ll also find Rappie pie, a comfort food made with grated potatoes and meat. You can try it all and lots more during Dine Around Nova Scotia, Feb. 1–29, when restaurants across the province offer fixed-price menus.

The Icewine is Divine

Unique and rare, with a gorgeous purity of fruit, icewine is truly the nectar of the gods. Made by letting grapes freeze on the vine before pressing them, which concentrates the flavors, icewine might just be the ultimate dessert wine. If you want to try expressions from several producers without traveling around, you can head to the yearly Nova Scotia Icewine Festival, held this coming Feb. 9–11 at Luckett Vineyards in the Annapolis Valley. Grab a glass and sit around the bonfire, stroll through the vineyards, find your perfect pairing and more. Tickets include 12 tokens for beverage sampling, a food token and a branded glass.

 

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