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Exploring Prince Edward Island: History, Culture, and Cuisine

Exploring Prince Edward Island: History, Culture, and Cuisine

If you mention that you’re going to Prince Edward Island on vacation, most people (with children, anyway) will say, “Oh, yes, isn’t that where Anne of Green Gables is set?” Fans of the novel certainly flock to PEI to pay homage to Anne and her creator, but that’s only one element of enjoyment when visiting this tiny Canadian province. You can shuck fresh oysters or attend a traditional lobster supper, cycle along the Confederate Trail, and even sample moonshine.

I drove for eight miles over the concrete and steel of Confederation Bridge onto the island, marveling at this engineering feat that stretched across the Abegweit Passage. It took over four years to construct at a cost of 840 million, and employed more than 6,000 workers. This is the longest bridge spanning ice-covered water in the world, and I was happy that my visit took place when there was no ice to be seen!

I took the first exit into the small town of Borden-Carlton and Gateway Village. After stopping in at the visitor’s center to pick up some maps and literature, I strolled around the shops selling ice cream, knickknacks, and collectibles for the discerning tourist.

Since it was nearly noon and my stomach was growling, I walked over to a restaurant I had heard about that sells fresh, locally sourced food. Scapes is a small, cozy place. Its chef-owner, Sarah Bennetto O’Brien, greets me with a dazzling smile.


Calling her eatery a “food truck with roots,” she coaxed me to try one of their staples: fish cakes made with haddock with a side of baked beans. Being from Colorado, I don’t have access to this type of food and my mouth was already salivating.

Everything at Scapes is made from scratch and the fish cakes were light, golden brown and not overly infused with fishy taste. All I can say about the beans is that they were dreamy, creamy and made with slow cooked beans, coconut oil, molasses, brown sugar, and, I suspect, love.

After lunch, I headed to the North Cape and what locals have dubbed, “The Oyster Coast.”

My destination was the establishment of a four-generation oyster fishing family known as the Hardys. Their slogan is “Oysters fishing a la Hardy” and they allow you to experience a real life oyster operation. There’s a bit of education including a trip on a dory to rake some oysters and, best of all, try some.

These Malpeque oysters are renowned all over the world for their quality and can be eaten right out of the river where they are harvested. After shucking one open I gobbled it down and wished I had some lemon and hot sauce to go with it.

One of the reasons why PEI is known as “the Gentle Island” is because people come here for a laid-back, relaxing getaway. Life seems to move a little slower here and as I pulled up to the nearby Hilltop Acres B&B and Guesthouse I took notice of the four-person wooden swing out front. I knew I’d make some time later that evening to try it out.

Owners Janice and Wayne Trowsdale have created a delightful little respite in their renovated 1930s country home with 75 walkable acres and two comfy rooms as well as an adjacent guesthouse. A homemade breakfast, of course, is included in the price.

My job for the day still wasn’t done. I had one more meal to eat (some job, eh?). So, off I went to Doctor’s Inn. In a nice bit of whimsy their sign says, “Doctor is Inn” as a homage to its previous resident, Dr. Stewart.

Today, the residence does double duty as an organic farm and as an intimate, private dining experience with only one seating per night, courtesy of Paul and Jean Offer. Unlike a traditional restaurant where you may not know where your food came from, Paul is proud that almost everything except for the meat course comes from his gigantic garden out back where everything is picked fresh.


Island Food

When touring Prince Edward Island, you'll see miles of lush rolling farmlands and coastlines dotted with fishing harbours, so it may not come as a surprise to discover that the food industry is the single most important contributor to our provincial economy. PEI is proud of its "clean and green" reputation world-wide and offers tourists a wonderful opportunity to "tour and taste" some of the best we have to offer.

On an island where the primary industries are farming and fishing, fresh is the operative word when it comes to food experiences. Prince Edward Island is famous for its oysters, mussels and even potatoes, and now visitors can enjoy "field to table" culinary touring with a range of hands-on food experiences. On the Island the "100-mile diet" becomes the 10-mile diet as the lobster on your plate may have been harvested on the fishing boat at the dock outside the window and the salad is made up of herbs and greens from the garden in the yard.

