Locally Made Winkler
When I think of exploration, I usually think of walking down trails or swimming in lakes and looking up at the sky from an angle I’d never experienced before. I think of walking the streets of a new city, poking my head into different storefronts, waving at faces unknown.
This may be how you #explorewhatwerefamousfor when you visit our wonderful cities. But, through the entrepreneurial pursuits of our citizens, you can do so in other ways, too. The products made here can now be seen throughout the province; some products can be found throughout the country! As you’ll see, there are loads of ways to explore Morden-Winkler through taste, sip, and sight.
Spenst Brothers Pizzas. The name alone causes mouths to water.
For those who know (everyone in the Winkler/Morden area), there is no rival to Spenst, who have managed to perfect the frozen pizza.
Spenst Brother’s Premium Meats is a family-owned and operated meat-store, deli, and farm in the heart of Winkler. They raise beef, which they feed barley, corn, and hay grown on-farm. The cows are also raised hormone and steroid-free, so you can feel good about the products lining their shelves.
The pizzas, though, may just be what makes Winkler famous. The crusts, sauces, and meats are all hand-made and assembled in-store. Dare I call crust magical? Theirs is. You can expect thin, flaky, buttery crusts, as well as mixed cheeses, a variety of high-quality meats and fresh, quick-frozen veggies.
These pizzas are great in the oven (throw on the broiler for one minute at the end to brown the cheese!), but are also delectable in an outdoor oven, or even over fire. Such is their infamy, that these pizzas are now available throughout the province, as far north as Thompson. You can find them in the frozen section of grocers, gas stations, and other retailers. When you see them, get them before they’re gone!
Other Brothers Coffee Roasters. You’ve got to get your hands on a bag of these beans!
Between the moment the beans were picked to the moment the coffee is poured, 2-6 months have passed. 1-2 months of slow travel from various parts of the world occurred, as did 1-3 months of drying the beans.
Now the coffee beans sit in burlap sacks in the processing room at Other Brother Roasters, located in central Winkler. Once they arrive, owner Erin Plett roasts them to order, making the final product as fresh as possible. These beans are different than what sits in bags or cans lining grocery-store shelves. Other Brother works directly with an importer that stresses the importance of ethically sourced beans. This means that the beans they roast come from farms who facilitate ethical practices such as fair pay for workers. One of their particular favourites comes from a co-op in Colombia run entirely by women.
While that alone is reason to get behind their product, Other Brother coffee itself is great. Coffee beans sourced from different countries come from different soil compositions and are grown at varying elevations, so they have distinct and unique aromas and flavours. In the 7 years that Other Brother has been open, they’ve perfected the craft of roasting beans to bring out the best in both categories.
It may sound complicated, but Erin makes it easy. Even if you have no previous knowledge of coffee beans or brewing methods, Erin says that in her shop, creating a comfortable space for the community is key! She wants guests to come in and ask questions. So, whether you prefer a French press, V60, a coffee siphon, or even if you have no idea what those brew methods are and prefer stick to your trusty drip-pot, you will love Other Brother Coffee Roasters.
Paintings by Des Hildebrand. You know Des’ art if you’ve seen it.
Moody, intriguing subjects are brought to life in a variety of medias, mainly oil and acrylic painting. She’s inspired by many things. From the art world, she draws quirk from low-brow, pop-art style icons such as Andy Warhol or Roy Lichtenstein. Lessons on structure were born from surrealist artists, as well as impressionists such as Degas.
Her subjects are inspired by her life. Growing up on a farm with the Pembina Valley in her backyard, Des was exposed to all-things-outdoors from the beginning. Now passionate about motorcycles, nature, and a variety of extreme sports, her art explores those passions while poking fun at normality. Bright pops of color often contrast monochromatic backgrounds, and sometimes conflicting subjects give the viewer reason to smile and ponder, reminding viewers to not take life too seriously.
Des’ paintings can be found hanging in Willow Creek, a home goods store in downtown Winkler she opened with her Mom, Sonya. As to where she paints, the answer is simple: at home, surrounded by the things she loves.