I was invited to attend the 9th Annual Clyde's Farm Dinner at Willow Creek Farm: one of the Slow Food DC events.
I will be the first one to admit that my refrigerator and pantry are not full of organic and local produce and staples from farmers' market. The convenience of shopping at my grocery store whenever I feel like it wins out most of the time. Still, I do enjoy visiting a farmers' market occasionally and picking up a few vegetables or fruit that are in season.
To get a chance to eat the food grown directly near the restaurant was something I could not pass up. I did not care that I'd have to be up at 5 am the following day and pack for a friend's wedding: I was packed my camera and invited my friend Daphne to join me for dinner.
I'll let the photographs speak for themselves. Please take a look at the slide show to see how amazingly beautiful the Willow Creek Farm is.
We started with a peach sangria. It was light, fruity and absolutely gorgeous: the pink you see is a raspberry puree. With glasses of sangria in hand, Daphne and I walked along a path till we reached the Willow Creek Farm. There we saw multiple varieties of tomatoes, herbs, FIGS, sunflowers and berries. I did not want to make this post five pages long, so most of the photographs are in the slide show.
Once we came back from the tour of the farm, the dinner started. First we had pickled vegetables (including rhubarb and green tomatoes) and charcuterie.
As we waited for the first course, we sipped on Rapidan River Semi-Dry Riesling from Virginia. White wine is definitely my favorite, especially when it's on a sweeter side. And how can you go wrong with a beautiful blue bottle?
We also got to try focaccia with locally grown vegetables and herbs and a salad.
What followed was Chesapeake Bay Soft-Shell Clams with herb and cheese ravioli and Blue Ridge Dairy Butter. The pasta melted in my mouth and the sweetness of butter was almost too much to handle. But I powered through ;) This was the first time I've had soft-shell clams. Unlike the soft-shell crab, which I'm not a fan of, you are not eating the shell of the clams.
Then we all met one of the stars of the night: Craig Rogers. Craig grows lamb at Border Springs Farm. The passion he has for his craft and food is unbelievable.
Roast Border Springs Lamb: leg, rack and house-made sausage with Swiss chard and pan drippings served with Fabbioli Cellars Cabernet Franc from Leesburg, VA.
People went nuts over the sausage, but my favorite was the leg of lamb. I just wish this dish came with a side of potatoes.
And then after a rain storm (see the slide show) we enjoyed Roasted Peach Semifreddo with Willow Creek Farm's honey popcorn and Hillsborough Vineyards Moonstone Late Harvest Viognier from Purcellville, VA. What a sweet way to end the evening.
Have you ever had a chance to eat a dinner out in a farm? What was your favorite aspect of the meal?