The Dark Tickle Company, St. Lunaire-Griquet on the Great Northern Peninsula, NL offers homegrown wild berry products in the forms of jams, jellies, vinaigrette, syrups, sauces, tea, coffee and chocolate. These berries are picked by hand from a network of approximately one hundred local residents of the Great Northern Peninsula, Southern Labrador and Northern Quebec. One of two Economuseum’s in Newfoundland & Labrador, Dark Tickle is the place where wild berries are processed without any additives. This is the traditional way of our preserving our berries, ensuring only the highest quality and most delicious of tastes. Those visiting Dark Tickle can watch workers prepare the products before their very eyes, as they have a windowed production area. There are panels at their business, as well as information along their boardwalk walking tour. One can gain the full authentic wild berry experience at Dark Tickle.
“The Mission of the ÉCONOMUSÉE Network is to conserve, develop and present traditional trades in a distinctive manner, and to set-up a country-wide network in order to provide the public with a high quality cultural tourism product.” – Artisansatwork.ca
The company also have a tasting station creatively called, “The Berry Patch”. It is a nice place to sample the products or have a cup of their bakeapple or patridgeberry drink or a hot cup of their coffees or teas. I love their crowberry and lingonberry teas, but on occasion enjoy the berry infused bakeapple coffee. Their products are found in so many specialty shoppes and locations throughout the province. I’ve bought their products in various places locally and I’m so proud when I visit other communities and see this product, as I can boast that it is produced when I live. One can purchase products directly at www.darktickle.com
After seeing a downturn in the cod fishery and a moratorium, for a merchant in the fish business it was either close up shop, try to hang in or diversify. The Knudsen’s founded Dark Tickle, which was an early innovator of utilizing our natural wild berry resources to create unique quality products. It has been a homegrown success that has provided local jobs, maintained a year-round operation and promotes St. Lunaire-Griquet and the Great Northern Peninsula all over the world. This is an anchor attraction for promoting tradition, culture, heritage and our rural way of life.
I encourage visitors to drop by and visit this family-run enterprise. They have a wonderful gift shop that has incredible Newfoundland and Labrador artwork and gift ware. They are also home to the Granchain Exhibit, which is part of unique part of world history, highlighting the adventures of the French migratory fishery in St. Lunaire Bay and along the French Shore dating back to the early 1500’s.
Certainly the Great Northern Peninsula could be an opportunity for more Economuseums given the vast talents of artisans, craftspeople and those who continue our rich and vibrant tradition of producing from the land and sea. We have tangible and intangible cultural assets that must be mapped, a network built and proper marketing. The Great Northern Peninsula has many strong businesses and homegrown success stories, let’s continue to support our local businesses and create new ones!
I enjoyed a cup of their crowberry tea, while I scribed this article and recognize big things are happening in our small communities.
Live Rural NL –Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA The Straits-White Bay North @MitchelmoreMHA
On a recent visit with my Grandmother Pearl, she gave me a bottle of her homemade squashberry jelly. I truly love this stuff! This morning, I’ve been able to enjoy it with a mug of Dark Tickle’s Crowberry Tea. The only thing missing, was a nice hearty slice of homemade bread.
When you experience the Great Northern Peninsula, visit Dark Tickle Company in St. Lunaire-Griquet, en route to L’Anse aux Meadows World UNESCO Site (Viking Settlement). If you are interested in tasting squashberry jellies, jams and spreads, you can buy them on-line at www.darktickle.com.
One of the many wonders on the Great Northern Peninsula.
Live Rural NL –Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA The Straits-White Bay North
Waking up to local coffee and teas from Dark Tickle Company in St. Lunaire-Griquet is the perfect way to begin your day. This morning I perked some of Dark Tickle’s finest partridgeberry coffee. The pleasant aroma when brewing boasts berry flavour, as it circulated around the room. My locally produced “mummer’s mug” was filled with the wonderful black liquid as I began to think about our local economy.
