If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you probably saw my tweets/photos from last week’s Slow Food dinner with Eric Schlosser. And they probably made you drool. I’m not sorry! I had to share the food and drink that, for one night, brought everyone together to talk slow and sustainable food.
Eric Schlosser came to town for a lecture with McKendree University and Slow Food was lucky enough to wrangle him for a dinner at the beautiful Farmhaus restaurant, closed for the week for staff retreat. Chef Josh Galliano graciously offered to create a feast that was more artwork than dinner, and Perennial Artisan Ales donated their Black Walnut Dunkel Weiss to help celebrate the event.
Mr. Schlosser is the ground-breaking author of Fast Food Nation and co-producer of a little documentary you may have heard of – Food, Inc. Best known as an investigative journalist, Eric discusses the faults in our nations food system and what we can do about it, all in a way that the general public feels a connection to. In his pre-dinner speech, he laid the framework for the upcoming dinner, stating,
“Getting involved in the Slow Food movement is about so much more than a good meal, but isn’t it great that the meal comes with it?”
Cocktail hour: Galliano’s famous Praline Bacon, and Egg Custard Cups, Pickled Black Walnuts, Radishes.
Paired with: Perennial Artisan Ale’s Black Walnut Dunkel Weiss
Those eggs were the perfect Spring bite.
First Course: Ike Jime Tilapia, Beets
Paired with: Chaumette Winery’s Traminette
The beets arrived in the form of chips and what was quite unexpectedly a beet marshmallow. I later learned that “Ike Jime” is the technique with which the fish is killed, minimizing pain and allowing for a better looking fish.
Second course (my favorite): Roasted Chicken with Asparagus, Stinging Nettle Cavatelli, Grated Egg, Pecan Soil
Paired with: Bethlehem Valley Vineyard’s Chardonel
Everything about this dish screamed Spring. All those greens blended together with the slight crunch of pecans over a succulent piece of chicken.
Third course: Sorghum Glazed Pork Loin, Butter Roasted Radish, Sorghum Gastrique, Turnip and Mustard Puree
Paired with: Sugarcreek Winery’s Chambourcin
Rich and buttery, with crispy pork skin that was the highlight of the meal.
Fourth Course: Spring Lamb, Purslane, Spinach, Soft Herbs, Persillade
Paired with: Mt. Pleasant Winery’s Norton
Another rich, yet somehow light with all those greens, dish.
Fifth Course: Young Chevre, Rhubarb Chips, Sweet Pea Ice Cream, Whipped Honey, Mint Oil
Paired with: Augusta Winery’s Vignoles Icewine
Do I need to describe this dish? In this case, a picture is worth a thousand
During dessert, Mr. Schlosser walked from table to table, introducing himself and asking patrons about their involvement with the Slow Food movement. As the two lovely women sitting across from me expressed their admiration for his work, he stated,
“I just write about it. You actually do it!”
A humble man, using the pen and the camera to enlighten America to it’s future in food.
Question: Have you read Fast Food Nation and/or seen Food, Inc?