Despite being a UBC student for eight years consecutively, the existence of the UBC Farm escaped me until yesterday at the 13th Annual Feast of Fields event. Located in the south campus region, this 24 hectare farm is the last working farm within the city of Vancouver. With a glorious blue sky above and warm grassy earth underfoot, this year's Feast of Fields was, once again, a perfect excuse to eat for a good cause.
Restaurants, wineries, local farm producers, and community groups were all represented and provided food for thought and consumption. Many chefs offered BC wild salmon and tomatoes were especially abundant on the menus. Interestingly, no plates were on sale this year and instead, food items were designed either as finger food or presented on creative natural platters like leaves or bark. My favourites were grilled Poplar Grove tiger blue cheese & turkish fig walnut wine paninis from Vista D'Oro Farms and barbequed organic chicken wings with Chef Ann's tequila-lime sauce. Refreshing vanilla rooibos iced tea from T Tearoom and Happy Planet organic pomegranate-blueberry juice provided much needed hydration for the afternoon. We nibbled and sipped for almost three hours before finding some shade to digest and relax under.
The food for thought was provided by numerous organizations which support local sustainable food systems like FarmFolk/CityFolk and Green Table Network. Eating local or choosing restaurants which use locally produced ingredients is not always feasible (no local mangosteens or rice yet) but everybody needs to start somewhere!