Pensacola, Florida
Monday October 20th 2014

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Staff Pick: Slow Food Picks Up Steam

By Jessica Forbes

“A Community Cooks” is the launch of the Gulf Coast chapter of Slow Food USA, an organization whose byline is “Supporting Good, Clean, and Fair Food.”

Slow Food is a global movement with members in over 150 countries that promote ecologically- and socially-conscious food production. “Local, seasonal, and sustainable” sums up the focus of Slow Food.

Sandy Veilleux of Flora Bama Farms calls the Slow Food Gulf Coast launch event an “Eat and Greet,” a way for people “to get to know the faces of those taking on using fresh food.” Those faces belong to numerous local farmers, food artisans, retailers, chefs, and restaurateurs who are banding together under Slow Food Gulf Coast to promote a regional food economy.

Seven local chefs will participate in the tasting event, preparing small plates using locally grown produce and locally produced ingredients, an increasingly common occurrence across Pensacola’s culinary landscape. Veilleux states that numerous local chefs are helping to grow farmers’ business by purchasing and using the food they grow in their restaurants.

“People are grouping together to raise awareness of eating local,” said Veilleux, whose farm provides produce and products to multiple local restaurants, including those of all of the event’s participating chefs. “We all have a similar goal.”

The fundraiser will be held at The Palafox House, the newest venue for event partner the Great Southern Restaurant Group (GSRG). Atlas Oyster House, the Fish House and Jackson’s are all part of the GSRG family, and chefs from GSRG will participate in the Slow Food event. Chefs from The Magnolia, Carmen’s, Pensacola Country Club, R&R Fine Catering and Nancy’s Haute Affairs will also be part of the action.

“We’ve reached out to so many people who’ve embraced slow food in their restaurants and lives,” said Veilleux, who is enthusiastic about the opportunity to connect the public with the various players working to promote a truly local, sustainable food culture. “Foodies bring what we’re doing to the next level.”

A COMMUNITY COOKS
WHAT: Slow Food Gulf Coast Chapter Launch Event
WHEN: 2-4 p.m. Sunday, June 30
WHERE: The Palafox House, 196 N. Palafox St.
COST: $45
DETAILS: facebook.com/SlowFoodGulfCoast