Curious about how those delicious lobsters are caught, or how to shuck an oyster properly? Sign up for a guided experience on a lobster boat or a fishing dory. For a full-on foodie weekend, take a look at the PEI fall schedule - not one, but two, amazing fall food festivals are on the September/October calendars.

The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a lively three days filled with music, mussels and oysters plus the intensely exciting shucking competitions. In late September more than 75 events pack the Fall Flavours Festival agenda. Culinary keeners go from smoking and pickling workshops, to oyster tonging and potato picking, to spectacular fine dining with top chefs cooking up nine-course extravaganzas.

Customize your own "Taste the Island" Tour

You could sample the chocolates at the Island Chocolates Company in beautiful Victoria by-the-Sea, then travel north to New Glasgow and taste the wonderful array of jams and chutneys at the sampling table at the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and then head east to sample wines at the Rossignol Estate Winery.

Here are a few pages that might help you find something that you've been looking for:


Island Food

When touring Prince Edward Island, you'll see miles of lush rolling farmlands and coastlines dotted with fishing harbours, so it may not come as a surprise to discover that the food industry is the single most important contributor to our provincial economy. PEI is proud of its "clean and green" reputation world-wide and offers tourists a wonderful opportunity to "tour and taste" some of the best we have to offer.

On an island where the primary industries are farming and fishing, fresh is the operative word when it comes to food experiences. Prince Edward Island is famous for its oysters, mussels and even potatoes, and now visitors can enjoy "field to table" culinary touring with a range of hands-on food experiences. On the Island the "100-mile diet" becomes the 10-mile diet as the lobster on your plate may have been harvested on the fishing boat at the dock outside the window and the salad is made up of herbs and greens from the garden in the yard.

Curious about how those delicious lobsters are caught, or how to shuck an oyster properly? Sign up for a guided experience on a lobster boat or a fishing dory. For a full-on foodie weekend, take a look at the PEI fall schedule - not one, but two, amazing fall food festivals are on the September/October calendars.

The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a lively three days filled with music, mussels and oysters plus the intensely exciting shucking competitions. In late September more than 75 events pack the Fall Flavours Festival agenda. Culinary keeners go from smoking and pickling workshops, to oyster tonging and potato picking, to spectacular fine dining with top chefs cooking up nine-course extravaganzas.

Customize your own "Taste the Island" Tour

You could sample the chocolates at the Island Chocolates Company in beautiful Victoria by-the-Sea, then travel north to New Glasgow and taste the wonderful array of jams and chutneys at the sampling table at the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and then head east to sample wines at the Rossignol Estate Winery.

Here are a few pages that might help you find something that you've been looking for:


Island Food

When touring Prince Edward Island, you'll see miles of lush rolling farmlands and coastlines dotted with fishing harbours, so it may not come as a surprise to discover that the food industry is the single most important contributor to our provincial economy. PEI is proud of its "clean and green" reputation world-wide and offers tourists a wonderful opportunity to "tour and taste" some of the best we have to offer.

On an island where the primary industries are farming and fishing, fresh is the operative word when it comes to food experiences. Prince Edward Island is famous for its oysters, mussels and even potatoes, and now visitors can enjoy "field to table" culinary touring with a range of hands-on food experiences. On the Island the "100-mile diet" becomes the 10-mile diet as the lobster on your plate may have been harvested on the fishing boat at the dock outside the window and the salad is made up of herbs and greens from the garden in the yard.

Curious about how those delicious lobsters are caught, or how to shuck an oyster properly? Sign up for a guided experience on a lobster boat or a fishing dory. For a full-on foodie weekend, take a look at the PEI fall schedule - not one, but two, amazing fall food festivals are on the September/October calendars.

The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a lively three days filled with music, mussels and oysters plus the intensely exciting shucking competitions. In late September more than 75 events pack the Fall Flavours Festival agenda. Culinary keeners go from smoking and pickling workshops, to oyster tonging and potato picking, to spectacular fine dining with top chefs cooking up nine-course extravaganzas.

