Our first Dinner in the Field of the season was held Saturday night in a humid but blissfully not too buggy field, that was 99.9% rain free. Luckily it was 200% magical and everything we hoped for. Thank you so much to all of our guests for joining us, and hopefully you enjoyed the night as much as we did. Also great thanks to our friends at Island Creek Oyster Farm and Truro Vineyards for joining us for the evening, providing oysters to kick off the night and wines to pair with the meal throughout. What a wonderful evening to keep it local!
Following is the menu of the night, told in words and pictures for those who were not able to join and those who perhaps wonder if they should in the future. The answer is yes, and as of today you still can by the way.
The evening kicked off at 6 with an introduction from Dave Volante, setting out the tempo of the evening and welcoming everyone. Brian from Island Creek arrived early to shuck about 10 dozen oysters from their Duxbury farm, and then told us a bit about their method and history. The oysters were paired with a homemade Garden Mignonette and Cocktail Sauce with Truro’s 2012 American Rosé. Certainly such a hit that table mates were rushing to sneak the last ones out from each other’s noses!
Dave Roberts of Truro Vineyards spoke to us about all this and all the wine from his family’s vineyard. Todd then stepped out of the kitchen to address the crowd, as the first Appetizer arrived. The “Lunch Plate” was a Braised Pork Belly served on a fresh Pretzel Bun with Spicy Hoppy Mustard made with Jack’s Abby Beer and a Farmer’s Slaw. On the side were Chioggia Beet Chips and a crisp house pickle. This rich start paired nicely with Truro’s 2011 Zinfandel, newly award-winning Wine of the Year, and as of today available on our shelves as well.
I took a few minutes then to explain how and where we grow our vegetables at Volante’s, a bit about what crops were growing right around us, and then answered a few questions about home gardens to fill my time slot. I had been thinking more about harvesting than speaking all day but muddled through! I did get the opportunity to explain that all of the dinnerware for the evening was fully compostable. This includes the plates, flatware and “glass”ware, making our waste footprint very small for the evening.
The Salad Course arrived family style, a mix of nine homegrown lettuces were tossed, chopped and topped with bright Nasturtium Blossoms and an Onion and Fennel Vinaigrette. These built a bed for the Roasted Beets w/ Fresh Weeds ( long story but we were very sustainable last night) and Horseradish Croutons. Additionally a Four Star Farm WheatberrySalad with preserved Lemons and Whipped Feta Yogurt gave a hearty fresh punch to the salad plate. Truro offered their 2011 Chardonnay to brighten the beverage end of this course.
While appetites were sated we paused to mingle some more and hear from Todd about the night’s Entreés, his philosophy about farm cooking, and several “very funny” jokes.
Dishes arrived, family style again, with fresh Herb Cannelloni with Zucchini, Summer Squash, Baby Arugula and Kale Pesto as well as a Ginger Scallion Chicken Breast with spiced Carrots and Peas. Truro’s 2011 Triumph brought the necessary heft to the heartiest portion of the meal. This course also saw sides of early summer vegetables like Romano beans and Corn as well as Roasted Broccoli.
For dessert our bakery put together a Trio of Desserts featuring the farm’s flavors. A lemon Verbena Panna Cotta dripping with Homegrown Blueberries, as well as a homegrown Blueberry Crumble Pie with a scoop of Crescent Ridge Ginger Ice Cream. Then for the vegetable twist a very necessary Zucchini Chocolate Ganache Cake.
By this point we were nearly in the dark, and though dry, the mosquitoes were finding their way. So as desserts and conversations trailed off, guests and staff found their way back up and out of the field, to see it re-transform into the familiar old family farm this morning. A marvelous night showcasing all of the wonderful talents and efforts of the team here at Volante’s and a great way to enjoy a very casual but special evening down on the farm. Check out the gallery below for more snapshots from the night and consider joining us for the next one, we missed you!