When Lisa Marvier followed her heart and opened on her family's Indian Valley property in Novato last April, she had no idea where the business might take her. A powerhouse of energy and entrepreneurial spirit, Lisa teamed up with one of my favorite local chefs, Suzanne Griffin of Cooking By The Bay and combine their considerable talents to bring Farm Girl To Table dinners to local patrons.
Last Saturday, 18 lucky foodies gathered in the lush cottage gardens at Farm Girl Nursery, eager to be the first to try Chef Griffin's five-course seasonal menu featuring produce freshly harvested just hours before from Marvier's edible nursery plot.
Guests eased into the evening, seated around a long wooden farm table set with china, glistening stemware, and cascading bouquets of fresh flowers on the country estate's veranda-style porch. They sipped Sterling chardonnay, chatting convivially while blissfully enjoying the warm summer dusk as music from Sinatra and Van Morrison played softly in the background.
They would not be disappointed. Working her unique gift of kitchen magic, Chef Griffin transformed the garden's raw bounty into a symphony for the palate as she rolled out each course: a stacked Heirloom Tomato Caprese Salad with Balsamic Drizzle, followed by Farm Girl Green Gazpacho, and Creamy Farro Risotto with Summer Vegetables. Local wines from Cline and Azzaro enhanced each dish.
The arrival of the main course, Herb and Chevre Stuffed Organic Chicken Breasts with Heirloom Tomato Concasse over Braised Greens with Pine Nuts and Garlic, was an epiphany of flavors that garnered raves from guests. As light faded from the sky, its glow replaced by tiny twinkle lights entwined in the surrounding foliage, dessert was served: Fresh Berry Tarts in Date-Nut Crusts, a sublime finale to the perfect dinner.
Guests lingered at the table, satiated with good food and lively conversation. They had bonded over their shared experience, leaving with new friends and the memory of an evening well spent.
Don't miss the next Farm Girl To Table dinner slated for Saturday, Sept. 22. Marvier and Griffin will continue their winning collaboration, bringing lucky guests a memorable five-course feast freshly harvested from Farm Girl's garden. Word is spreading fast and spots are filling quickly. Space is limited, so reserve yours today by calling 415-730-6917. Cost is $90/person or $175/couple. Follow Farm Girl on Facebook.