Customize your own "Taste the Island" Tour

You could sample the chocolates at the Island Chocolates Company in beautiful Victoria by-the-Sea, then travel north to New Glasgow and taste the wonderful array of jams and chutneys at the sampling table at the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and then head east to sample wines at the Rossignol Estate Winery.

Here are a few pages that might help you find something that you've been looking for:


Island Food

When touring Prince Edward Island, you'll see miles of lush rolling farmlands and coastlines dotted with fishing harbours, so it may not come as a surprise to discover that the food industry is the single most important contributor to our provincial economy. PEI is proud of its "clean and green" reputation world-wide and offers tourists a wonderful opportunity to "tour and taste" some of the best we have to offer.

On an island where the primary industries are farming and fishing, fresh is the operative word when it comes to food experiences. Prince Edward Island is famous for its oysters, mussels and even potatoes, and now visitors can enjoy "field to table" culinary touring with a range of hands-on food experiences. On the Island the "100-mile diet" becomes the 10-mile diet as the lobster on your plate may have been harvested on the fishing boat at the dock outside the window and the salad is made up of herbs and greens from the garden in the yard.

Curious about how those delicious lobsters are caught, or how to shuck an oyster properly? Sign up for a guided experience on a lobster boat or a fishing dory. For a full-on foodie weekend, take a look at the PEI fall schedule - not one, but two, amazing fall food festivals are on the September/October calendars.

The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a lively three days filled with music, mussels and oysters plus the intensely exciting shucking competitions. In late September more than 75 events pack the Fall Flavours Festival agenda. Culinary keeners go from smoking and pickling workshops, to oyster tonging and potato picking, to spectacular fine dining with top chefs cooking up nine-course extravaganzas.

Customize your own "Taste the Island" Tour

You could sample the chocolates at the Island Chocolates Company in beautiful Victoria by-the-Sea, then travel north to New Glasgow and taste the wonderful array of jams and chutneys at the sampling table at the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and then head east to sample wines at the Rossignol Estate Winery.

Here are a few pages that might help you find something that you've been looking for:


Island Food

When touring Prince Edward Island, you'll see miles of lush rolling farmlands and coastlines dotted with fishing harbours, so it may not come as a surprise to discover that the food industry is the single most important contributor to our provincial economy. PEI is proud of its "clean and green" reputation world-wide and offers tourists a wonderful opportunity to "tour and taste" some of the best we have to offer.

On an island where the primary industries are farming and fishing, fresh is the operative word when it comes to food experiences. Prince Edward Island is famous for its oysters, mussels and even potatoes, and now visitors can enjoy "field to table" culinary touring with a range of hands-on food experiences. On the Island the "100-mile diet" becomes the 10-mile diet as the lobster on your plate may have been harvested on the fishing boat at the dock outside the window and the salad is made up of herbs and greens from the garden in the yard.

Curious about how those delicious lobsters are caught, or how to shuck an oyster properly? Sign up for a guided experience on a lobster boat or a fishing dory. For a full-on foodie weekend, take a look at the PEI fall schedule - not one, but two, amazing fall food festivals are on the September/October calendars.

The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a lively three days filled with music, mussels and oysters plus the intensely exciting shucking competitions. In late September more than 75 events pack the Fall Flavours Festival agenda. Culinary keeners go from smoking and pickling workshops, to oyster tonging and potato picking, to spectacular fine dining with top chefs cooking up nine-course extravaganzas.

Customize your own "Taste the Island" Tour

You could sample the chocolates at the Island Chocolates Company in beautiful Victoria by-the-Sea, then travel north to New Glasgow and taste the wonderful array of jams and chutneys at the sampling table at the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and then head east to sample wines at the Rossignol Estate Winery.

Here are a few pages that might help you find something that you've been looking for:


Island Food

When touring Prince Edward Island, you'll see miles of lush rolling farmlands and coastlines dotted with fishing harbours, so it may not come as a surprise to discover that the food industry is the single most important contributor to our provincial economy. PEI is proud of its "clean and green" reputation world-wide and offers tourists a wonderful opportunity to "tour and taste" some of the best we have to offer.

