2016 Local and Heritage Turkey Guide

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By Analiese Paik

Are you looking to celebrate Thanksgiving with a locally grown, Heritage breed or Broad-Breasted white turkey? Supplies are limited, so order your turkey as soon as possible following the instructions given by each farmer or retailer.

It feels good to support our farmers this time of year, give thanks for those who feed us, and opt out of buying an industrial turkey, which doesn’t taste like much anyway.

On the Rocks Farm, Newtown, CT

First Come First Served, Almost Sold Out (20 left)

bourbon red
Bourbon Red turkey, photo c/o Slow Food USA’s Ark of Taste

On the Rocks Farm in Newtown raises chickens, ducks and turkeys organically. Farmer Bill Pieragostini raised 75 Bourbon Reds and Standard Bronze this year, and all but a handful are sold to regular customers and those of you who bought your turkeys from him last year after reading our guide (thanks for being great repeat customers!). Heritage turkeys run $7 a pound and vary in weight from 12 to 20 pounds, much smaller than industrial Broad-Breasted Whites. They’re leggier too with less breast meat and overall more dark meat. If you’re looking for an authentic Thanksgiving flavor, this is it. To order your turkey, email Bill at wpieragostini@yahoo.com with your order (name, phone, turkey breed and size) and he’ll call you to take a $40 deposit by credit card over the phone. The week before Thanksgiving, Bill will arrange to meet you to pick up your turkey and pay the balance. Don’t delay if you want one of these organic, Heritage turkeys!

Ox Hollow Farm

ox hollow farmOrder your pasture-raised, Broad-Breasted White turkey directly from Ox Hollow Farm at the Winter Westport Farmers’ Market, which starts on November 12, or the Darien Farmers’ Market.  Pick up your fresh turkey on Wednesday, November 23, from 10-3 at the Darien Farmers’ Market. Expect to give a $50 deposit and your contact information when placing an order.

Ekonk Hill Turkey Farm, Moosup, CT

Ekonk Hill is the largest grower of free-range, pasture-raised turkeys in the state and this year their turkeys are again available for home delivery through CT Farm Fresh Express (more information below) and at retail through Fleisher’s Craft Butchery in Westport and Greenwich (more information below). While the breed is Broad-Breasted White, they taste nothing like supermarket turkeys from industrial farms. These turkeys are raised on pasture where they forage for bugs and insects and are raised without antibiotics and hormones. For anyone accustomed to eating store-bought turkeys, these are an excellent step up and a vote for local food!

CT Farm Fresh Express (CTFFE)

Connecticut Farm Fresh Express (CTFFE), an online seller of Connecticut Grown foods, is selling fresh and frozen turkeys from two CT farms for home delivery. Delivery fees vary depending upon where you live and are calculated when you place your order online.

Free-range fresh (not frozen) Broad-Breasted Whites from Ekonk Hill Turkey Farm (see above) are $4.99 per lb. Broad-Breasted Bronze, a Broad-Breasted American Bronze (Heritage cross-breed), is available from Monument Hill Farm at $7.49 per lb. 

These birds are pasture-raised without the use of chemicals or antibiotics. Whole, breast, legs or bones for stock are available frozen priced per pound. Please follow the ordering instructions on the CTFFE website carefully when you place your order pre-order now through November 18. Home deliveries are on the Monday or Tuesday before Thanksgiving.

CTFFE’s web store is open between Thursday evenings until Tuesdays at 10 a.m. for you to place your order. You can pay by Visa or MasterCard.

Mike’s Organic Delivery

Mike’s Organic Delivery is an online seller of NY and CT Grown foods that delivers to your door. Mike serves Greenwich, Riverside, Cos Cob, Old Greenwich, Stamford, Darien, and New Canaan and is accepting orders for fresh (not frozen), pasture-raised, Broad-Breasted White turkeys from third generation run Hemlock Hill Farm in Cortlandt Manor, NY. Visit the website to learn more and place an order for fresh turkey, side dishes, or a ready-to-serve Thanksgiving feast.  Read our feature story about Mike’s Organic Delivery.

Fleisher’s Craft Butchery, Westport and Greenwich

Hidden Camp Farm’s pastured organic turkey. Photo c/o Hidden Camp Farm.

Fleisher’s Craft Butchery is offering fresh (not frozen), pasture-raised, non-GMO fed, Broad-Breasted White turkeys from Ekonk Hill Farm in Moosup, CT; Lancaster Farm Fresh in Lancaster, PA; Hidden Camp Farm in Canahojarie, NY, and Autumn’s Harvest in Romulus, NY. Reserve your turkey online with a $60 deposit, then pay the balance when you pick up in the Greenwich or Westport store the week of Thanksgiving. Pasture-raised, non-GMO Project verified (and no corn or soy) Heritage breed turkeys from BN Ranch in Bolinas, CA are also available for $11.99 per pound and can be reserved online with a $60 deposit, then picked up in store the week of Thanksgiving. Reserve online by 10/31 for $10 off. Reserve online after 11/1 for $5 off. 

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