NoRA Cupcake Company & CT Food and Farm

The internet is a crazy place. Over the summer I somehow stumbled upon Connecticut Food and Farm's podcast. I listened to a few of the podcast's and really enjoyed what they were doing on the podcasts, as well as on their blog. I reached out expressing interest in working with them as a photographer. Skip forward a few months and we were finally able to schedule something. 

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Winter, who is a founding member of the Coventry Regional Farmer's Market (one of the biggest markets in the state of Connecticut), reached out and asked if I'd be interested in photographing local businesses that participate in the market to help document 'what happens before they go to market'.  I love hearing about people who have followed their dreams and worked hard to make them a reality so I was interested when she mentioned doing a shoot at NoRA Cupcake Company

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NoRA Cupcake Company was opened up a few years back, in 2011, by Carrie.  She had been a bartender across the street at Eli Cannon's Tap Room (great selection of beer if you are in the area) and had a passion for baking and local business. With Eli’s owner, Phil Ouellette, as her partner she moved across the street and opened NoRA on New Year’s Eve day 2011.

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We met up on a Saturday morning, right before the shop opened, and were able to watch the process as the staff prepared cupcakes for the day and for a big event they had the following day.  Seeing the wall of sweet confection toppings and the huge trays of fresh baked cupcakes was so cool. It's inspiring to be in a space that others create what they love in. 

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Once the doors opened for business, the place was bustling with people milling in and out. Everyone was happy and friendly (how could you not be?) and you could tell that everyone had a real passion for what they do. The thing I loved most about NoRA Cupcake Company was their creative take on cupcake flavors.  Most notable: Irish Car Bomb, Bourbon Apple Crumble, Funfetti (with edible glitter!) and Rocky Road. 

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I ended the shoot with a colorful assortment of one dozen cupcakes to take home.  They were saved to be shared after a big family dinner, cutting each one in to slivers so that all of us could have the chance to sample the flavors. A pretty great way to end a Saturday. 

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A big thanks to Winter and Carrie for setting up this opportunity. If you are in the area, NoRA Cupcake is located at 700 Main Street in Middletown, CT. They are also a part of the Coventry Farmer's Market from June - October. 

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Apple Orchard & t.e.l.l. New England

It's been a busy few months for me. With starting a new job, moving in to a new apartment and the holidays I have barely had any time to photograph. I was saddened when I took my camera out on Tuesday to take headshots of my coworkers for our new website and realized the last time I had used my camera was November 2nd.

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We are in the throes of winter now, with New England getting about a foot of snow in the last week.  Looking back on these photos I laugh at the thought that on this day we were complaining that it was chilly because we had to put a light sweater on as the sun went down.  Now I can't even be warm inside without a sweater on. 

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On this particular day I spent the early evening with a good friend, Erica, wandering her family's fruit orchard and then making apple crisp as part of a piece for t.e.l.l. New England's fall issue.  If you haven't already checked out t.e.l.l. New England, you should. These photos, plus more, and the recipe for the crisp are in their fall issue. Plus there are many other talented writers and photographers who shared their fall New England stories.  They are an inspiring publication to work with and I am excited to collaborate with them for the winter issue!

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Other than that I am excited to get back behind the lens and shoot some photos over my winter 'break', I am lucky to get about a week and a half off from work during Christmas and New Years.  It is also exciting that many friends will be home during the holidays, so it will be nice to spend time with them and family.  

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Food: Farmer's Market

I have had the opportunity to work a few farmer's markets with Woodland Farm, who operate out of South Glastonbury, CT. My friend Erica's family owns the farm and we met in Boston during college.  The crazy thing is that we grew up literally across the river from each other and out of thousands of incoming freshmen, we were assigned the same dorm room.  

Pears and Plums

Pears and Plums

We just recently started a blog, Orchard Diaries, where we use all the gorgeous fruit her farm produces to create recipes. It's been a dream of ours to collaborate on something like this for a few years now and I'm happy we are finally able to.

Some varieties of apples

Some varieties of apples

Going to the market is such a cool experience.  It's really interesting to see all of the different kinds of varieties of fruits and vegetables and to see what people are buying. For the most part, people are there buying their food for the week but every once in a while you get someone who is seeking out something particular for a recipe.  Hearing what people are going to make with their fruit and learning about some new ways to use the fruit is my favorite part.  Hearing about people roasting grapes, making German plum tarts or making lemongrass jam is the highlight of working the markets and can provide some great inspiration for us. 

Peaches

Peaches