Virginia Farmland Solstice Supper

Saturday morning I awoke thinking it must still be night given how little light was coming in through the blinds. No, just yet another rainy morning. My heart sank fearing that our “fork to farm” summer solstice dinner, to be cooked by Vermilion‘s Chef Tony Chittum in the fields of our CSA farm, Potomac Vegetable Farm in Purcellville, would be canceled. Fast forward eight hours — after a damp trip to the farmers market where the farmers were practically giving food away in “rainy day sales” for the dedicated few who braved the storms — and here is the vista that awaited as we strolled from the reception at neighboring Moutoux Orchard to the dinner site.

walking to potomac vegetable farm

We began the evening sipping peach-infused sparkling voignier in the peach orchards, before moving on to a surprisingly intimate feast for 100+ fellow diners, ingredients provided by six Virginia farms and Horton Vineyards, and prepared by Chef Chittum and his crew over a grill and makeshift kitchen in the middle of the field.

virginia farmland solstice supper

The additional farms — Greenstone Fields, Tree and Leaf Farm, Wheatland Vegetable Farms, and New Frontier Bison. An appetizer paired sweet beets with Alberene Ash goat cheese; the salad featured “this morning’s deviled eggs”; heirloom beets accompanied sweet Virginia ham-wrapped scallops and magnificent crab cakes; a mixed grill of beef, rabbit terrine and bison was served family-style with a sheep’s milk yogurt dressed potato salad; and luscious Caromont Farm chevre cheesecake, spiced with strawberry black pepper preserves, and Virginia peanut cookies swept us away at the conclusion of the meal, while fireflies punctuated the fields and the sun settled behind the Blue Ridge Mountains. A truly magical evening!

(full photoset here)

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12 Responses to “Virginia Farmland Solstice Supper”

  1. Sylvie, Rappahannock Cook & Kitchen Gardener

    Colleen: how about that?
    Two glorious Summer Solstice Dinner in Northern Virginia. One in a peach orchard, the other in a pasture facing the Blue Ridge Mountain; both with incredible chefs and both wildly successful. Glorious pictures, thanks for sharing! See mine on the other summer solstice farm dinner here:

    I love that this one was truly en-plein air. But then you had a rain date and we did not (we had a tent – and an antique restored barn as back up). The menu is superb!!!! I bet your were able to enjoy the food more than I, though. As one of the organizers, there wasn’t much time to do that.

    Looks like you has a grand time!

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  3. Meaghin

    Wonderful recap! You really captured how wonderful the evening was :)

  4. Tricia

    Mmmmm, would have been there but for a wedding we were committed to that night. Great to see photos of everything we missed … Hopefully next time! We are fellow PVF “farmsharers.” (Found your blog through Summer Sky–Learning As I Go.)

  5. Shaw Girl

    I had no idea you were there! I would have loved to have met you! It was a wonderfully beautiful supper!

  6. Food Scribe

    Ever since I was a girl scout, I thought food made and eaten outside just tastes better…

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  8. Joost Hoogstrate

    What better way to have a solstice dinner than to gather together with friends and family in the middle of a field. Sounds great! You must have had a great time. I guess city dwellers would never get a chance to soak up nature as people in the countryside do. Actually my site reveals exactly that true. Of course everyone has their own reasons for staying where they are. Each misses something that the other enjoys.

    Have a great time!
    Joost Hoogstrate

  9. victorian inn bed and breakfast

    It really remembers us the beautiful and peaceful
    village life pleasures we miss in the hustling bustling busy city life .The moments spent in spare time with family and friends are really a treasure one never forgets.Good properly cooked fresh delicious food eating in an open air atmosphere. One need sometime for himself to have a party like this. Nice article and have fun again next time.

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