Art & Artisans at Barndiva with Slow Food Healdsburg

Event report: July 17, 2004, 6-11pm

This event was held at restaurant/bar, Barndiva, in Healdsburg. It is a large red barn- like building across and down the street from Oakville Grocery.

This event was conceived as a meeting of Art and Artisans of their chosen medium be it food, painting, sculpture, ceramics, photography or marriage of art and food like Michael Recchuiti’s Chocolate Painting. All the art works on show were auctioned off during the evening. Each one having been paired with a theme of food featured in the moveable feast. Two art pieces for each category: The food categories: Paul Bertolli’s Salumi, California Mission Olives crushed with Organic Meyer Lemons, Special Select Dry Monterey Jack, Wildflower Honey, Wood Fired Meyer Lemon & Rosemary Bread, Fresh Peaches, Homemade Blenheim Apricot Preserves, 70% Cacao Bittersweet Dark Chocolate, Guadagni Red Your Father’s Jug.

Waiters strolled outside and in with trays of appetizers from Vella Jack Biscuits to Lettuce leaves with nasturtiums and Meyer Lemon Olive oil, to lamb. To Screaming Mimi’s peach sorbet. The hit for us was Paul Bertolli’s charcuterie. The Mortadella with pistachios and his splendid salami were enough to convert us to cold-cut fans. The event though was grueling in timing.

The wines – Preston Rose and Jug Red were quaffable (to be kind - Jack) but with the lag in food arrival and lack of entertainment – there were only 18 pieces of art to gaze upon, we were consuming far too much alcohol of a sub-par form.

We bailed! Off we went to Manzanita for a quick bar meal with some tasty Riojas. I had the Corn Chowder and the Saltimboca. Jack had the melon with sorbet and the lamb. The ambrosia melon was wonderful of the three. The chowder was without much character. The corn not at it’s prime before being pureed. The Saltimboca was tasty but not brilliant. The Lamb solidly good but not awesome. But after a nice meal including a good amount of water and bread we returned to Barndiva in time for most of the auction. Prices were in keeping with what’s expected at a charity auction at a charity function. After a few items and a spoonful of sorbet we bailed again and headed home with our picnic lunch ingredients from Oakville Grocery for the next day.


1st Course: Sally Schmidt’s Dough God Biscuits with Vella Aged Asiago

2nd Course: Paul Bertolli’s Aged Handcrafted Charcuterie

3rd Course: Ed Miller’s Baby Gems, Dressed in O Olive Oil’s California Mission Olives Crushed with Organic Meyer Lemons

4th Course: LG Vella’s Special Select Dry Monterey Jack Cheese served with Dry Creek Peaches

5th Course: Baby Yellow Fin potatoes baked and stuffed with Chive flowers, Bellwether Crème Fraiche, Flakes of Maldon Sea Salt

6th Course: Spit Roasted CK Lamb glazed with Labesque Wildflower Honey, served on slices of Della Fattoria Rosemary Meyer Lemon Bread with Barndiva Aioli

7th Course: A Spoonful of Screaming Mimi’s Peach Sorbet with fruit grown by Dry Creek Peach & Produce

8th Course: Craig Strattman’s Olive Oil Cakes with a dollop of Elissa Rubin-Mahon’s Blenheim Apricot Preserves

9th Course: Shaved Scharffen Berger Handcrafted Chocolate, drizzled with the Apple Farm’s Apple Balsamic Vinegar and a dusting of Toasted black pepper. Served with berries.

10th Course: New Crop Coffee Tastings from Kenya, Nicaragua, and the Galapagos Islands presented by Flying Goat Coffee.

Wine Selections:
The first two courses were accompanied by Preston of Dry Creek’s 2003 Vin Gris and, Preston Guadagni Red - Your Grandfather’s Jug was poured throughout the evening.

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