Austin Urban Gardens

Raised Bed Gardening and Eating Well in Austin, Texas

Spring Means Fabulous Outside Events in Austin! (Revised) March 25, 2014

After a long, and very cold winter in Austin, I look forward to outdoor events in the Spring.  There are many, many events, and this list is not exhaustive by any means.  I do have my favorites, all of which involve amazing food, cocktails and  support good causes. My picks also boast some of my favorite outdoor venues in the City as well.

March 29, 2014 – This weekend, there are two events that I really enjoy, this Saturday March 29th, is Farmhouse Delivery’s Fais D0-Do, Gumbo Cookoff at Rain Lily Farm.  Stroll the gorgeous grounds at Rain Lily Farm, sampling Gumbo from the varied entrants, sipping on bloody marys, listening to Zydeco music.  There are raffle prizes, too. I’m in!  $10 a ticket.  Proceeds benefit Creek People.

March 30, 2014 – this Sunday, 2nd Annual Crawfish Boil at Lenoir, benefiting Austin Food for Life, a non-profit  organization that assists Austin area food workers with health care.  This event will take place in the garden behind Lenoir.  $25 in advance, $30 at the door.

April 13, 2014East Austin Urban Farm Tour – Spend a Sunday afternoon strolling amongst the crops, visiting the chickens, donkeys and goats on four urban farms mere blocks apart. At each farm, chefs will offer tastes of their art, using farm ingredients. Local mixologists, brewers, and wine merchants will share sips. In the fields, farmers will introduce their crops, share their experiences as farmers and answer gardening questions. It will be the perfect opportunity to get your gardening questions solved, with farm tours on the hour.  Proceeds benefit Farm and Ranch Freedom Alliance.

Your $50 ticket will tell you which farm to start at, to prevent a backlog at any of the farms. No charge for children 12 & under.
Boggy Creek Farm – 3414 Lyons Road Austin, TX 78702

Food: Wink Restaurant,  Cafe Jose, Dolce Neve, Lenoir, Bufalina.  Drinks: Austin Wine Merchant, Live Oak, Weather Up

Hausbar Farm – 3300 Govalle, Austin, TX 78702

Food: Qui, Bola Pizza, Kome, Anjore Deepa, Dai Due.   Drinks Dripping Springs Vodka, Wahaca Tequila

Rain Lily Farm – 914 Shady Ln, Austin, TX 78702

Food:  Olive and June, Fabi and Rosi, Fresa’s.  (will update with full list)

Springdale Farm – 755 Springdale Rd, Austin, TX 78702

Food:  Eden East/Hillside Farmacy, Driskill Grill, Peche, Olamaie, Confituras. Drinks  Vinyards of Florence, Hops N Grain, Peche

See my recap of the 2011 East Austin Urban Farm Tour here:

April 19, 2014Austin Funky Chicken Coop Tour – Spend an afternoon on a self-guided tour of select Austin-area produce keepers to get inspiration for your own urban coop.  Proceeds benefit the Urban Poultry Association of Texas, Inc.

My recap of the 2010 Funky Chicken Coop Tour is here:

April 17, 2014Live Fire! – Austin Food and Wine Alliance 6:30 – 9:00
This year at the Salt Lick Pavilion, local and regional chefs will exhibit their culinary mastery over open flames. Stroll the beautiful grounds of the Salt Lick Pavilion, taste the chefs’ offerings, taste a variety of wines and enjoy being outside before summer moves us all back inside. $75.00

Chef lineup:

Rene Ortiz of Angry Bear, Jesse Perez of Arcade Midtown Kitchen (San Antonio), Brandon Fuller of Cafe Josie, Kendall Melton of Contigo, Jeff Martinez of El Chile Cafe y Cantina, Aaron Franklin of Franklin’s BBQ, Matt McAllister of FT33, (Dallas), Jason Dady of Jason Dady Restaurants (San Antonio), Ronnie Killen of Killen’s BBQ (Pearland), Rick Lopez of La Condesa, Monica Glenn of qui, Ben Runkle, Bryan Butler and Josh Jones of Salt & Time Butcher Shop & Salumeria, Callie Speer of Swift’s Attic, Josh Watkins of The Carillon, Timothy Rattray of The Granary (San Antonio), Scott Roberts of The Salt Lick (Driftwood), Kristine Kittrell of Weather Up, Reece Lagunas of Whole Foods Market

More about this event from their website: http://austinfoodwinealliance.org/?page_id=610
To order tickets, go here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/live-fire-2014-tickets-10930275749
My recap of the 2011 Live Fire event here:

April 30, 2014Homegrown Revival Dinner at HOPE Outdoor Gallery.  “A very special dinner on the top level of one of Austin’s most popular landmarks – The HOPE Outdooor Gallery.  The night includes a 5-7 course locally sourced dining experience with music and pairs drinks along copy of  HOPE Outdoor Gallery; Lost &  Found Vol 1 art book & collection sticker pack.”  The dinner will be prepared by Chef Sonya Cote.   This should be a fabulous evening with amazing food, drinks and company. $150.00.  For tickets click here.

