French Family Ramblin’ Road Rib Recipe

Delicious Ribs with Ramblin' Road Country Pilsner

Delicious Ribs with Ramblin’ Road Country Pilsner

This is one of the French Family Flavourites! So after years of rib recipe trials and t-ribulations, here’s the recipe they have created and selected to share with the Ramblin’ Road Community!



2 1/2 pounds of pork side ribs (about 1 big side )
1 Tbsp. dry Italian seasoning
2 small cooking onions, peeled and quartered
1-2  bottles of Ramblin’ Road Country Pilsner
1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce
1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 cloves garlic (or more if you LOVE IT), minced
1 tsp. dijon prepared mustard
1/4 tsp.ground ginger
1/8 tsp.ground cayenne pepper
1/8 tsp.ground allspice
1/8 tsp.ground cinnamon
1/2 cup pineapple juice
1 tbsp. corn starch

Cooking instructions:
Carefully remove the thin membrane from the bone side of the ribs.
Cut the side of ribs into 3 – 4 equal sections and place in a large deep pot with the onions and seasoning. Add water to just cover the ribs and pour 1/2 a bottle Ramblin’ Road Country Pilsner into the pot. Set the remaining bottle of Pilsner aside (or just drink it because it’s really good!).

Bring to a boil and simmer 1 hour. When done, drain. In a roasting pan or casserole dish place the ribs meat side down and in a single layer.

Ribs soaking in the Ramblin' Road sauce

Ribs soaking in the Ramblin’ Road sauce

While meat is cooking:
Prepare sauce a small saucepan by combining remaining bottle of Pilsner (or pop open a second bottle if you finished off the first earlier) with soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, mustard, ginger, cayenne pepper, allspice and cinnamon.

In a small bowl mix the pineapple juice and corn starch and add it to the mixture in the saucepan. Bring the sauce to a boil and cook, stirring constantly, until thickened.

Pour sauce over the ribs. (You can cover and refrigerate at this point until ready to cook)

Bake uncovered at 375* for 30 minutes (45 minutes if refrigerated) , turn over, and continue cooking an additional 15 minutes or until browned and dazed ( I mean glazed!)

Ramblin' Road Ribbers!

Ramblin’ Road Ribbers!


A very special THANK YOU to Janice French for sharing her Family Recipe with us. We hope that all you Ramblin’ Road lovers will have the opportunity to make these at home. For those creative, we invite you to share your Ramblin’ Road recipes with us!


Brewing Beer in Ontario’s Garden – Wait, where?

Norfolk County FarmThis Canada Day, we are grateful for many things: the wonderful country we live in, our Brewery Farm this summer, but special mention needs to go to our home of Norfolk, and our neighbouring Farmers.

When it came to coming up the Ontario’s Garden slogan it was almost serendipity according to Saj Jamal, the man who’s been credited with putting the two words together in a simple but perfect harmony to describe our home, Norfolk County.

Norfolk County

“Ontario’s Garden” grew out of a wholesale food strategy to give kudos to the farmers and food producers that fills Ontario dinner tables with tasty abundance.

Norfolk County is a special place. We Norfolkians know that we live in one of Canada’s most fertile places to grow a huge variety of foods, but outside our rural region the words Norfolk County are usually responded with blanks stares. We are proud to live and brew beer in the place that we have called home for decade, the discovery that awaits our city friends is marvelous.

Ramblin’ Road beers are just a small bushel of the overall harvest that Norfolk County has to offer.

Norfolk County Did you know that Norfolk County is Ontario’s leading grower of apples, asparagus, cabbage, cucumbers, green onions, peanuts, pumpkins, squash, strawberries, corn, and sweet potato? We’re not kidding, Statistics Canada verified this. Oh, and did we mention Norfolk County is Canada’s largest pumpkin patch.

The diversity of food that Norfolk County can grow, cook, and brew is pretty darn amazing. The diversity is what makes Norfolk County Ontario’s Garden. Remember the backyards that grandma, or nona, or a-ma, used to cover every square inch with tomatoes, beans, cucumbers, and so on? Well, Norfolk is just like that, but 1607 km2.

As Norfolk’s self-proclaimed “ambeersadors”, we pay homage to the diversity of our foodshed by brewing many different beers and growing a variety of hops.

Cheers to Norfolk this Canada Day!

John Picard

Thank You Norfolk

For the Love of the Humble Spud

Potatoes at the Brewery Farm

Potatoes at the Brewery Farm

The potato is probably one of the most humble foods we can grow and eat. I mean who came upon the humble spud with its dirt covered skin and said “that’s going to be delicious!” But we’re glad someone did. There are probably hundreds if not thousands of different variety of potatoes. If you’ve ever come across a seed catalogue then you know what I’m talking about – and that doesn’t even include the wild varieties of potatoes found all over the world.

