Food & Farming

Food that is farmed here. Uniquely Wisconsin food that only grows here. Either way, great!

Driftless Wisconsin Food & Farming in the Spring

In 1886, John Burroughs described the sap run as “the sweet good-bye to winter…an equal marriage of sun and the frosts.” The warm days and cold nights of early spring mean tapping the maple trees, boiling sap in sugar shacks, and experiencing the pure sweet taste of fresh maple syrup.

In May, one of the most coveted items in gourmet restaurants pops magically from beneath half-dead oaks or apple trees. The morel mushroom shakes people from their winter doldrums and draws them into the woods for the year’s best treasure hunt. At the same time, other local delicacies are there for the taking. Ramps, or wild leeks, are wild onions native to North America. Raw or cooked, their pungent woodsy taste add flavor to salads, risottos, potato dishes, and eggs. And don’t forget to sauté a few fiddleheads, the unfurled tops of the young ostrich or royal ferns springing up in the woods.

bicycling ferryville, wiIn 1886, John Burroughs described the sap run as “the sweet good-bye to winter…an equal marriage of sun and the frosts.” The warm days and cold nights of early spring mean tapping the maple trees, boiling sap in sugar shacks, and experiencing the pure sweet taste of fresh maple syrup.

In May, one of the most coveted items in gourmet restaurants pops magically from beneath half-dead oaks or apple trees. The morel mushroom shakes people from their winter doldrums and draws them into the woods for the year’s best treasure hunt. At the same time, other local delicacies are there for the taking. Ramps, or wild leeks, are wild onions native to North America. Raw or cooked, their pungent woodsy taste add flavor to salads, risottos, potato dishes, and eggs. And don’t forget to sauté a few fiddleheads, the unfurled tops of the young ostrich or royal ferns springing up in the woods.

Driftless Wisconsin Food & Farming in the Summer

Summer means bees and bees mean honey. There is an active group of beekeepers in the area and every type of honey is available locally, direct from the hive.

Summer is a great time to visit the local vineyards and try some wines from cold-climate grapes. Sit outside and sip a sweet fruity white or a full-bodied red while enjoying views of grapevines on valley slopes. The fall harvest is especially fun to observe.

Driftless Wisconsin Food & Farming in the Fall

In fall, along a scenic ridge near Gays Mills, traffic is brisk as visitors from many states come for the many varieties of apples grown by the seven local orchards. Paula Reds and Ginger Golds, Greenings and Galas, Cortlands and Granny Smiths, and of course, the sought-after Honeycrisp. Ciders and cider donuts. Jellies and jams. Applesauce and pies.

Where to Sample Driftless Wisconsin Food

Viroqua has a great farmers market on Saturday mornings from May through October, as does Prairie du ChienGays Mills has a new market on Wednesdays from 2:30 to 6:00. Watch for roadside vegetable stands and trucks piled high with sweet corn.

Valley Fudge & Candy

Valley Fudge & Candy

Branches Winery

Branches Winery

Sunrise Orchards

Sunrise Orchards

Kickapoo Valley Ranch Guest Cabins

Kickapoo Valley Ranch Guest Cabins

Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe

Titanic Canoe Rental

Titanic Canoe Rental

Drifty’s Canoe Rental

Drifty’s Canoe Rental

Capt. Hook’s/ Clements Fishing Barge

Capt. Hook’s/ Clements Fishing Barge

Vernon County Tourism

Vernon County Tourism

Village of La Farge

Village of La Farge

Sports Unlimited Campground & Barn Yard 9

Sports Unlimited Campground & Barn Yard 9

Village of Ontario

Village of Ontario

Village of Soldiers Grove

Village of Soldiers Grove

Snowflake Ski Club and Golf

Snowflake Ski Club and Golf

Kickapoo Valley Reserve

Kickapoo Valley Reserve

Vernon Vineyards

Vernon Vineyards

Vernon County Museum

Vernon County Museum

Down a Country Road

Down a Country Road

Village of Cashton

Village of Cashton

Westby Syttende Mai

Westby Syttende Mai

City of Hillsboro

City of Hillsboro

City of Westby

City of Westby

Ferryville Tourism Council

Ferryville Tourism Council

Prairie Fun Land

Prairie Fun Land

Coon Valley Business Association

Coon Valley Business Association

Village of Gays Mills

Village of Gays Mills

Request our Brochure!

Whether for a weekend, a week, or longer, you’ll enjoy your stay in Driftless Wisconsin.