Eat Drink Local Farm Field Trip: Stone Barns Harvest Fest

One of Stone Barns' friendly inhabitants.

Eat Drink Local week is about savoring the local harvest and meeting the people who feed us.  In that spirit our Challenge specifically exhorts readers to visit a farm, and you’d be hard pressed to find a more visitor-friendly experience than the Stone Barns Center for Food & Agriculture’s annual Harvest Fest on Saturday, October 2nd up in Westchester. In fact, Michelle Obama, the farmer-friendly first-lady, is making a visit there on this very day.

No wonder: The not-for-profit education center is a wonderland — home to a working farm and open to all visitors (not just those requiring Secret Service escorts) year-round to walk the fields and pastures and participate in programs on everything from honey to compost. Much of what they grow makes its way into the magical hands of Dan Barber and is then served at his Blue Hill restaurant, the Center’s on-site partner, which will convert anyone to Pollanism. But while Stone Barns puts on a great show year-round, they go whole hog—literally—at their annual Fest.

On Oct 2nd from 10 to 3 the gorgeous grounds are jam-packed with decidedly edible activities to delight country mice and city slickers alike: workshops on food and farming, hayrides that you can pretend are for the kids, live music, farm Olympics, even a seasonal pie bakeoff judged by Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs of Food52. (Tickets are $30, and it’s an easy $10 cab ride or bike ride from the Tarrytown Metro-North station.) Oh and come hungry. The on-site farmers market is expanded for the day to include city-savvy offerings from Bark Hot Dogs, Murray’s Cheese, Mast Brothers Chocolate, Van Leeuween Ice Cream and Balthazar Bakery.

Best of all, one of the farm’s own Berkshire pigs is roasted to perfection on a spit; wash it down with beer infused with the farm’s own hops.

Betsy Bradley

Elizabeth L. Bradley writes about New York City history and culture. She hopes to find Tiffany blue dragees in her Christmas stocking this year.

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