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Living the Dream

Article and Photos by Jessica McCafferty

Nestled in the beautiful green hills of Willsboro is a local Breadery that is a little slice of heaven. Dan and Kimmy Rivera grew up in the Hudson Valley where they met and married in 2002. Dan was in marketing and Kimmy in office management. Both had grown up with a love of food. Kimmy’s grandfather and father had been bakers in Indiana and Dan’s large Puerto Rican and Italian families were deeply centered around good food.

In March of 2009, Dan’s job took them to Norway and while living there the couple vacationed in Italy where they attended a bread class with Carl Shavitz, of the Artisan Bread School. There they found their calling in a simpler, less corporate life. The couple had been toying with the idea of returning to the states and starting a small farm. Their research showed that the Champlain Valley afforded a two week longer growing season due to the lake and valley.

While visiting family in Saranac Lake in 2013 they found a farm listed on Craigslist and reached out for a tour. They walked the property with the owner expressing their hopes for this little oasis nestled in the hills. The owner felt she had found the right people and vision for the land and set up owner financing with the Riveras.

While the couple had a location, they had a lot of work ahead of them to be able to move in. They could not live or bake on the property to start, so while renovations got under way the couple rented various kitchen spaces to get their name and products out there. The Riveras started out with booths at seven farmers markets. Their first was the Westport Winter Market at the Heritage House. Even now, with their growth and expansion, the Farmers Markets are still a staple of the farm’s income.

Once the renovations were complete, the couple built a tiny house for living space and they were ready for the farm to be their main distribution point. Milling, baking and bagging for resale were all done on site. All the grain is organic, and locally sourced as much as possible. They use a slow fermentation process and wood fired oven for the complex flavors in their breads.

The farm also offers grass-fed beef, pastured poultry, laying hens, and a micro dairy which they hope will one day provide milk for their baked goods. They also sell eggs, whole birds, stock, and wings from the poultry and shares to purchase beef by the pound or in quarter or half cow portions. For those just looking to enjoy nature, there is a beautiful riverside trail on the property that is maintained by Champlain Area Trails (CATs). Not only does it offer beautiful views of the Bouquet River, but a wonderful place to bird watch with over 80 different species spotted.

While 2020 had its effect on everyone, Triple Green Jade Farm streamlined and expanded. Introducing farm to table events like barbecues at the farm, under a tent, overlooking the pasture and the beautiful mountains. The entire meal is sourced from the farm and local farming friends. They also offer whole grain workshops and, each September, one is taught by the man who started it all for Kimmy and Dan — their mentor, Carl Shavitz. Now based in the UK, Shavitz runs a five-day intensive artisan bread course at the Breadery. The course is so popular they’re now in the 3rd year of offering it at the farm.

By the beginning of 2023 the Riveras were outgrowing the Breadery’s footprint. In June of this year they purchased a store front with a commercial kitchen on Champlain Avenue in Westport to keep up with their wholesale volume. The location is being used to bake cookies, crackers and rolls and is currently open to the public for Pop-up Market Sundays, which are posted on social media. Their vision for “Trigo” is a cross between a bakery and farm store like the Hub on the Hill. Trigo, is wheat in Spanish, and a nod to Dan’s Puerto Rican heritage. The space will offer the products their farm produces as well as make space for other local artisans. The store will be self-serve and offer tables to sit and enjoy some of your purchases. This will certainly be exciting business growth for the couple.

Until the Westport location is open, you can find Dan and Kimmy at local farmers markets in Saranac Lake, Wilmington and Peru with breads, buns, cookies, and crackers. You can even find Kimmy’s Krakkers at the Lake George ADK Welcome Center on the Northway!

Also be sure to watch their website and social media for pops up markets and various farm events or stop by the farm, walk the trail, meet the cows, or say hi to one of the many “Henriettas” scratching in the yard. It really is a little slice of heaven.

Triple Green Jade Farm 624 Mountain View Dr Willsboro, NY 12996 518-302-1828

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