Wild Oats Chef Finalist In Food Institute Competition
Roach was named as one of five finalists in the Family Meals Category for his winning Veggie Enchilada Casserole, designed as a healthy and delicious meal that's easy to prepare. The competition takes place at the institute's 2012 convention in Dallas from April 30 to May 3. The convention brings together some 25,000 industry professionals from 90 countries.
If he wins, Roach will compete for the title of "Grand Chef" in the Championship Challenge held on the last day of the convention. He represents Wild Oats Market against well-known national and regional supermarket chains like Publix, Roche Bros., Safeway and Wegmans. More than 350 recipes were submitted for the competition from 50 retail and wholesale companies across the country.
A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, from which he received the Roth Outstanding Student Performance Award and the President's Scholarship, Roach's career has included stints in the kitchens of Wolfgang Puck, Jimmy Schmidt and Charlie Trotter. He was chef at Helen's Place for four years before joining Wild Oats in 2007. Since then, he has introduced hot-foods and salad bars, expanded its "grab n' go deli" and bakery operation, and introduced catering services.
Wild Oats Market is a member-owned, cooperative-based whole foods market specializing in local and organic products. The co-op is located at 320 Main St.
Nudel Owner Nominated for People's Best New ChefLENOX, Mass. — Once upon a time, Bjorn Somlo was a 16-year-old washing dishes at a pizza shop.
Now, the local chef and owner of Nudel Restaurant has received his second nomination in as many years as one of the top 100 chefs for The People's Best New Chef award for Food & Wine magazine. He's currently trailing in the New England region vote, which anyone can vote in until Sunday, March 11. The finalists will then enter another round of voting to compete for the title of People's Best New Chef and a spot in the July issue of Food & Wine.
Nudel Restaurant, which opened in 2009, strives to primarily include locally grown, organic and ethical ingredients in its dishes. The ever-changing menu currently includes four different pasta dishes and a variety of small and large plates.
The restaurant is located on 37 Church St. and is open for dinner from Tuesday to Sunday between 5:30 and 9:30 p.m.
Get to Know Your Farmer at Local Food ExpoAs spring approaches local farmers are planning their crops and deciding what food to grow for our communities. On Thursday, Feb. 16, from 5-7 p.m. at 107 Main St., North Adams, members of the community are invited to meet many of our local farmers from cheese makers and beekeepers to Community Supported Agriculture and farmers market growers.
This is the annual "Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food" event.
Local farming is seeing a come back in our region from people keeping chickens in their back yards to farmers growing produce that's sold in local markets and restaurants. It's the connection to the land, and the community, that helps our local agricultural economy grow. Our local farms also do more than just sell their bounty. Farms work with the local food projects to make sure that what isn't sold does not go to waste but back into our community to feed people who might not otherwise have access to fresh, local produce.
As a core group member of Hoosac Harvest, I'm looking forward to this event that will include Berkshire Farm Apiary, Wildstone Farm, Cricket Creek Farm, Wild Oats Market, Many Forks Farm, Country Dream Farm, Berkshire Grown, Berkshire Food Project, North Adams Farmers Market and more.
Hoosac Harvest will also be present and is looking for community members to help fulfill its mission of a vibrant food system in which all members of the northern Berkshire community participate and have access to locally grown, healthy, sustainably-produced food. Hoosac Harvest currently raises funds to subsidize 20% of the CSA shares at Square Roots Farm, enabling low-income community members to participate fully. We need people power to do more including growing a row in a backyard garden for the local food pantry to a cadre of volunteers to help with gathering unharvested produce from local farms to serving on the core group.
Joins us on Thursday for this free event and meet the farmers, mingle with friends and celebrate the bounty of the Northern Berkshires.
Participating farmers include Wildstone Farm, Square Roots Farm, Cricket Creek Farm, and Country Dream Farm. Also participating are beekeeper, Tony Pisano, Sunshine Bagels, Wild Oats Market, North Adams Farmers Market, Berkshire Grown, the Berkshire Food Project, and more.
Eating For A Cause, Bollywood-Tex Style
Imagine there was a new place opening up in March. It would serve Bollywood-Tex cuisine. Would you go?
What if it was only open for one night?
What if its chef was the Red Lion's Brian Alberg?
Most people are a little taken aback by the prospect of Indian/Texan culture coming together but Stockbridge's IS183 Art School for the Berkshires plans to jam the two into one night full of color, music, art and yes, food.
"Who doesn't love a barbecue?" says Alberg. He will be working with a diverse range of chefs in the Berkshires to bring the culinary aspect of the event together. For his part, the Red Lion is donating a pig and two lambs to be spit roasted whole. Alberg intends to serve the pig three ways, the lamb is still up in the air (so to speak.)
The event takes place on March 31. Between now and then, we'll visit the six different chefs who make up Alberg's team and get their take on cooking for a cause and unlikely combinations.
Here's are a few menu items so far:
Alberg's Whole Hog, 3 Ways
Grilled Curried Eggplants
Carmelized Paneer Mushroom Tarts
Crisp Vegetable Pickles in a ginger and mustard seed brine
Ghandi's Grit - Skillet Corn Bread.
And that's just a sketch.
The Buckaroo Bollywood Ball starts at 6 p.m. on March 31, at Interlaken (the former Desisto School)
Tickets for the dinner and dance start at $150 per person.
Wild Oats Names New General Manager
Durfee is stepping into the shoes of Michael Faber, who left last year to manage a co-op in Keene, N.H. He will oversee finance, marketing and operations for Wild Oats Market, which has nearly 40 employees and sales of approximately $3.6 million last fiscal year.
A Berkshires native, Durfee is committed to local food production, sustainable living, and green business practices. He has promoted municipal composting, is very involved in his community through coaching and other volunteer activities, and has extensive experience working on non-profit boards and organizing community events.
"I was attracted to Wild Oats because of my desire to work in a values-driven and socially responsible organization," he said. "I'm looking forward to getting to know the Wild Oats community and working with the staff to build on the successes of the past few years."
Durfee, who currently resides in Shaftsbury, Vt., is a graduate of Williams College and holds a master's in business administration from Cornell University.
He was a senior forecasting analyst for the Vermont Country Store in Manchester, responsible for corporate sales budgeting and forecasting and oversight of the customer database. He also was director of marketing and communication for the Red Lion Inn in Stockbridge and its sister inn, Porches Inn in North Adams, and held management positions with Rodale Inc. in Emmaus, Pa., and Sanyo Electric Co. in Kobe, Japan.
"David's background in business, finance and marketing is a valuable addition to the expertise of the co-op's current strong management team," said Wild Oats board President Alison Kolesar. "We're excited to have him at the helm of our co-op and look forward to continued growth under his leadership."
Wild Oats Market is a member-owned, cooperative-based whole foods market specializing in local and organic products.