May 8, 2014 – Sustainable Food Center Farm to Plate: http://www.sustainablefoodcenter.org/donate/farm-to-plate $125.00

Sip and stroll format, with lots of local chefs, at the beautiful Barr Mansion.  Proceeds benefit the Sustainable Food Center and their many fabulous programs.

 

Eden East at Springdale Farm – Farm to Restaurant June 15, 2013

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Last night, I had my second dinner at Eden East, Sonya Cote’s new al fresco restaurant, located on Springdale Farm.  The meal was, each time, outstanding and the setting, as beautiful as one might imagine, on a working East Austin farm.

Our Prix Fixe dinner, came with a complimentary cocktail, of grapefruit juice, Topo Chico, Deep Eddy Vodka, lime juice, and garnished with rosemary and a slice of shishito pepper.  It was super light and refreshing to start the evening.

IMG_1374

The first course, was Fresh Made Mozzarella with Heirloom Tomato Marmalade, Balsamic, Herbs and cherry tomatoes.

Mozzarella with Heirloom Tomatoes

Mozzarella with Heirloom Tomatoes

Next up was a savory Watermelon, and Cucumber Soup with Pickled Vegetables, and Chili oil.  I expected the soup to be sweet from the watermelon, but it was savory, with a bit of kick from the chili oil.  It was light and refreshing as well.

Watermelon Cucumber Soup

Watermelon Cucumber Soup

Next up was my favorite dish of the evening, simply titled Deviled Hen Egg with Rabbit Cioccoli, House Mustard.

Deviled Hen Egg

Deviled Hen Egg

Rabbit confit was made in to  a patty, breaded and fried, and it was topped with deviled egg yolk, and garnished with chopped egg white, fresh herbs and house made mustard.  It was amazing, and I hope to have this again some day.

The dish that followed was a Rocket Arugula Salad, with Candied Pecans, Texas Peach, and Strawberry Honey Viniagrette.  The salad was a light and refreshing and the strawberry vinaigrette provided a slightly sweet balance to the peppery arugula.

Rocket Arugula

Rocket Arugula

After the salad came a palate cleanser, Tomato Sorbet, which was melting quickly in the warm air that we just drank it out of the bowl.  It was cold and refreshing and everything a palate cleanser should be.

Tomato sorbet

Tomato sorbet

The sixth dish was a Sweet Corn Souffle with Oyster Mushcooms, and Creme Fraiche.  The soufflé was shaped as a muffin, but light as could be and delicious.

Corn Souffle

Corn Souffle

The next dish was Smoked Goat Ribs with Rye Whiskey Peach Jam, and Gaufrette Potatoes.  The Windy Hill Farm ribs were smokey and slightly sweet, and really good.

Smoked Goat Ribs

Smoked Goat Ribs

Last, but not least was an Angel Food muffin, with Lime Curd and Lime Zest.  Another light and refreshing dish to end the evening.

Dessert

Dessert

This was one of the best meals I’ve had in a while, and the setting is one of my favorite places on Earth.  The tables, made from reclaimed trees from the Bastrop fires, are beautiful; the lighting hangs from the trees, along with wind chimes that were silent last night in the still air.  The seatings are staggered, to provide continuous service throughout the evening.  The music was provided by Chris Denny, who sits backlit by the mobile kitchen, in which the chefs create this amazing food.

Music on the farm

Music on the farm

As darkness fell, the kitchen becomes one of the main illuminations on the farm, and you can watch the chefs cook and plate the food.  I poked my head in to say “thanks” and they allowed me to snap their photo.

Sonya and team

Sonya and team

Eden East is BYOB, aside from the complimentary cocktail, but glasses and ice are provided to keep your libations cool.

Ice for wine

Ice for wine

As I visited the Springdale Farm farmstand this morning, Sonya’s team was arriving to begin prepping for dinner tonight.  They picked up their order from the farmstand and walked it to their mobile kitchen, literally steps away.  As I was getting ready to leave, they were putting goat ribs on the smoker for tonight.

Goat ribs

Goat ribs

Eden East is opening tomorrow for their first Brunch service, which I believe is sold out.  They are booking in advance for dinner and brunch, so if you want to go, you need to make your reservation.  It is by reservation only, through Open Table directly, or via the restaurant’s website.

 

 

SFC Farm to Plate Tickets Now Available March 1, 2011

The Sustainable Food Center, the non-profit group that runs the Farmer’s Markets downtown, at the Triangle and at Sunset Valley,  (among other incredible programs) is hosting their Third Annual Farm to Plate Fundraiser on May 12, 2011.  This event will be held at the gorgeous Barr Mansion.  Featured Chefs this year are David Bull of Congress, Jesse Griffiths of Dai Due and James Holmes of Olivia.  Other highlights include local brews and Cocktails by Tipsy Texan.

There will also be an opportunity to bid to win a signature experience from Bola Pizza catering, wood fired artisinal pizzas for up to forty people.

This promises to be an extraordinary evening, and could not support a better cause.  I can’t wait! Tickets on sale now.

http://sustainablefoodcenter.wordpress.com/farm-to-plate/