Superstar chefs turn the limelight onto Pemberton farmers

Another reason to be happy the Meager Mudslide didn’t wash Pemberton Meadows away? Slow Food Cycle rides on. And ten tickets remain for the Slow Food Cycle benefit dinner, taking place in Pemberton on Saturday 14 August.

The menu, a creative collaboration between Araxi’s Executive Chef James Walt and Grant Cousar and his team at Whistler Cooks Catering is a showcase of Pemberton valley produce, and features beef, berries, salads and vegetables from 8 different local farms, as well as organic vodka from Pemberton’s artisan distillery, Schramm Vodka.

The meal, at $125 a head, offers exceptional value with four courses each paired with BC wines, plus a reception of hors d’oevres and a mid-meal palate cleanser of Schramm Vodka raspberry granite.

But for Chef Grant Cousar, the venue is a critical part of the evening. “Just sitting up in that valley, eating dinner in the open air… I’m not going to be stealing the show. That’s really the best part for me… Invariably, these farm to fork dinners are the greatest events, and Van Loon’s farm is unmistakeably beautiful.”

The dinner is an unusual opportunity to enjoy a truly intimate meal… “Getting to sit there and eat every single course knowing that the majority of the food is coming from just a bike -ride away – not a car-trip or a jet-ride… it’s just thrilling. To know exactly where that food comes from.”

Cousar revealed a sneak peak at the menu planned for the August 14 dinner: Riverlands Farm leeks spice up a pork and goat cheese tart, Van Loon’s pickled beets match “Indian candy” salmon, Rootdown Farm’s mixed lettuces will be drizzled with Whistler Cooks’ signature oven dried cherry vinaigrette, Helmer’s potatoes and Shaw Creek Farm green beans will celebrate Wild Sockeye Salmon and spot prawns, and North Arm Farm roasted root vegetables and Across the Creek organic potatoes will complement Pemberton Meadows Beef. North Arm berries add to the finishing touch of lavender pavlova with apricot coulis and a sweet cicely garnish.

It’s a celebration of local food, and the growers who labour in fields that are vulnerable to floods, and fires and catastrophic mud-slide events, to produce it, and to keep unique varieties in circulation.

As Cousar says, “Local food is the future. It’s where we came from. And it tastes good.”

Would that every decision could be this simple. Do good. Eat well. Be loco for local.

RSVP to the Pemberton Chamber at  Attendees must be 19 years or older.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: