Sometimes you are given a gift of time. A special, perfect day that you will remember forever. I can think back to several of these days throughout my life. But they don’t usually happen when I’m working.
Last Saturday was this kind of day. I had the extreme pleasure of doing a radio story about one of the newest food ventures in town, Eat at the ARTery. Every Saturday since mid-May, Julianna Mimande and her sous-chef and friend, Sarah Patterson, have been cooking lunch at the ARtery. There are a only a couple of menu choices, plus dessert. The food is local, simple and delicious, the atmosphere is DIY, and the price is right: ten dollars a plate.
We started the day bright and early at the downtown farmers’ market. From wandering the market to prepping in the kitchen to serving the beautiful plates of food to hungry people, the whole experience was probably the most fun I’ve ever had while on the job. Not just that - some of the most fun I’ve ever had. Period. Keep in mind, this kind of story is a dream for someone like me. I get to spend the day talking to cool people about local food and yummy ingredients. What more could a budding food journalist ask for?
Julianna and Sarah welcomed me into their lives for the day and didn’t mind when I peppered them with questions. Hanging out with them in the kitchen as they chopped, talked, laughed and tasted was a ball. And the atmosphere at the ARTery was a wonderful thing. It’s not like a regular restaurant, and there was no real difference in mood between the kitchen and the dining room. Everyone was relaxed, grooving, and having a good time.
The only sad part about the day was the fact that I couldn’t eat any of the gorgeous food. Damn you, cleanse! The ham and cheese sandwich, potato salad, and especially the rhubarb crumble with Pinocchio’s ice cream looked so tempting and divine heading out the kitchen door on plate after plate.
(I took a ton of photos throughout the day but unfortunately I forgot to take them off the CBC camera today. I will post some up in the next few days so you can see for yourselves how good it looked.)
These women deserve a huge hand for what they are doing with Eat at the ARTery – providing a place for people to come and eat delicious, local food at a reasonable price.
For more information on Eat at the ARTery, you can join the facebook group and get weekly updates about the menus. Next Saturday’s lunch sounds amazing - they’re cooking a Ukrainian Perogy bowl.
For more on my day at the ARTery, you can listen to my radio piece tomorrow (Friday) on Radio Active on CBC Radio one. It will be on sometime between 3 and 6. Lots of great market and cooking sounds!