By Julie Williams
Returning for its fourth year, King Cole’s Duck Fest was a resounding success as 3,000 visitors flocked to the site to sample the waterfowl served up in a multitude of ways.
King Cole partners with chefs from around the region to host the one-day sampling extravaganza. Duck heart anticucho, Mushu duck, pulled duck poutine, duck mac-n-cheese, duck ceviche and egg, duck breast salad, duck tacos, smoked duck, duck spiedini, duck wings, duck breast and even dessert – duck fat shortbread with confit – were on the menu.
Patricia Thompson, King Cole Ducks’ sales and marketing VP, and her three sisters are third generation female farmers who lead the flock.
“It’s a time of year to invite customers to try our products for free and to see the interesting mix of dishes the chefs have created,” says Thompson. “A big part of the day is to share with our customers where the food came from. It’s an opportunity to chat and for them to ask questions. It’s a really neat atmosphere.”
Duck Fest has grown in popularity, with triple the attendance from its inaugural year in 2015.
“Our products appeal to a wide variety of cultural backgrounds,” said Thompson.
Among the more popular items purchased at the event were fresh-farm eggs, smoked duck breast and whole duck for the upcoming holiday season.
The festival is a huge undertaking. Eighty staff, friends and family, including high school students who pitched in for their volunteer hours, volunteered to ensure the day ran smoothly.
Main photo: Volunteer, Mike Spence served up King Cole’s wildly delicious duck spiedini at the fourth annual Duck Fest. Julie Williams photos