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

  • Foot and Ankle Surgeon and Physiatrist join ONS

    2014.09.02
     @ Orthopaedic & Neurosurgery Specialists, PC

    We are pleased to announce that orthopedic surgeon Sean Peden, MD and interventional physiatrist Christopher Sahler, MD have joined the ONS...

  • 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...

  • 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...

  • GREENWICH FASHION ON THE AVENUE

    2014.09.05
     @ Greenwich Avenue

      GREENWICH FASHION ON THE AVENUE TO BE HELD SEPTEMBER 5 FEATURING LIVE RUNWAY SHOW, CAR AND BOAT SHOW Greenwich Avenue will...

  • 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!...

  • Exclusive Tour of Modern and Contemporary Art at the Yale University Art Gallery

    2014.09.09
     @ Yale University Art Gallery

    Join JCC Greenwich for an exclusive tour with museum curator Elizabeth Manekin. The collection is noteworthy for exemplary works from the...

  • Junior League of Greenwich's New Member Open House

    2014.09.09
     @ Junior League of Greenwich

    Please join us for cocktails and casual conversation to learn more about the Junior League of Greenwich and how you can become a member. ...

  • Understanding the Gaza War: Strategic & Political Implications

    2014.09.09
     @ Greenwich Library, Cole Auditorium

    Dr. Efraim Inbar is a Professor in Political Studies at Bar-Ilan University and Director of its renowned Begin-Sadat Center for Strategic...

  • Bruce Museum: Look and See - Into the Deep

    2014.09.10
     @ Bruce Museum

    A program especially designed for children ages 3-5 years and their adult caregivers, who will explore the Museum’s exhibition through...

  • College Admissions Boot Camp | Greenwich, CT

    2014.09.13

    College Prep 360 will be offering two college admissions “boot camps” in their Greenwich office over the summer. The first workshop...

  • 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...

  • Greenwich Area Newcomers Annual Lobster Fest

    2014.09.14
     @ Tod's Point Clambake Area

    This is our kickoff event each year-held at Tod's Point Clambake area. The event is scheduled for Sunday September 14th starting...

  • Information Fair

    2014.09.16
     @ YMCA

    Our Annual Information Fair - This event showcases non profits , community businesses, schools and  services in the Greenwich...

  • 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...

  • Arts & Crafts on Bedford

    2014.09.20
     @ Bedford Street

    Shop at over 100 craft and artisan boutiques on Bedford Street, which will be closed to traffic for the weekend. Dine in our extended sidewalk...


Show More...

Most Popular Articles

  1. Best of Greenwich
    Delamar Greenwich Harbor
  2. 10 Things Greenwich Teens Can Do This Summer
    One Greenwich teen shares some suggestions for summer fun!
  3. American Red Cross: Red and White Ball 2014
    NetJets Hangar at Westchester County Airport
  4. Villa Maria School: Annual Spring Gala
    Richards of Greenwich
  5. Save the Children Benefit
    Riverside Yacht Club