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Tell us what you're eating and drinking this month...

     Several years ago, it occurred to my father that some of us kids who couldn't get home for the holidays might want to eat as if we were at home, so he collected all the family Christmas recipes into a booklet, and he printed five copies, with a festive cover and a spiral binding, and he gave one to each of us. They're like Bibles to us now, because the Holiday season has always been marked by foods that we eat only in December, most of which could be made only by certain people, some of whom didn't travel, so you had to go to them, all of which was part of the holiday story.

   What do you eat and drink this time of year, and how did those items wind up on your holiday menu? Let's start a collection of holiday recipes -- and the stories behind them -- on Barn Talk, the Great Country Farms blog. Send me an email with the recipe and the story and a photo, and I'll post them to a dedicated page. Later we can increase community engagement by inviting our guests to do the same thing. And we can all expand our kitchen repertoires!
At the Vineyard
December Open House
We have invited 14,265 people to roast marshmallows and sip wine on the terrace over the next three weekends, and 2,494 people had read their invitations by 2:00, so we might see good crowds. GCF members are eligible for a 10% discount on wine purchases with their membership card or with the coupon on the invitation they received.

New Menu
The December menu is attached (Sorry the link didn't come through last week.) It includes a new tasting list, new prices on some wines, and some new products such as coffee, tea, cider, and doughnuts, so please download it and read it carefully.
Save the Date
We have a staff meeting scheduled for January 6 at 6:00 pm. Please email Hailey if you can't attend.

Weekend Special
~Loaded Baked Potato Soup topped with chives.

NOTE: Mulled wine and hot cider suspended due to Global Warming -- 70 degrees in mid December?

Music This Weekend
Dave Minninberg, Saturday 12:00 to 4:00

Groups This Weekend
Saturday 1:00 to 2:00, Elevation Package for Pamela (12 guests)

Sold Out 
~2010 Merlot - "The Ram" 
~True Blue Wine Club - closed to new members through the end of the year. Please add interested parties to the waiting list. 
On the Farm
New Website 
We are excited to announce that last week we asked Synavista to build us a new website. A lot has changed in the eight years since they built our current site -- including the advent of mobile technology, which is how most customers find us now. The new site will work with both your smart phone and your laptop, and it will feature a scrolling, image-based structure that should make information easier to digest.

The new site will have a subdomain for the CSA program, with a new customer management system designed by farmers for farmers, which should mean less office work for us and a better experience for our customers. Watch for the new site to launch in January.

Please email us any photos you might like to share on the new site!

Next Up
We'll be open on March 19 for the Second Annual Bluemont Shamrock Run, a fundraising event to benefit the Bluemont Community Center. Watch Staff News for details.

The Pond at Dusk

In the Brewery
Brewhouse News
The Sweet Potato Stout was released right after Thanksgiving. Nick and Wes used 250 pounds of GCF sweet potatoes, which they boiled lightly before adding them to the mash. The yield was nine kegs. The Black IPA, made with Midnight Wheat and Chocolate Malt, is now available as well. Next up: Christmas beer, which will feature ginger root, cinnamon stick, allspice, and nutmeg.

Currently On Tap
~Straw Golden Ale
~Tart 31 Cherry Ale
~Black IPA
~Work Session IPA
~Ogden Pale Ale
~Sweet Potato Stout

In the Kitchen
Friday through Sunday:
~Flat Bread Pizza with tomato sauce, mozzarella $8
~Nachos with Rt.11 chips, garden pepper cheese, cream $9
~Pretzel Bites with olive oil, sea salt, or mustard $6
~Soup Du Jour $7
~Boiled Peanuts with sea salt $5
Thursdays & Mondays:
~ Assorted  cheeses and crackers are available   
Staff Info
~We plan to start bottling the Tart 31 and the Grape Soda in a couple of weeks. Janell is working with Maria Nicklin to create labels.