On an island where the primary industries are farming and fishing, fresh is the operative word when it comes to food experiences. Prince Edward Island is famous for its oysters, mussels and even potatoes, and now visitors can enjoy "field to table" culinary touring with a range of hands-on food experiences. On the Island the "100-mile diet" becomes the 10-mile diet as the lobster on your plate may have been harvested on the fishing boat at the dock outside the window and the salad is made up of herbs and greens from the garden in the yard.

Curious about how those delicious lobsters are caught, or how to shuck an oyster properly? Sign up for a guided experience on a lobster boat or a fishing dory. For a full-on foodie weekend, take a look at the PEI fall schedule - not one, but two, amazing fall food festivals are on the September/October calendars.

The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a lively three days filled with music, mussels and oysters plus the intensely exciting shucking competitions. In late September more than 75 events pack the Fall Flavours Festival agenda. Culinary keeners go from smoking and pickling workshops, to oyster tonging and potato picking, to spectacular fine dining with top chefs cooking up nine-course extravaganzas.

Customize your own "Taste the Island" Tour

You could sample the chocolates at the Island Chocolates Company in beautiful Victoria by-the-Sea, then travel north to New Glasgow and taste the wonderful array of jams and chutneys at the sampling table at the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and then head east to sample wines at the Rossignol Estate Winery.

Here are a few pages that might help you find something that you've been looking for:


Island Food

When touring Prince Edward Island, you'll see miles of lush rolling farmlands and coastlines dotted with fishing harbours, so it may not come as a surprise to discover that the food industry is the single most important contributor to our provincial economy. PEI is proud of its "clean and green" reputation world-wide and offers tourists a wonderful opportunity to "tour and taste" some of the best we have to offer.

On an island where the primary industries are farming and fishing, fresh is the operative word when it comes to food experiences. Prince Edward Island is famous for its oysters, mussels and even potatoes, and now visitors can enjoy "field to table" culinary touring with a range of hands-on food experiences. On the Island the "100-mile diet" becomes the 10-mile diet as the lobster on your plate may have been harvested on the fishing boat at the dock outside the window and the salad is made up of herbs and greens from the garden in the yard.

Curious about how those delicious lobsters are caught, or how to shuck an oyster properly? Sign up for a guided experience on a lobster boat or a fishing dory. For a full-on foodie weekend, take a look at the PEI fall schedule - not one, but two, amazing fall food festivals are on the September/October calendars.

The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a lively three days filled with music, mussels and oysters plus the intensely exciting shucking competitions. In late September more than 75 events pack the Fall Flavours Festival agenda. Culinary keeners go from smoking and pickling workshops, to oyster tonging and potato picking, to spectacular fine dining with top chefs cooking up nine-course extravaganzas.

Customize your own "Taste the Island" Tour

You could sample the chocolates at the Island Chocolates Company in beautiful Victoria by-the-Sea, then travel north to New Glasgow and taste the wonderful array of jams and chutneys at the sampling table at the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and then head east to sample wines at the Rossignol Estate Winery.

Here are a few pages that might help you find something that you've been looking for:


Island Food

When touring Prince Edward Island, you'll see miles of lush rolling farmlands and coastlines dotted with fishing harbours, so it may not come as a surprise to discover that the food industry is the single most important contributor to our provincial economy. PEI is proud of its "clean and green" reputation world-wide and offers tourists a wonderful opportunity to "tour and taste" some of the best we have to offer.

On an island where the primary industries are farming and fishing, fresh is the operative word when it comes to food experiences. Prince Edward Island is famous for its oysters, mussels and even potatoes, and now visitors can enjoy "field to table" culinary touring with a range of hands-on food experiences. On the Island the "100-mile diet" becomes the 10-mile diet as the lobster on your plate may have been harvested on the fishing boat at the dock outside the window and the salad is made up of herbs and greens from the garden in the yard.

Curious about how those delicious lobsters are caught, or how to shuck an oyster properly? Sign up for a guided experience on a lobster boat or a fishing dory. For a full-on foodie weekend, take a look at the PEI fall schedule - not one, but two, amazing fall food festivals are on the September/October calendars.

