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Sharon Kitchens
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Sharon Kitchens is a former Hollywood type, who is now a backyard beekeeper & small egg producer in Maine. She blogs about farming, gardening, food, and drink.

Entries by Sharon Kitchens

Tasting Whiskey

(0) Comments | Posted September 19, 2014 | 3:07 PM


After reading an advance copy of Whisky Advocate managing editor Lew Bryson's new book Tasting Whiskey, out this November, I wanted to learn more about tasting whiskey. To accomplish this I brought together Don Lindgren, owner of Rabelais Books (one of the world's...

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Q&A With Joe Conway, Author of Get Back Stay Back: 2nd Generation Back-to-the-Landers in Maine

(0) Comments | Posted August 11, 2014 | 10:31 AM


In the early 1970s a generation of young people fed up with corporate culture and looking for a deeper purpose -- their minds filled with fantasies of growing their own food and being self-sufficient -- moved out of their urban dwellings...

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Gourmet Doughnut Food Truck in Portland, Maine

(0) Comments | Posted July 21, 2014 | 2:04 PM

Growing up I had a deep, profound love for doughnuts. Often, on weekends, my dad would pull a box of the variety pack Entenmann's doughnuts out and while he enjoyed his coffee and paper I'd have my way with the chocolate frosted, powdered, and plain doughnuts. This weekend morning routine...

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Q&A With Diana Yen, Author of A Simple Feast, and a Recipe for Raspberry Eton Mess

(0) Comments | Posted July 14, 2014 | 8:40 AM

Caterer and food stylist Diana Yen's favorite weekday dish is pickled shaved radishes and cucumbers, combined with faro, quinoa or kale, served with a fried egg on top. Her preference for healthy light meals is a result of spending days testing new dishes for the likes of Kinfolk magazine and...

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Special Surfer Nights in Kennebunk, Maine

(0) Comments | Posted July 8, 2014 | 2:41 PM


I had been surfing for less than a year when I attended my first Special Surfer Night in Kennebunk, Maine. At the time I was coming to grasps with the realities of surfing -- the sheer physicality of it and the mindset needed...

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Hop Farming in Maine

(1) Comments | Posted June 23, 2014 | 2:50 PM


In mid-May I made the short trip to the neighboring town of Gorham, Maine to see what a couple acres of planted hops looks like. Upon arrival at the hop farm I saw the vining plants growing up twine hung on rows of...

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Borlaug Institute Program Offers Optimism and Stability in Democratic Republic of Congo

(0) Comments | Posted June 16, 2014 | 3:16 PM


Promptly at 9 a.m. on a Monday in late April, Dr. Andy Hale gathered his immediate staff for their daily meeting on the porch of his colonial-era home. The storm from the night before seemed to be keeping the heat at bay, but...

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Potluck Parties and a Q&A With Author Ashley English

(0) Comments | Posted June 11, 2014 | 11:16 AM

North Carolina native Ashley English is descended from a long line of entertainers. The kind who hosted black tie and evening gown midnight feasts, Sunday suppers, and what she describes as epic holiday meals. Now that English is an adult, it should come as no surprise that she loves to...

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Cocoa Is Playing a Positive Role in the Democratic Republic of Congo

(0) Comments | Posted June 9, 2014 | 11:24 AM

Joe Whinney of Theo Chocolate with farmers in the Democratic Republic of Congo

A beloved staple in many a household, chocolate has taken on a richer meaning for family farmers struggling for an improved quality of life in one of the world's most...

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A Writer Examines the Culinary Capital of Maine

(0) Comments | Posted June 2, 2014 | 3:31 PM

Memorial Day Weekend was a week ago and summer has finally show signs of arrival in Portland, Maine. Restaurants and bars with water views are a little noisier and there are a few more out-of-state license plates vying for...

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Growing Soybeans in Northern Maine

(0) Comments | Posted May 16, 2014 | 5:59 PM

Andrew Plant, assistant professor of agriculture education for UMaine Cooperative Extension in Presque Isle, Maine recently wrote a summary for farmers who want to incorporate soybeans into rotations.

According to Plant, growers in Northern Maine searching for cropping alternatives to increase net farm income, should consider...

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A Report on Climate Change and Flooding in the Northeastern U.S.

(2) Comments | Posted April 6, 2014 | 8:08 PM

As the planet warms, science has predicted flood warnings will increase. Two of the most recent papers published on the subject as it relates to the Northeastern United States, do not tell the apocalyptic tale shared by Noah director Darren Aronofsky. Rather, these studies are straightforward reminders -- or subdued...

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Gunpowder Rye Whiskey: A Nod to the Past

(0) Comments | Posted April 3, 2014 | 5:28 PM

It was just north of Baltimore, Maryland, sometime during the 1850s when Ned Wight's great-great-great-grandfather John Jacob Wight took over a failing whiskey distillery and began producing Sherwood Rye Whiskey. One hundred and fifty years later, Ned Wight is continuing the family tradition in a warehouse on the outskirts of...

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UMaine Grad Student Researching Effects of Weather, Climate Change on Maple Sugaring Industry

(2) Comments | Posted April 2, 2014 | 12:09 PM

With the arrival of April the 2014 maple syrup season in Maine bids adieu, and what would have been a good season may have been thwarted by frigid temperatures, which lingered longer than has been the norm in recent years.

The sap flow in maple trees, which usually begins...

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Richard Miscovich: From the Wood-fired Oven

(0) Comments | Posted October 28, 2013 | 4:38 PM

Oven built by Pat Manley, image courtesy of from Chelsea Green Publishing.

Where there's Richard Miscovich, author of the recently published From the Wood-Fired Oven: New and Traditional Techniques for Cooking and Baking with Fire, there's heat -- the kind...

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Jack Hildreth: Master Beekeeper

(0) Comments | Posted September 17, 2013 | 3:09 PM


The days are cooling off and getting shorter, farmers are bringing in crops, wood is being stacked, and beekeepers are looking inside their hives for evidence of Varroa mites, one of the largest threats to honey bees in the United States.

In Maine,...

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Cellars at Jasper Hill: Best of Show

(1) Comments | Posted August 5, 2013 | 3:52 PM


The Cellars at Jasper Hill in Greensboro, Vt., won "Best of Show" for its Winnimere at the 28th Annual American Cheese Society (ACS) Competition on Aug. 3, 2013. The results were announced in a ceremony in Madison, Wis., followed by ACS's signature event, the...

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A Conference for Bakers

(0) Comments | Posted August 2, 2013 | 3:21 PM


Each summer since 2007, persons with a hungry curiosity about bread and baking have gathered in Skowhegan, Maine to learn more about building a brick oven, wood-fired baking, growing grains, and eating well. For bakers, farmers, homesteaders, and ambitious home cooks unsatisfied with factory-sliced...

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The Naked Table Project: Building a Sustainable Table With Charles Shackleton

(0) Comments | Posted July 22, 2013 | 2:25 PM


In this ever faster-moving world, a growing number of people want access to a simpler more sustainable way of life, in which traditions and connections are not disparate things. Furniture maker Charles Shackleton, co-founder of the Vermont based company ShackletonThomas, provides...

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Strawberry Season: Pick and Preserve

(0) Comments | Posted June 26, 2013 | 3:25 PM


There's nothing quite as sweet and summery as eating a freshly picked strawberry in the field. In fact, it could be said strawberries are as much a symbol of summer as iced tea and baseball. Given the number of festivals with...

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