September 1 – October 31
A favourite among many local people, early fall on Fogo Island is Berry Season. Brilliant sunrises and sunsets fill the skies, the wind is predominantly in the west, and the Island finds itself completely carpeted in dozens of varieties of edible berries.
Slightly cooler temperatures make berry season the perfect time to get outside and amble through the barrens and footpaths while scooping up handfuls of blueberries, raspberries, marshberries, and partridgeberries. Meet and chat with Fogo Islanders on the hills as they too will be out collecting the season’s bounty. If you’re lucky, they might even invite you to their secret berry patch… every Fogo Islander has one.
Festivals continue into fall and include Feile Tilting, a celebration of Tilting’s Irish heritage, as well as the ever-popular Fogo Island Partridgeberry Harvest Festival. Many summertime activities such as fishing and rowing carry through into the early fall, and more traditional Berry Season activities include bottling and canning preserves, smoking fish, seabird and caribou watching, and visits to Little Fogo Islands.
As berries are abundant now, particularly partridgeberries, we get busy making condiments, jams, jellies and shrubs.
This is the season for foraging porcini mushrooms and hops blossoms, which we add like a spice to breads or to infused oils to lend deep and interesting flavours. We use blackened honeycomb as a condiment, and pollen as a flavour builder in vinaigrettes and granites.
Fogo Islanders harvest cabbage, carrots, squash, corn, and rutabaga—island staples for centuries, which hold the sweetness of summer. Tree fruits become readily available, such as cherries, plums and tart little apples, whose taste is intensified through light salting.
Cod fishing is in full swing, so it’s a time to enjoy fresh, smoked or salt cod—which you might so out drying on flakes or on lines around the island at this time. The caribou hunt is underway across Newfoundland, providing wild game.