Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Chevy Farm-to-Table Dinner | Bartram's Garden

5400 Lindbergh Boulevard
Philadelphia, PA 19143
(215) 729-5281

So maybe you are more cultured than I (probably), but I had HEARD of Bartram's Garden, yet failed to actually ever make it there. When Chevy invited me for a Farm to Table event with a pre-dinner, curator's tour & talk about the history, I was excited. Even though it meant traveling through West Philly.

The curator, Joel Fry, walked us through the original house before dinner (which was uncharacteristically lit with torchiere lamps by way of orange extension cords from the nearby modern buildings), and presented a slideshow going deeper into some of the history of John Bartram. Let me tell you, it's some old stuff – people were WAY cooler/tougher/more interesting back in the day. Now get back to Twitter, nerd. This took an unexpected aggressive turn. Let's get back on track.

The event was put on to showcase some of the big players in the local food movement, and one fat guy who will eat just about anything *a hem*. Catered by Devine, all of the ingredients were sourced relatively locally and listed on the menu, which was a nice touch.

The table was set with local cheeses from Valley Shepherd Creamery in RTM and some non-local crackers.

The aged Gouda and creamy Cemembert were the winners for me.

THAT is some blue cheese.

The "butlered horderves" started with tiny burgers, and a special sauce dip. I definitely did not stop at one.

Complete with tiny pickle and tiny tomato garnish. I will say, it was a bit odd having to dip a burger sidelong into a similarly tiny ramekin full of special sauce.

That said, it was too cute and the dip actually reminded me of a Big Mac. Yum.

There were some hollowed out potatoes with a ratatouille filler. Delicious.

Probably my favorite dish of the night was the mushroom tart with a blend of wild 'shrooms in a crispy phyllo dough dish.

Delightfully mushroomy.

Carmelized apple on toast with brie was another that came in the onslaught of hand-delivered appetizers.

Here, the lucky reader/winner from our contest shows off the bread basket.

Here was a salad picked THAT MORNING, from the onsite garden. Amazing. It was topped with a Yards Pynk-based dressing. (Note: the only booze served came on a salad.)

The butternut squash lasagna had more of the mushroom filling from above, and ate like a meal. At this point, I was thinking about how I should NOT have had multiples of every appetizer that came through. But I powered on.

It's so nice having the mushroom capital of the world right at our back door. Didn't you know it's Kennet Square?

Sweet potato puree was not my favorite, but seemed to be somewhat popular.

The brussel sprouts and roasted salt and pepper potatoes were great, if for no reason other than we got to watch one of the other diners try the sprouts FOR THE FIRST TIME EVER. She was not sold on them. I'm pretty sure she almost spit it out.

Next was flank steak with Chimmichurri and creamy horseradish sauce.

Now that looks like a meal. On top of another meal.

Cooked to a nice medium.

Although usually not a dessert guy, the apple turnover with Bassett's vanilla ice cream was probably the best thing all night. What a wonderful end to an overly filling meal.

Next time you need something to do, go historical and check out Bartram's Garden. And sample some local fair at the Fair Food Farmstand at Reading Terminal. You will not be disappointed.

1 comment:

Kaitlin @ I Can Cook That said...

This is such a great summary of that night! Your photos are fantastic by the way!