257 South Cottage Road, Mercer, PA 16137 Google Map 724-662-1231
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News and blog

Welcome to our farm blog.
Posted 11/26/2016 6:40pm by Eric and Amy Philson.

Wow!  I have neglected to update our blog in a REALLY long time!  We have just been so busy this fall, but I know that's not a good excuse.

In September, we attended Munnell Run Farm's Field Day and Clarion's Autumn Leaf Festival. October brought Applefest in Franklin.  In November we were at Harmony's German Christmas Market. We also had two farmer's markets each week through October.

And now we have a booth at the Shenango Valley Mall in Hermitage until Christmas.  We are open Thursday - Sunday each week.

Our newest product has been a huge hit this fall.  We introduced Bourbon Barrel Aged Maple Syrup at Autumn Leaf Festival, and we can hardly keep it in stock.  In fact, we are filtering and bottling more tonight!  The syrup has been aging in oak bourbon barrels for several months, and is infused with the bourbon flavor.  When it is bottled, though, the residual alcohol is all filtered and evaporated away.  We anticipate running out before the month is over, and then we will have to wait for the next batch to finish resting in the barrels before we can bottle more.

Along with the sales events comes hours and hours of bottling and making products, labeling, and preparing everything else that goes along with events.

This is the first year that we will tap trees in our woods.  Eric and Gwen have been busy marking trees in our woods for taps. We have almost 2,500 taps marked so far, plus several hundred on another sugarbush near Franklin.  Eric has spent lots of time researching and planning for the tubing that will go in our woods.  Tubing installation will hopefully begin this week, if the weather cooperates.

This quick update is all I have time for right now.  The syrup is hot and ready to be filtered!

Amy

Posted 10/11/2016 11:31am by Eric and Amy Philson.

Our farm has been in a whirlwind the last few weeks preparing for and manning a booth at Clarion's Autumn Leaf Festival and then Franklin Applefest.  This was our first time at both of these festivals, and we had a warm welcome from the attendees.  Our booth was in the same spot occupied by Brown's Pure Maple for several years, so many came to find Brown's quality maple products.  Jim and Darlene have been graciously mentoring us this year as we jump into maple production following our purchase of their business at their retirement.

The biggest hit of the festivals was our newest product:  Bourbon Barrel Aged Maple Syrup. After trying a sample, most people had to take a bottle home for themselves or to give as gifts. We are co-branding the syrup with Wigle Whiskey, a small-batch distiller in Pittsburgh.  As soon as they empty bourbon barrels, we fill them with hot maple syrup and let it age for several months.  We then filter and heat the syrup, removing the impurities and residual alcohol.  What is left is a bourbon-infused maple syrup that is out of this world.  Wigle is also carrying our product in their stores.

We have an historical link to this product.  Wigle Whiskey is named for Philip Wigle, who was sentenced to hang in the Whiskey Rebellion.  If you're not familiar with this part of history, let me briefly tell you the story.  Farmers on the western frontier (at that time western PA, West Virginia, western New York, etc.) had a difficult time transporting their grain harvest to markets on the east coast.  The roads were poor, and their grain often molded in the damp climate before they could sell it.  So they turned it into whiskey, which was easier to transport.  Congress decided to tax this whiskey as a way to raise much-needed funds for the new government. However, western farmers rebelled against this new tax, pitting them against George Washington's troops.  Eventually, Washington's troops returned home and the tax was repealed, but not without some minor skirmishes.  Wigle was one of the instigators of the Whiskey Rebellion, along with Robert Philson, an ancestor of our family.

Now we are taking the Whiskey Rebellion to a sweet new level with our Bourbon Barrel Aged Maple Syrup.  If you haven't tried it, you don't know what you're missing!  Contact us at contact@bushelandpeckfarm.com  to get your own bottle.

 

Posted 5/19/2016 10:30am by Eric and Amy Philson.

It has been very busy around here recently.  So busy that I haven't had time to post an update.  But today I'm making time.

We are fencing in one of our hayfields for pasture.  Our horses have eaten down all the grass in their current pasture, and they are itching for fresh grass.  Eric and Gwen are pounding fenceposts with the skid loader. 

Pounding fenceposts

Progress has been delayed this week because Eric spent three days in court for jury duty.  But today it's back to work.

Lee is building more chicken tractors for chickens and ducks.  He's almost finished with them.  These tractors just need tarps attached for shade and rain protection.

http://www.bushelandpeckfarm.com/images/gallery/original/1463672540_8d6aea8871ca.jpg

http://www.bushelandpeckfarm.com/images/gallery/original/1463672540_a39ff944e69a.jpg

I was busy in the kitchen this week, restocking supplies of some of our maple products.  I made Maple Blueberry sauce, Maple Vinaigrette, Maple Pecans, and Maple Walnuts.  I then made a delivery to Volant Mills Winery, where you can now find some of our products.  I also delivered a case of Maple Syrup to Fezell's Shop 'n Save in Franklin to restock their supply.  They carry three sizes of our syrup.

What do you do when maple syrup gets heated to a higher temperature than you needed when making Maple Pecans?  Dump it out and start over?  Well, I started over, but I poured the syrup onto a pan with parchment paper and let it cool.  We now have maple hard candy.  It's not very pretty, but my children are thrilled!

 

And here are the finished pecans that I did right after adjusting my thermometer:

We also have a crew of Amish here this week making repairs on our barn.  We are cleaning out garden beds, getting them ready to plant soon, continuing to make plans for the building/kitchen that will house our maple syrup evaporator, researching regulations, marking maple trees that we will tap this year, planning for bottling, labeling, and marketing of our bourbon-infused maple syrup will be ready in a few months, preparing for Summer CSA with Northwest PA Growers' Cooperative that I manage, and much, much more.  So you can see why we haven't updated our blog recently! 

Now I'm off to clean up our house, which looks like a tornado went through with all the busyness around here.  And looking forward to a visit from our son, daughter-in-law, and new granddaughter this evening. 

Amy

Posted 4/21/2016 10:25am by Eric and Amy Philson.

Our second batch of chicks has arrived!  The first batch included both meat chicks and egg chicks.  They were moved out of the brooder onto pasture this week.

Check out this chick and duckling cuteness!

 

 

Posted 4/11/2016 12:08pm by Eric and Amy Philson.

We recently decided to make a website for our farm.  After a few weeks of computer work, we are finally ready to go live with it.  We welcome your comments and constructive criticism.  Look for more updates in the coming weeks.

Posted 4/6/2016 7:49pm by Eric and Amy Philson.

Look for blog entries to begin soon!

Busy, busy, busy!November 26th, 2016

Wow!  I have neglected to update our blog in a REALLY long time!  We have just been so busy this fall, but I know that's not a good excuse. In September, we attended Munnell Run Farm's Field

Fall FestivalsOctober 11th, 2016

Our farm has been in a whirlwind the last few weeks preparing for and manning a booth at Clarion's Autumn Leaf Festival and then Franklin Applefest.  This was our first time at both of these fest

What's happening on the farmMay 19th, 2016

It has been very busy around here recently.  So busy that I haven't had time to post an update.  But today I'm making time. We are fencing in one of our hayfields for pasture.  Our hors