Curiosity – and a discerning palate – changed Bree Eagle’s life quite unexpectedly.
“I used to be a farmer on Salt Spring and in the winters I got a job at a youbrew making fruit wines ,” Bree said. “I was cleaning out a back room one day and came upon a couple of old bottles of wine. I was going to toss them out, but I tasted them instead – and they tasted great!”
Little did Bree know this discovery would lead her to find her true passion as an entrepreneur. Sometime later her business, Salt Spring Island Artisan Vinegar was born. The vinegars are produced using slow, traditional small-batch methods from a wide range of local fruits and herbs. The fruit wines go into fermentation tanks where natural cultures convert the alcohol to acetic acid. Then the wait begins.
“This natural fermentation can take a long time,” Bree said. “We often wait for up to a year before the vinegar is ready to bottle. It’s tough to be patient, but the small-batch approach ensures the quality vinegar our customers appreciate.”
What sets Salt Spring Vinegar apart? Most of the fruit vinegars are the product of infusion. This means the makers of those products are buying bulk (often low quality) wine vinegars and infusing them with fruit flavour. In most cases they are also adding large amounts of sugar and flavouring to augment their infusions. But Salt Spring Vinegars are actually made directly from the fruit…it the is true essence, with no sugar or artificial flavours added.
For more informations on Salt Spring Island Artisan Vinegar, visit their booth at Made on Salt Spring at Heritage Hall in Vancouver March 23-25, and visit their website at www.saltspringvinegar.com.