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A Seat in the Barn 

Summer Farm Dinners

click to enlarge MATT LONG
  • Matt Long

It's that time of year again in the Hudson Valley, when the sun is out, everyone is outdoors, and farmers markets are in peak form. It's also the time of year when farms open up their doors, welcoming visitors in to sample their fare and be a part of the variety of collaborations and ideas for farm dinners that happen throughout the valley over the next few months. Here are some of the upcoming ones for you to check out.

Glynwood

One option is Glynwood in Cold Spring, which will be hosting their third annual Burger Night, as part of Food + Farm Day on July 14. The guest chef will be Shelley Boris of Fresh Company, who will bring their delicious, grass-fed beef burgers to the farm. While Burger Night is a ticketed event, Food + Farm Day is free. Tickets for Burger Night are $15-$175, and the event is BYOB. If you are buying a ticket to any dinner and don't feel like leaving, you can also book overnight stays at Glynwood.

And if you can't wait until July for a taste of Glynwood's special farm dinners, here's what they have in store for the next couple months:

May Farm Dinner, May 6, 6:30pm to 9:30pm
June Farm Dinner, June 16 from 6:30pm to 9:30pm  (includes an Angry Orchard Cider bar!)

Taliaferro Farms

Taliaferro Farms, a CSA, is just a five-minute drive from downtown New Paltz. Stay tuned for dates of their upcoming farm dinners. Each month, they choose a local chef who creates a five-course menu based on which vegetables are available on the farm. They source all meats, sustainably caught Atlantic seafood, and organic dairy products from the New Paltz region. The evenings begin with a glass of sparkling wine or cider and a walking tour of the farm, before guests are seated overlooking the fields and greenhouses, with the Shawangunk Ridge setting the background scenery. "The dinners facilitate transparency and honesty between the people that grow the food and those who eat it, highlighting the methods and respect that small farms and organic growers have for their land and crops. There is something quite fundamentally pure and genuine about people coming together and breaking bread and enjoying fine conversation while knowing exactly where, when and how their meal was produced," says Pete Taliaferro. The evening begins at 6:30 p.m. and runs until 9:30pm. Dinners are $75 per person or $65 per person without alcohol.

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Arrowood Farms

Located in Accord, Arrowood Farms is also offering the chance to dine on local food, in the form of a partnership with Graze Farm to Table to host their mobile kitchen. The kitchen will be open every weekend featuring Arrowood's signature brews, which you can enjoy under their outdoor pavilion. Some of the menu items include local lamb sliders with New York feta, red onion, and herbed mayo for $16 and goat cheese polenta cakes with pea tendrils, tomatoes, and portobello with romesco for $18. Throughout the summer, Arrowood Farms will host events with food and live music:

The Moon & You Concert, June 8 from 5pm to 7pm.
Fourth of July, July 4 from 1pm to 9pm
The Lone Below Concert, July 15 from 4pm to 10pm
Harvest Festival, September 8, 12pm to 10pm

Le' Express

Le' Express, the modern French American Bistro in Poughkeepsie, will also be hosting farm dinners around the valley this summer. Stay tuned for a list of their upcoming dinners.



Heather Ridge Farm

Heather Ridge Farm, located in Preston Hollow, will also host a Supper Club, featuring their five-course tasting menu, which includes farmed and foraged items. These events continue throughout the summer and fall. The menus feature Heather Ridge Farm's own meat and poultry. The menu isn't set and posted on the website until the week before, when chef Rob Handel is "certain what best ingredients are available at the farm stands and through foraging," says Carol Clement of Heather Ridge Farm. "The Supper Club is really a chance for Rob to wow our guests with dishes beyond the scope of our brunch/lunch cafe." Stay tuned for dates and times for these events. If you don't make these events their on-site cafe, Bees Knees Cafe is open regularly throughout the week.

For those looking for a more luxurious experience, the next couple may be exactly what you're looking for.

Bradley Farms

Bradley Farms in New Paltz has a dinner scheduled for August 5 featuring the Michelin-starred guest chef Saul Bolton from the Norm Restaurant at the Brooklyn Museum. Seats are $110, which includes a five course meal, with optional wine pairings. This is now Bradley Farm's eighth year of doing dinners. "The farm-to-table dinners serve many purposes. First and foremost, Ray, the farmer, was a chef for 25 years prior to farming and he has always wanted to combine both of his passions. He often taps into old chef friends to come up to the farm to cook. It is also a perfect way to showcase what he grows," says Iris Kimberg of Bradley Farms.

Other upcoming dinners at Bradley Farms include:
Friday Happy Hour with Chef Christina Ramirez, May 11
Kayak and Lunch, May 19
Caja Pig Roast with Blaine Benson, May 27
Pulled Pork n Pits, July 1
Farm Dinner with Chef Patti Jackson from Delaware and Hudson, July 15
Fall Farm Dinner with Chef Justin Bazdarich from Speedy Romeo, September 23

Ravenwood

Ravenwood, a relatively new outfit located in Kerhonkson, is hosting farm dinners this summer as part of their mission to help bring people together around the exploration of agriculture, culinary arts and the local makers movement. Their upcoming dinners are June 29 and October 12, from 6:30 to 9:30 pm and costs $185 a seat. While dinner prepared on an open fire grill, you'll have a chance to enjoy a drink and mingle with guests before the dinner starts. The dinner consists of a series of savory courses that use Ravenwood's home-grown produce as guests sit around a long table in their newly renovated 1850s barn. After dinner, guests will be served coffee, tea, and dessert and invited to stay seated or gather around a bonfire outside. Reserve your seat now for the June 29 barn dinner.

Empire Farm

Empire Farm in Copake, New York and the FarmOn! Foundation are teaming up once again to host the eighth annual HOOT! this July 13-14. Festivities kick off Friday night at the Farmstead Pizzeria, from 6 to 9pm. The following day, Saturday July 14, experience the HOOT! ITALIANO, which runs from 6 to 8pm and is a Farmers Market Cocktail Hour followed by family style dinner with 300 guests. The dinner takes place overlooking the Victory Garden at Empire Farm and features ingredients sourced from within a five-mile radius. Before dinner you can shop local at the farmers' market, which will feature live music, vendors, and a silent auction. One hundred farmers from the surrounding area will join you at a family-style dinner, so you can shake the hand that feeds you. Following the dinner, guests enjoy live music and dancing under the stars with a barn party to follow dessert. This event is a fundraiser for FarmOn! Foundation to support their youth education programming. Tickets for the dinner and cocktail party are $325, while tickets for just the cocktail party are $165. 

The summer is here and it's time to make the most of it while it lasts! So go explore the Hudson Valley, eat some good food, and connect with farmers along the way.

Pennings Farm Market
What: Taco & Trivia Night
When: Thursday evenings, 4pm to 10:30pm.
Why: Tacos and Mexican favorites are featured at the grill on Thursdays. Chef Oscar Elias' veggie, chicken, braised beef and chorizo taco platters, served with a side of rice and salsa Verde are available. Taco Happy Hour is from 7:30pm to 9pm when a la carte tacos are only $2! Enjoy live music from DJ Skyhook.

Crown Maple/Madava Farms Pancake Breakfast—stay tuned for info on a brunch buffet this summer.

Westwind Orchard
What: Pizza & Cider tastings
When: 12 pm to 6 pm every Saturday and Sunday through October.
Why: Chicco, the master pizzaiolo, has perfected Nonna's pizza dough recipe and used her secrets handed down through generations. Westwind Orchard will be using their own fresh organic toppings, such as basil, zucchini, squash blossom, tomatoes, prosciutto and more. 

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