Archive for the ‘Justin’s Letters’ Category

19 October 2018 by megan@spoon

Our Love Letter to Fall

16 August 2018 by megan@spoon

Our Love Letter to Late Summer

2 July 2018 by megan@spoon

Why We Love Summer Up North

11 March 2013 by megan@spoon

Justin’s Letter, Spring 2013

American Spoon’s Spring catalog should arrive at your home sometime this week, and because so many of our customers tell us how much they love reading each season’s letter from Justin, we thought we’d share this Spring’s letter here. Enjoy!

Greetings from Northern Michigan.

By late March here in the Northern Fruitlands, we winter-long denizens are a sun starved people straining for the nourishing light behind every hour of monotonous sky. If it is yearning that refines imaginations we have ample time for that. And so when all else fails we escape into our plans, projections and imaginings, our dreams of Spring.

We know that soon we will wake to a morning of gleeful gulls gorging on worms unearthed by a night of rain, their ravenous squeals crowding out every other birdsong. They will tell us it is time to walk out into the Wildwood Hills again, to see where the snow has melted from the ridges and south facing slopes and find where red stemmed leeks have punctured up, en masse, through the dead skin of leaves. Sometimes the first Trilliums and Trout Lillies will have bloomed when another unwelcome snow submerges them again. But their beauty is only briefly hidden, and soon they are accompanied by the more timid blooms of Dutchman’s Breeches, Jack in the Pulpit, and ubiquitous Spring Beauties that cast a luminous glow of palest pink over all the contours of the forest carpet. Somewhere among them are precious black morels, invisible to the hurried eye, tempting the mind to abide there for a time until they reveal themselves. When the wooded ravines give way to saplings that open to a meadow there is the startling, pre-historic croak of sand hill cranes salting the stillness from high overhead while the first blossoming branches of Juneberry trees wave like a promise in the warming air.

Later in April, or early May we can drive out the Leelanau to glimpse the prospect of luscious apricots in tinted clouds of hilltop blossoms and find hope for deep blue Damsons flowering immaculately in gnarled, old orchards near Suttons Bay. By this summer, our hunger for these will be piqued to the limit. But, what Northern Michigan fruit growers will be seeking most zealously is the sight of an abundant crop of tart Montmorency Cherries that should first appear in early May as earth bound clouds of luminous white blooming against the greening hills and then, hopefully, in July as crowns of ruby-red jewels held aloft in an azure sky to restore our climatological confidence and resurrect a way of life. After the most precarious year of stone fruit scarcity anyone can remember, that will be a vision to behold.

And, perhaps, soon there will come a warm enough day when an aging forager might be tempted to pull on boots and hat to wade out into the wetlands again for cucumber-like cat tail shoots, mint and succulent watercress, and later scan the loamy places along two-tracks for tender wood sorrel and tiny wild strawberries that always bring pickers to their knees. Down there among the fragrant fruit and flowers, one can sense most vividly how endurance is rewarded: the land is fully awake and, having renewed itself, rises up again in all its glory. Another Spring has come.


Justin Rashid, President & Co-founder

21 March 2011 by megan@spoon

Justin’s Letter, Spring 2011

American Spoon’s Spring catalog should arrive at your home sometime this week, and because so many of our customers tell us how much they love reading each season’s letter from Justin, we thought we’d share this Spring’s letter here. Enjoy!

Greetings from Northern Michigan.

After a winter of forgetting summer’s pleasures, spring in our Northern Fruitlands is a time for remembering. The first clues are faint and few: a patch of last year’s grass rises from beneath the snow drifts glistening like spun gold, a pool of water that reflects the sky forms on the ice of Little Traverse Bay. The first morning of mild breezes holds the subtle scents of waking soil and a sip of the sweet sap dripping from the maples as it runs up from thawing roots stirs something akin to happiness.

 

A drive on a mid May afternoon through the Northern Fruitlands from Charlevoix to Northport is a joy ride among panoramic proofs that nothing has been lost or forgotten under the snow. Up on the hilltops of the lake view farms the old apricots trees erupt first risking their red and white flowers that show from a distance as veils of the palest pink. On the airy heights just below, the voluptuous white blooms of sweet cherries soon appear along glistening burgundy limbs followed everywhere by abundant tarts bursting pristine popcorn on charcoal drawn branches against the greening hills. Just as the cherry petals begin to fall, the peach orchards turn comes, their shocking salmon flowers and tawny branches flaming against the still cool skies. And finally, with the warmth moving down into the valleys the gorgeous apple blossoms open on muscular trees of every age and shape. The land remembers all; the trees still know their parts. Spring has come at last and all the treasured fruits of summer are sure to follow.

We look forward to seeing you in our stores again in the months ahead, and on your next visit to Petoskey take time to stroll down East Lake Street to the Bear River. A short hike along its banks reveals how our legendary river has been revitalized with footpaths, a new pedestrian bridge and a mile of cascading white water rapids perfect for river kayaks. In the meantime, please let us know how you like our newly-redesigned catalog, in which we strive to honor the crucial connections among our dedicated local growers, the artisans in our kitchen, and you our customers. Here is the fruit of our land, the work of our hands, may it bring you pleasure! 

 

 

Justin Rashid
President & Co-founder