The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a lively three days filled with music, mussels and oysters plus the intensely exciting shucking competitions. In late September more than 75 events pack the Fall Flavours Festival agenda. Culinary keeners go from smoking and pickling workshops, to oyster tonging and potato picking, to spectacular fine dining with top chefs cooking up nine-course extravaganzas.

Customize your own "Taste the Island" Tour

You could sample the chocolates at the Island Chocolates Company in beautiful Victoria by-the-Sea, then travel north to New Glasgow and taste the wonderful array of jams and chutneys at the sampling table at the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and then head east to sample wines at the Rossignol Estate Winery.

Here are a few pages that might help you find something that you've been looking for:


Island Food

When touring Prince Edward Island, you'll see miles of lush rolling farmlands and coastlines dotted with fishing harbours, so it may not come as a surprise to discover that the food industry is the single most important contributor to our provincial economy. PEI is proud of its "clean and green" reputation world-wide and offers tourists a wonderful opportunity to "tour and taste" some of the best we have to offer.

On an island where the primary industries are farming and fishing, fresh is the operative word when it comes to food experiences. Prince Edward Island is famous for its oysters, mussels and even potatoes, and now visitors can enjoy "field to table" culinary touring with a range of hands-on food experiences. On the Island the "100-mile diet" becomes the 10-mile diet as the lobster on your plate may have been harvested on the fishing boat at the dock outside the window and the salad is made up of herbs and greens from the garden in the yard.

Curious about how those delicious lobsters are caught, or how to shuck an oyster properly? Sign up for a guided experience on a lobster boat or a fishing dory. For a full-on foodie weekend, take a look at the PEI fall schedule - not one, but two, amazing fall food festivals are on the September/October calendars.

The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a lively three days filled with music, mussels and oysters plus the intensely exciting shucking competitions. In late September more than 75 events pack the Fall Flavours Festival agenda. Culinary keeners go from smoking and pickling workshops, to oyster tonging and potato picking, to spectacular fine dining with top chefs cooking up nine-course extravaganzas.

Customize your own "Taste the Island" Tour

You could sample the chocolates at the Island Chocolates Company in beautiful Victoria by-the-Sea, then travel north to New Glasgow and taste the wonderful array of jams and chutneys at the sampling table at the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and then head east to sample wines at the Rossignol Estate Winery.

Here are a few pages that might help you find something that you've been looking for:


Island Food

When touring Prince Edward Island, you'll see miles of lush rolling farmlands and coastlines dotted with fishing harbours, so it may not come as a surprise to discover that the food industry is the single most important contributor to our provincial economy. PEI is proud of its "clean and green" reputation world-wide and offers tourists a wonderful opportunity to "tour and taste" some of the best we have to offer.

On an island where the primary industries are farming and fishing, fresh is the operative word when it comes to food experiences. Prince Edward Island is famous for its oysters, mussels and even potatoes, and now visitors can enjoy "field to table" culinary touring with a range of hands-on food experiences. On the Island the "100-mile diet" becomes the 10-mile diet as the lobster on your plate may have been harvested on the fishing boat at the dock outside the window and the salad is made up of herbs and greens from the garden in the yard.

Curious about how those delicious lobsters are caught, or how to shuck an oyster properly? Sign up for a guided experience on a lobster boat or a fishing dory. For a full-on foodie weekend, take a look at the PEI fall schedule - not one, but two, amazing fall food festivals are on the September/October calendars.

The PEI International Shellfish Festival is a lively three days filled with music, mussels and oysters plus the intensely exciting shucking competitions. In late September more than 75 events pack the Fall Flavours Festival agenda. Culinary keeners go from smoking and pickling workshops, to oyster tonging and potato picking, to spectacular fine dining with top chefs cooking up nine-course extravaganzas.

Customize your own "Taste the Island" Tour

You could sample the chocolates at the Island Chocolates Company in beautiful Victoria by-the-Sea, then travel north to New Glasgow and taste the wonderful array of jams and chutneys at the sampling table at the Prince Edward Island Preserve Company and then head east to sample wines at the Rossignol Estate Winery.

Here are a few pages that might help you find something that you've been looking for: