By Katrina Fried
There's a whole new meaning to the slow-food mantra "farm to table" when the table itself is actually in the middle of the farm. That's the hyper-local culinary experience offered by Outstanding in the Field, artist and chef Jim Denevan's roving al fresco dinner party. Each unique dining event features the ingredients of local producers, prepared by a celebrated area chef in a bucolic outdoor setting. Amid the elements of nature, guests, farmers and culinary artisans converge around an epically long table to share a four-course feast with wine pairings.
Now in its 12th year, Outstanding in the Field's iconic red and white bus will be pulling into the North Bay this May and June to host a series of dinners at farms, ranches and wineries throughout Napa, Sonoma and Marin. Highlights include Chez Panisse Cafe chef Beth Wells at McEvoy Ranch in Petaluma, chef Joseph Humphrey of Cavallo Point at Devil's Gulch Ranch in Nicasio and chef Christian Caiazzo of Osteria Stellina at Barinaga Ranch in Marshall. Further North Bay events will be held at County Line Harvest in Petaluma, Tres Sabores Winery in St. Helena and Hudson Ranch in Napa—and if the sound of the surf appeals, choose one of four dinners staged in a "secret sea cove" along the Bay Area coast, featuring chefs Tom McNaughton of Flour + Water, Melissa Perello of Frances, Richard Reddington of Redd and Staffan Terje of Perbacco.
Tickets at $200-$240 (BYO plate!) go on sale Sunday, March 20. Last year, some dates sold out in less than 10 minutes. For more, see www.outstandinginthefield.com.
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