Interestingly enough potato plants are part of the nightshade family of plants, which tomato, eggplant, peppers, and tobacco also belong to. Norfolk County’s climate and soil conditions are quite ideal for growing these plants. Before farmers here took up horticulture, many farms in Norfolk County grew tobacco as a cash crop – there’s a black and white documentary produced by the National Film Board if you want to see what it used to look like back in the day. Those days are now long gone. Instead Norfolk fields are covered with plants that produce delicious foods, like potatoes.

Potatoes in the pocessing

Potatoes in the pocessing

Ask a potato farmer, “which type of potato should I grow”, and I can guarantee you’ll need at least a 6-pack of our DPA – Dakota Pearl Ale – to share because that’s how long your friendly potato farmer can talk about potatoes. Since I’ve been told that blog posts shouldn’t be 6 beers long to read, here is the reader’s digest version of the type of potato we grow.

It’s called a Dakota Pearl, and rightly so. With very shallow eyes its skin is smooth and bright like a shimmering pearl. We chose this potato with chip making in mind because it comes out of the fryer sturdy, light, and crispy.

Fresh EXTREME Kettle Chips

Fresh EXTREME Kettle Chips

In order for chips to come out of the fryer looking and tasting like chips, its flesh has to be relatively dry and not too sugary or starchy. Who knew that these same properties of the Dakota Pearl would also be perfect as a brewing ingredient too?

It was a few months ago when we said “hey, let’s create a unique beer, one that we can use to wash the sliced potatoes prior to cooking our Kettle Chips. That’ll give us a really great snack chip and hopefully create a fantastic new beer, something very special to Ramblin’ Road.”  All that potato goodness was returned to the brew line where we innovated a process to start the fermenting process again only this time with potato sugars. The smoothness and finished flavours were excellent.

DPA - Dakota Pearl Ale

DPA – Dakota Pearl Ale

We knew we were onto something, so we kept tweaking the recipe. And here we have it, Dakota Pearl Potato Ale for our community. Cheers to you and to potato farmers everywhere!

John Picard


The Erie Beach Hotel

Erie Beach Hotel

Erie Beach Hotel

A short trip from the Brewery Farm, the Erie Beach Hotel is located in Port Dover, a picturesque port town. Becoming one of the first licensees to carry Ramblin’ Road beers, the Erie Beach Hotel became an extended part of our family. Patrons have been able to pair the delicious dishes prepared at the Erie Beach Hotel with Ramblin’ Road draught in the Terrace Room and bottled in both the Terrace and the Cove Room.

Ramblin' Road and Perch

Ramblin’ Road and Perch

For over 60 years, three generations of the Schneider family have looked after the Erie Beach Hotel, serving recipes passed down through the generations that have kept people coming back. In the summer the dining areas will always be bustling with vacationers, day trippers and the locals, all anticipating the freshest and most delicious sea food.

For those looking for the port town experience, an ice cold pint of Ramblin’ Road Country Pilsner, paired with a platter of Perch is recommended. Both represent the true local flavour of Norfolk County.

For other meat lovers, the Country Pilsner can also be paired with the delicious wings in the Terrace Room.

Ramblin' Road Country Ale and the Prime Rib Dinner

Ramblin’ Road Country Ale and the Prime Rib Dinner

The bottled Ramblin’ Road Country Ale is recommended to be paired with the mouth-watering Prime Rib dinner, available only on Fridays between 5pm – 8 pm.

Ramblin' Road and the Wings

Ramblin’ Road and the Wings

For the out of towner’s, we recommend staying at the Erie Beach for your Norfolk get-away, and remember, the Ramblin’ Road Brewery Farm is just a short drive from this historic eatery and hotel.

Picard’s EXTREME Kettle Chips – Available Near You

We all know there is something about those crunchy flavour packed EXTREME Kettle Chips, made fresh at the Brewery Farm, that keeps you coming back for more. You can pick up any of the flavours at the Picard’s stores, located in St. Jacobs, Talbotville, Waterdown, Niagara-on-the-Lake and Waterford. However, if you are not close to any of these Picard’s stores, the Avid Gourmet, a boutique purveyor of finer local fare has now made it even easier for you to get your daily dose of Picard’s EXTREME Kettle Chips. Now they are available at several independent retailers across Southern Ontario and more locations coming soon in the GTA. Check out the locations below to find out where you can satisfy your mouth watering cravings.

