January 11, 2010 Greenmarket and NOFA-NY's Organic Wheat Project held a Local Grain Discussion and Tasting at the French Culinary Institute. Grain researchers, local growers and processors came together with distillers, brewers and many of the city's top bakers and chefs, to discuss the current state of grain production, quality and processing in our region, and wrestle with the issues and barriers around developing a regional grain system.
Orwasher's, Sullivan Street Bakery, FCI, City Bakery, I Trulli and Hot Bread Kitchen made bread, pastry, pasta and tortillas from locally grown heritage grain, which participants tasted and gave feedback.
The gathering hasalready led to genuine committments from bakers and millers and is doing much to advance the reality that "locally grown" bread and other grain-based products can one day flourish again in the region. Check out photos from the event below.
This will always stand as one of a very few events in my professional life where I was witness to the launch of a well-defined and cohesive future.
The tasting was a smash success, and its results should push us dramatically forward on integrating locally grown grains into New York City and other regional markets.
You have really opened all kinds of frontiers for wheat in the northeast.