A slightly bitter chill and ominous sky lurked over the Rose Kennedy Greenway on Sunday, October 7, 2012, for the 3rd Annual Boston Local Food Festival; but that didn’t deter the droves of food enthusiasts, myself included, from attending. With over 100 vendors, food demonstrations and food samples the festival, presented by Sustainable Business Network of Massachusetts, had something new at every turn. From booths about sustainable gardening practices to developments in local fishing and every variety of food possible there was only so much a sole individual could cover. As promised in our preview post, here is a review with my top 4 highlights of the day.
A certified Green restaurant based out of Brookline, Massachusetts, The Fireplace was offering two varieties of fried pies as a taste of what they had to offer. Having to choose between an herbed goat cheese, roasted beet and fennel fried pie and an apple blackberry fried pie was not an easy decision, but seeing plenty of other dessert and dessert-esque booths, I made the decision to go with the former. Cooked to a golden crunch, the pie was a perfect blend of goat cheese and beet, so much so, that it was hard to distinguish the individual flavors because they blended so well together. The outer shell was crisp and melted in your mouth, which rounded everything out nicely.
Sofra Bakery and Café
Located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Sofra Bakery offers a variety of Eastern Mediterranean dishes, but with a modern twist. Their presence at the food festival consisted of specialized baked treats, such as Pumpkin Jam Bread, Shanklish Fatayer, and an Apple Butter Biscuit. Although it is pumpkin season, I’m a huge pushover for biscuits so the choice for me was obvious. Baked to perfection, the apple butter biscuit wasn’t shy about revealing its apple flavor which was nice and subtle, not overwhelming. Moreover, it held together quite well after the first bite, unlike some biscuits I have come across, that have left me with only a fraction after the floor received the largest portion.
Having just relocated to the city, I was very excited to hear about a company that specializes in residential kitchen scrap pickup. The aim of Bootstrap Compost is simple: divert hundreds of pounds of food scraps from the landfill, turn it all into compost and use it in local gardens within the city. In return, they give their customers useable compost from the scraps they’ve contributed so it can also be used at home. The cost for their weekly service starts at $8 and varies from plan to plan. Their overall goal is to encourage sustainability and to benefit the local community.
Much like Bootstrap Compost, Boston Organics is in the business of providing a door-to-door service, but rather than taking away, they bring a box full of fresh fruits and vegetables right to your door. It’s easy, all you have to do is choose the box type and size, starting at $24, set the preferences of what fruits & vegetables you want and don’t want, and, if so desired, you can add other items such as eggs, cheese, etc. What’s so great about this? Well, for starters every product is 100% organic, it’s convenient, and as if that wasn’t enough, it gives individuals the chance to support local and organic farms.
Overall, the festival was a great experience and I definitely would encourage anyone to attend next year. There’s a lot to do, so much that I can’t mention it all here, like activities for the kids, cook-offs, etc. I would, however, like to mention the only brightness that was shown that day did not come from the sky, but from all the faces smiling with joy as people moved from booth to booth.