I am a supporter of this local company that is truly unique. Their bakeapple, blueberry, partridgeberry and crowberry teas a divine. A wonderful gift to give any tea lover as thank-you, on a special occasion or just every day gesture of kindness. They have an array of products and make jams, jellies, vinaigrette, chocolates and other products directly on-site. You can watch them at work in the small commercial kitchen through a wall of glass windows. Their products can also be purchased on-line at http://www.darktickle.com. They even have Iceberg chocolates! I certainly look forward to tasting those soon.
Supporting the local economy in rural regions is critical for success. Small businesses, like Dark Tickle Company employ local people, re-invest in their business and also support other ventures, the community and spend dollars as well in the local economy. The more out-shopping we do for goods and services at Big Box Stores, the more money is funneled out of the local economy.
If we are to keep our communities from becoming “ghost towns” we must spend our money at the corner store, co-operative and independently owned businesses. Keeping local dollars exchanging as many hands as possible before it is lost from the region is a way to maintain wealth and expand new business opportunities and employment.
Can we produce more locally? Can we buy more locally? I believe we can!
Live Rural NL –Christopher Mitchelmore, MHA The Straits-White Bay North
I look for products that are Made Right Here, in Newfoundland & Labrador. Sometimes, I am able to find them when I catch NTV‘s Danielle Butt on her weekly segment, Made Right Here. However, on this occasion I was at visiting Gros Morne Cabins and Endicott’s Convenience in Rocky Harbour. This business has a wide-retail selection of food items, convenience goods, camping supplies, crafts, tour options, information and some locally made products. I found Jumping Bean’s Blueberry Tea.
I enjoy the local berry teas, especially the ones I have sampled from the Dark Tickle Company, St. Lunaire-Griquet (one of our many Northern Pen Gems). You may purchase their product online by visiting www.darktickle.com.
This particular tea caught my attention as it was loose tea. Only a few weeks prior my grandmother told me how the tea they would get came in wooden boxes. It was loose tea leaves packed in a foil to protect it from getting damp. I’ve had loose tea before when I was in Egypt, but never prepared a pot myself.
I got a chair, my arms extended to the top shelf of the cupboard to carefully pull out a tea-pot that my mother received as a wedding present more than 30 years ago. She has an exceptional memory and told me the people who gave her and dad the present. It is remarkable! She remembers birthdays, telephone numbers and other every life events. If an elephant never forgets, my mother is like an elephant. However, that may be the only similarity as she has quite the petit figure.
I normally would have asked my mother how to make this stuff; however, she is not a tea drinker. I am not sure if she has ever had a cup in her life. My father, on the other hand would always have a cup of Tetley with his morning breakfast meal. Since this was my first preparation, I looked at the directions, which read:
Directions: Place the desired amount of tea leaves in the tea sac and twist the top to close. Steep for 4-5 minutes in freshly boiled water and enjoy!
Somehow, I feel the directions should be written with more structure to appease the novice tea drinker. I really had no idea how much of the stuff I should be throwing in and what amount of water to use. Some recommendation would be nice, in combination with…. or as your tastes desires.
In the end, I must have done something right as my cup of tea turned out to be a hit. It had natural berry flavours that were silky smooth and relaxing. I look forward to another cup of tea with my raisin cake in the near future.
If you would like to find out more about Jumping Bean, you can visit them on the web at www.jumpingbean.ca. They also make a variety of coffees, which include East Coast Roast and my personal favourite, Newfoundland Screech!
If you have the chance, pour yourself up a cup of loose blueberry tea from Jumping Bean.
Live Rural NL –
Christopher C. Mitchelmore
The fish has been soaking the night prior. Whenever a Newfoundlander says “fish” he is referring to cod fish. If he is talking about other types of fish, he will call it by name.
Today for dinner, I was able to enjoy a great meal of Fisherman’s Brewis.
The recipe is simple, yet big on delivery. You need hard tack (Famous Purity Hard Bread). This should be soaked in cold water until soft. We used three cakes for our meal. We had some already filleted cod, so we did not need to be as worried about the bones. One must fry fat port until a little brown.
Cook fish, add the hard bread and mash it all together and served. This meal can be cooked within a short 20 minutes.
This is a treat to the standard brewis on Sunday, when hot dinner is not being served.
There is truly something great about Living Rural and enjoying traditional recipes that have been mainstays of Rural Life for centuries.