Phone Store Location
905-648-6878 Bennett’s Apple & Cider 944 Garner Road East Ancaster ON
519-625-8194 Best Little Pork Shop 2146 Line 34, Hwy #7 Shakespeare
Brandt Meat Packers Ltd 1878 Mattawa Ave Mississauga, ON L4X1K1
519-833-9677 Carvers Block 102 Main Street Erin, ON N0B 1T0
519-291-1094 Carson’s Country Market R.R. #3 5531 Line 86 Listowel, ON N4W 3G8
519-666-0286 Crunican’s Orchard RR #42 23778 Richmond Street London, ON
Davids Gourmet 25 Bruce Street Kitchener, ON
519-434-9893 Doris Family Produce 130 King Street London, ON
519-637-0055 Farmgate Markets Deli & Fresh Meat 19 Elgin Street St. Thomas, ON N5R 3L7
519-669-5403 Foodland 315 Arthur Street Elmira, ON N3B 1Z5
226-383-7374 Fraberts 105 Queen St, W. Unit 3 Fergus, ON N1M 1S6
905-854-5230 International Meats & Deli 11269 Guelph Line Campbelleville, ON L0P 1B0
519-823-8046 MarKet Fresh Meat & Produce 10 Paisley St., Unit #3 Guelph, On N1H 2N6
1-647-435-5340 Multiple Organics 1545 Dundas Street West Toronto, ON M6K 1T6
705-689-5565 Muskoka Meats 2288 A Hwy #11 North Gravenhurst, ON P1P 1R1
905-640-4568 Reesor Farm Kitchen 5758 Main Street Stouffville, ON
Strictly Bulk 2389 Bloor St., West Toronto, ON M6S 1P6
519-653-6661 Sunrise Mills Natural Choice 840 King St., East Cambridge, ON N3H 3P2
905-562-9730 Upper Canada Cheese 4159 Jordon Road Jordan Station, ON L0R 1S0
519-822-2728 Valeriote’s Market 204 Yorkshire Street Guelph, ON N1H 5C1
519-741-1437 Vincenzo’s 150 Caroline St., South Waterloo, ON N2L 0A5
Picard's EXTREME Kettle Chips

Just a few of the incredible EXTREME Kettle Chips

A Short Guide for New Craft Beer Drinkers

If you are new to drinking local craft beer then this short guide is for you. We are not out to get you if you’re a fan of imported or macro-brew suds because there are brewers big and small that do make great beer. When you are drinking a quality beer where the ingredients are pure and straightforward there are a few things to keep in mind.

  1. Temperature: there are no mountains that change colour to tell you the bottle is cold enough to drink. In fact to actually taste what you are drinking cool is better than cold. Like being outside in negative-twenty weather you’re too busy trying to make sure your face isn’t frozen than to really sense much else.
  2. Meant for drinking: a quality beer isn’t meant to be chugged. You should be able to drink it and actually take in the freshness and the flavours and feel of the beer. Maybe you’re not entirely sure what the flavours are, but the point is that there is flavour and you have a sense of refreshment.
  3. Knowing where it comes from: Drinking a locally made beer means you are supporting your community and appreciating the bounty that the region has to offer. Some would call it pride, it’s important that we offer crisp refreshing beers in varieties that appeal to our diverse community, that’s why we’ve taken the unusual step to initially to offer a Country Pilsner, Country Lager and a Country Ale.  So if you’re drinking a Ramblin’ Road beer or another local brew, the best way to appreciate it is by sharing it.
John Picard sampling beer at the Brewery Farm

John Picard sampling beer
at the Brewery Farm

If you’re adventurous, a new craft beer drinker and have a question or thought on beer and its finest moments? Let us know in the comments and we’ll be happy to answer them.


The Brewery Farm Story

If we had a nickel for every time someone asks “what’s a brewery farm?” I’d have a kick-ass bottling line to replace the one I had to leave on the table when we had to challenge the system to get the necessary approvals to launch this project, in the country. Having a brewery in the country, just made sense to a farm boy who grew up in the rural lands of Southwestern Ontario. With all of the interest and support of the community, we decided it was time to tell you the Brewery Farm story. It all started off as a seed of an idea to make a product with a rich agricultural connection and since that time, over the past five years, that seed has grown into the Brewery Farm.

Brewery Farm Hop GardenHaving the good fortune of living in farm country, we are blessed with rich sandy loam that many garden crops thrive in. From this soil, the idea of a Norfolk County microbrewery was planted. Over the past few decades we have tilled Norfolk County’s exceptional soil to grow peanuts; and it is this same type of earth that hops thrive in. Five years ago our family planted our first hop rhizomes, initially six varieties, on a couple of acres just off Swimming Pool Road.

The “farm” in “Brewery Farm” is inspired from the self-sustaining old family farms that stretched across much of Southern Ontario over a century ago. We didn’t simply want a brewery, but rather a brewery that could be self-reliant on the land that it is built on. Traditional farming also means survival by continually diversifying and improving the crops grown in the fields. So, we now grow Dakota Pearl potatoes and eight different varieties of hops – and we can’t wait until the Spring when they start shooting upwards from the thawing grounds. The potatoes are cooked into kettle chips on the farm as well, just recently making a crisp and crunchy debut, in six varieties of extremeness.

John Picard and the Ramblin' Road 6 packsLike any modern family farm we believe that we have to be connected to the community in order to support the community. We want the Brewery Farm to be a place where the folks of Norfolk County and their friends from near and far can gather, sample a freshly brewed premium beer, and appreciate the agricultural roots and innovation of this region. On most weekends, I’m happy to share a sample and talk beer, just ask me a question, it’s a great story.

John Picard