While investigating the farmers, markets, and retailers that are driving the farm-to-table movement in Northwest Florida, VIE foraged for some of the freshest and, arguably, the healthiest fruits of the land—and, of course, the sea. VIE was delighted to share a taste of what was gathered from Apalachicola oyster farmers, Dragonfly Fields, Mac Farms, Twin Oaks Farm, and For the Health of It for its Sea + Farm + Table dinner party with Chef Phil McDonald at Arnett’s Gulfside Stables in Santa Rosa Beach, Florida.
Guests mingled over French 75 cocktails and hors d’oeuvres—Apalachicola oysters, sweet potato purée on toast, and Alligator Point clams—until time for the main event. Starting off the meal: a salad of fresh arugula from nearby Dragonfly Fields topped with fried carrots, spicy pecans, Belle Chevre goat cheese, and country sorghum vinaigrette, all paired with a crisp Martinelli Road Chardonnay donated by Krutz Family Cellars. The main course featured delectable wood-grilled red snapper, buttermilk cornbread muffins, and a succotash of Dragonfly Fields sweet potatoes, pink-eyed peas, sweet peppers, broccoli, spinach, Allan Benton’s bacon, citrus butter, and chervil. The wines served were Akins Family Vineyard Pinot Noir and Stagecoach Vineyard Syrah. After such a healthy meal, guests didn’t have to feel guilty about eating dessert—which was good, because McDonald prepared a mouthwatering final course of homemade buttermilk biscuits topped with Plant City strawberries, vanilla cream, and toasted pecans. Yum!
CMA took on the collateral design of the event posters and menu, while also organizing details of the event through press releases, editorials, hiring of photographers, producing behind-the-scenes video, and teaming up with local businesses to pull off a truly healthy and bountiful dinner.
Farm to Table
The rustic antique tables were lined with simple yet elegant settings as the band set up nearby. Dread Clampitt, local musical talent best known for performing at the famous funky hot spot the Red Bar, tuned up the guitars for an evening of fun and food. The event was also featured on VIE magazine’s 2013 March/April Culinary & Couture Issue cover, with inspiration drawn from several places: the classic equestrian fashions by designers such as Ralph Lauren and Tory Burch, the rustic charm of the stables and surrounding grounds, and the camaraderie that blooms from a group of people while breaking bread together. Renowned fashion photographer Carlo Pieroni captured the cover shoot and the events of the evening.
Photos from the event.