Meet Nicole Hunt of Spirit Tree Cidery

Everyone knows that the best parties always end in the kitchen. With our series, Kitchen Party, we’re sitting down with Feast On Chefs to get to know them, and the local foods that inspire them, a little better.  

Nicole Hunt

Spirit Tree Estate Cidery

Caledon, ON

What’s your favourite seasonal ingredient? Well, fall is definitely my favourite time of year and so many wonderful ingredients become available. It’s hard to choose just one. This year, with recently starting at Spirit Tree Estate Cidery, I would have to go with the apple. The restaurant is in an orchard. Having some many different varieties within arms reach has been a lot of fun! I incorporate apples into almost everything I touch. What’s your drink of choice? Spirit Tree Cider, naturally. Most under-rated ingredient? The onion. An onion is in almost everything you make. It’s never a prominent flavour but without it, so many dishes, sauces, and dressings just wouldn’t be the same. Favourite restaurant? I recently moved back to Ontario after 11 years out west. Back west, The Tapa Bar in Trounce Alley Victoria was a favorite. It offers amazing Tapas and Sangria that creates an environment for sharing numerous plates of food and great conversation… but I look forward to exploring the local food scene soon! Off-duty, what are you most likely to be cooking at home? Comfort food. Soups, stews, chili, or a hearty curry. Foods that I can come home to after a long days work and heat quickly and feel comforted and satisfied. What’s the best part of working with Ontario food and drink? The abundance of ingredients to choose from. Ontario has so much to offer and so many new things coming up. It’s really special to work in a place that I can basically source everything from the area; and more specifically, be given the opportunity to get to know the purveyors and show case what products they have available. Why is Feast On important to you and your restaurant? It stands for all the right things in the hospitality world. If we can all do our best to support the local purveyors, it will help build a solid knowledge of exactly what Ontario has to offer. Sourcing local obviously promotes local business, but it really showcases how special your local community is and gives back to them. Fill in the blank: “If I entered a competitive eating contest, I’d definitely win if the item was _______” Meat and cheese… with wine breaks of course.

Get to know other chefs like Nicole by checking out the Kitchen Party Series!

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