Monday, December 24, 2007

Slow Down Dinner at the Farm

Last night, in the silver light of the full moon, we had a lovely culinary experience at the Virgin Islands Sustainable Farm Institute. Nestled in the northwest hills of the island, the farm has 100 acres of orchards, gardens, and fields of organic produce that promote local and sustainable agriculture.

Once a month they host the general public to a 5-course dinner made with local ingredients. Last night was extra special because Chef Frank of Bacchus Restaurant fame (the best restaurant on the island), was in charge of the meal. With no set menu, giving Frank the freedom to create at will, the meal was a true gastronomic adventure.

It began with cucumber cups filled with Wahoo (local fish) ceviche, followed by tender greens in a lentil dressing. The ensuing eggplant ratatouille was the lightest I've ever tasted. The main course was a bed of risotto infused with soursop, topped with a very tender beef bourguignon, made with one of the feral cows that roam the hills of St. Croix. Yes, feral cows.

The whole affair was sweetened with a cheesecake in a gingersnap crust topped with passion fruit crème Anglaise. Throughout the meal, we sipped a German Gewürztraminer and a California Merlot, making the evening for a foodie like me, absolutely divine.

Happily, Frank very much enjoyed the experience too and is looking forward to hosting one of these Slow Down Dinners at the farm once a month in the coming year. Count me in!
ps-Thanks, Emy, for such a lovely treat!

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