From market to table



Bob Capazzo

Jean-Louis Gerin of Restaurant Jean-Louis remembers being dragged by his grandmother to the local farmers market in his village in France every Thursday and Saturday when he was a young boy. “We had to stop at every single stall — ‘How are you?’ ‘And your son?’ ‘Will he marry that girl?’ — and it would take all day.” His Uncle Paul, the local butcher, would be there at his stand with his farm-raised poultry along with the rest of the Gerin clan — uncles, aunts and cousins. For years after moving to this country, Gerin did not serve chicken in his restaurant because he never found poultry whose taste he liked. Now he buys from a small farmer, and you will find boneless quail stuffed with blue crab on his menu.

Frederic Kieffer of Gaia also remembers his childhood market as a social milieu. “I’ll see you next week,” was always the parting phrase, he says, because, indeed, the market was the place to catch up on the latest news. Frederic can still recall the marshmallows dipped in chocolate from one artisanal candymaker (“there were always candy stalls at the markets,” he says) and the endless rows of fishmongers, bread bakers and farmers, all displaying their goods in a dizzying array of color and selection. One vendor, he recalls, had his own charcuterie of salami, ham, cheese and sausage.

Thomas Henkelmann of his eponymous restaurant at the Homestead Inn was, like his colleagues, exposed to farmers markets at a very young age. His parents, who owned a restaurant in Alsace, were frequent visitors to nearby markets (“every village had their own,” he says). One man, he says, sold foie gras every week.

François Kwaku-Dongo of L’Escale restaurant had a fuller immersion into a farmers market: His grandfather grew pineapples, mangoes and cocoa in West Africa, which were then sold at the village farmers market. François says vegetables purchased there were so fresh, they barely had to be cooked. He takes his commitment to the land of his fathers a step further: He buys cocoa from small-scale farmers in West Africa, has it sent to a candy factory where it is made into chocolate bars called Omanhene (Whole Foods is considering selling them) and then gives some of his profits back to the farmers to help them in maintaining their farms.

Farmers markets help us enjoy the true essence of everything we eat. Each of these talented chefs deals with artisanal cheese makers and local farmers of fruits, vegetables, poultry, dairy and meat. Their producing recipes reflect their creative instincts and the freshness of their ingredients. Such a finely honed symbiosis between land and cook and table will sustain our planet for generations to come.

 

Greenwich Agenda

  • The Many Faces of Multi Media

    2014.09.20
     @ Meli-Melo of Greenwich

    Dr. Julia Trebing, Director Creative Therapies in Stamford, CT exhibits her paintings at Meli-Melo Creperie & Juice Bar  during Sept...

  • Nigh Season: New Paintings By David Konigsberg

    2014.09.13
     @ Kenise Barnes Fine Art

    Dates: September 13 – October 31, 2014 Opening Reception: September 13, 6 – 8:30 PM  Public Invited   NIGH...

  • Undulate: Paintings By Julie Gross and Margaret Neill

    2014.09.13
     @ Kenise Barnes Fine Art

    GALLERY II Dates: September 13 – October 31, 2014 Opening Reception: September 13, 6 – 8:30 PM Public Invited...

  • "Israel and the U.S."

    2014.09.22
     @ New Canaan Library

    The public is invited to attend a World Affairs Forum Great Decisions event featuring Seth Anziska, Columbia University. Mr. Anziska will speak...

  • Parties at the JCC Center

    2014.09.02
     @ Stamford JCC

    A place to celebrate birthdays and special occasions. Be a guest at your own party! The JCC offers a wonderful space for you and your guests to...

  • Holistic Health Practitioner Kevin W. Reese

    2014.09.24
     @ Meli-Melo

    Meet Holistic Health Practitioner Kevin W. Reese & Take Home a Signed Copy of His New Book! Kevin is a holistic health practitioner,...

  • Annual State of the Town Address and Luncheon | Greenwich, CT

    2014.09.25
     @ Milbrook Club

    Greenwich Chamber of Commerce Annual State of the Town Address and Luncheon will be held at Milbrook Club. Registration 11:30am; start at...

  • Greenwich Harbor Sunset Wine Cruise | Greenwich, CT

    2014.06.05
     @ Delamar Hotel Dock

    The boat "Prudence" departs from the Delamar Hotel Dock on 500 Steamboat Rd. All the wine is sponsored through VALS with food...

  • Verismo - Opera Arias and Ensembles

    2014.09.26
     @ Round Hill Community Church

    Music from the Heart at Round Hill  “Verismo – Arias and Ensembles,” an opera concert, will bring drama and passion...

  • Aaron Henry Trunk Show & Personal Appearance

    2014.09.26
     @ Richards

  • Curiosity Concerts Season Opening: SONIC ESCAPE

    2014.09.27
     @ Greenwich Library Cole Auditorium

    The Greenwich Arts Council's Curiosity Concerts opens its second season of free classical music concerts for families on Saturday, Sept. 27,...

  • SM&NC Farm Market

    2014.06.15
     @ Stamford Museum & Nature Center

    Sundays, June 15 – October 5, 10am – 2pm We're thrilled to bring back the SM&NC Farm Market — now on Sundays!...

  • Bistro Versailles Wine Dinner

    2014.09.29
     @ Bistro Versailles

    Wine dinners at Bistro Versailles are entertaining social events held on a regular basis. Socialize with friends and mingle with other...

  • Joie Special Shopping Event

    2014.09.30
     @ Joie

    Joie invites you to a special shopping event! Enjoy wine & hor d'oeuvres while shopping 20% off your purchase Enter to win a...

  • SPLURGE Matches Scarf Donations for Cancer Patients

    2014.10.01
     @ SPLURGE

    SPLURGE and the Cancer Institute at Greenwich Hospital are partnering to bring comfort and encouragement to cancer patients.  From October...

  • Breast Cancer Alliance's Go For Pink Shopping Event

    2014.10.02
     @ Greenwich Avenue area

    Breast Cancer Alliance announced that it is partnering with Greenwich merchants for a special day of events and shopping on Thursday, October 2nd...

  • Laurel House Family Seminar Series

    2014.09.18
     @ Laurel House

    Thursday evenings, September 18, October 2, 16, 30, 6:30-8:00 pm Join us Thursday evenings for this four part Family Seminar Series as...

  • Muddy Up 5k Adventure Run & Family Fun Walk

    2014.10.05
     @ Camp Simmons

    Are you ready for some MUDDY fun? Boys & Girls Club of Greenwich is proud to host the 3rd annual Muddy Up 5k Adventure Run & Family Fun...


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