Pink rose petals suspended in jelly.
Artisans Maureen and John Drew have found a way to work together with their gourmet food products and also truly enjoy where they live in Parksville on Vancouver Island. The creative couple had a booth for their business, Artisan Edibles, at Studio Fair over the weekend and local “foodies” were fascinated with the beautiful presentation and packaging of their jellies, chutneys, antipasto and dessert sauces.
Like many small businesses, theirs keeps getting bigger.
They started out in British Columbia and now their products can be found in fine food stores and delicatessens across Canada and in Germany – soon they will be in other places in Europe.
“We hand pick wild roses in June, says Maureen, “They are so beautiful and they grow wild on Vancouver Island where we live. There’s only about a three-week window to pick them. Then we infuse champagne with wild roses to give them flavour and we add red roses for colour. During the preserving process, we add our own heritage formula.”
For gift giving, there is a gift bag with a rose petal scone mix and jar of rose petal jelly. Packaging is very important to the Drews – they even have a signature gift collection – so is supporting the growth of local communities.
“As a proud member of the Small Scale Food Processors Association,” we strive to be innovative and insist on supporting our local food industry wherever possible,” it says on their website (www.artisanedibles.com). The website also describes Artisan Edibles’ rose petal jelly, apple fig ginger chutney and antipasto with albacore tuna as a “culinary adventure in a jar.”
And indeed it was for shoppers who stopped by their booth on Sunday.
Their products can be paired with an array of different cheeses and fine wine, with artisan breads or crackers, seafood or meats. They can be used for everything from appetizers to main course to dessert toppings. Part of the secret to their success is the magical combination of flavours, says Maureen – the freshly picked fruit, scent of wild rose petals and the spices.
Their business gives the Drews a chance to work together, to travel about and create new flavours.
Previously, Maureen had a career as a branding and marketing specialist and John is retired from his executive position in the lumber industry. Married for 35 years, they have been working together on Artisan Edibles for the past 10 years. For more information about Artisan Edibles visit their website at www.artisanedibles.com where you can find recipes for all their products, culinary delicacies such as blueberry lavender jelly, power smoothie with pomegranate hot pepper jelly, and antipasto pizza.
Or find them at facebook.com/artisanedibles.