by Jennifer Thomas
Outstanding in the Field, the pioneering farm-dinner series that has inspired pop-up supper clubs across North America and around the world, returns to the Dallas area on Tuesday, October 23 to set its long, white-linen table in the fields of Sloans Creek Farm in Dodd City. Dallas chefs Jeana Johnson and Colleen O’Hare of Acme F&B and Good 2 Go Taco will bring their crew out to the al fresco kitchen to prepare a multi-course meal, sourcing on-the-hoof ingredients for the menu from the fields of host farmers Nathan and Ellen Melson and neighboring farms.
“Our past events in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area have been filled with enthusiastic diners,” said OITF founding chef and artist Jim Denevan. “Here, local food means Texas food, and everybody can get behind that. Even visiting non-Texans. Sloans Creek Farm, where the Melson family tends pasture-raised cattle, sheep, goats, pigs and chickens, is the perfect spot for Chefs Jeana and Colleen to wow us with their whole-animal approach to good eating.”
Nearing the end of their cross-country travels, the Dodd City event is the 76th farm dinner on Outstanding in the Field’s 2012 North America Tour, which included an event on the rooftop of the Smithsonian in Washington DC. From the Northwest through the Midwest, down the Eastern seaboard and circling through the South back to California, the culinary caravan creates outdoor dining events at country farms and ranches, in urban gardens and sea caves, on mountaintops and sandy beaches.
Wherever the location, OITF’s mission is the same: To re-connect diners to the land and the origins of their food and introduce them to the local farmers and food artisans whose good work brings nourishment to the table. Ingredients for the meal are often sourced within inches of the table, prepared by a celebrated chef of the region. After a tour of the host site, everyone settles in: farmers, ranchers, fishermen, culinary artisans and diners serving each other at the communal table.
Now in its 13th season, OITF founder Jim Denevan did his first farm dinner in 1999 in his hometown of Santa Cruz, Calif. Since then, Outstanding in the Field has staged more than 300 farm dinners, welcoming nearly 40,000 diners to its long communal table in nine countries, all but seven U.S. states and three Canadian provinces.
Outstanding in the Field events start with a glass of wine and welcome hors d’oeuvres, followed by a tour of the host farm and a four-course meal paired with wines. Ticket price for the October 23 event is $200 per person, all-inclusive. The event starts at 2pm. For more information and to reserve a seat at the Outstanding table, visit www.outstandinginthefield.com