October 2017 President’s Message
A Message from the President
Hello to all my fellow Chefs, Student Culinarians, and Food Enthusiasts! I hope the Autumn finds everyone enjoying the bountiful harvest of our local farms and markets. This past weekend, I attended the Les Amis d’Escoffier Society third annual farm to table dinner. For the past three years, this Autumn dinner is held at a different local farm featuring a menu based on locally sourced farm fresh foods. This year it was held at Rosedale Farms and Vineyard in Simsbury. The weather was absolutely perfect for the planned events which featured a tour of the farm, wild flower gardens, vineyard and topped off with a hayride around the farm with a stop at the pumpkin patch to select our own pumpkins. Unfortunately, the corn maze portion had to be cancelled due to the sighting of a black bear earlier in the day!! The fabulous menu catered by the Max Group Catering and Events, featured selections from Rosedale Farm, Hickory Hill Orchard, Penfield Farm, Starlight Garden, Beltane Farm, Mystic Cheese Company, Sub Edge Farm, Firefly Farm, seafood from Copps Island and Stonnington and breads from The Hartford Baking Company. All courses were paired with Rosedale Vineyard Wines. It was farm to table at its finest!
Thank you to Chef Jim Oswald for once again coming to our aid and hosting the September meeting at the Sheraton. We had invited everyone to attend the September meeting to brainstorm ideas for the rest of 2017 and into 2018. The Chapter is growing and we want all members to feel free to offer input into educational components and events. We have many events planned and are in need of volunteers.
In October we will be visiting UCONN’s Eco Garden. This will be on Sunday afternoon, October 15th at 1pm. With the daylight hours getting shorter, we felt a Sunday afternoon outing would be nice. It is pot-luck and we ask everyone wishing to attend to please contact Chef Jim Oswald and let him know how many people are attending and what you will be bringing for food or beverage.
Fast approaching is our November event, the 43rd Annual ACF Sanctioned Competition. It will be held on November 5th at the Sheraton Hartford South in Rocky Hill. The deadline for entering is October 16th. All information as well as the registration form is on our website. If you will not be competing, we ask you to still make plans to attend and show your support for the competitors and the CT Chefs Association. This will be our November meeting and we are asking everyone competing and attending to please bring a new unwrapped toy for our Toys for Tots® campaign. Last year we held the toy drive at our December meeting and were able to fill the back of my SUV with toys as well as present a small check donation. I delivered the toys and check to the Marine Reserve Center and they were so incredibly appreciative. The Marine on duty told me that even though there were still three weeks until Christmas, that had to stop taking requests for toys because they could not fill any more requests. You could see and hear the sadness in his eyes and voice. Our donation helped bring a few more children JOY! It was decided that this year we would collect in November in the hope that we can provide even more toys this year! Any donation, no matter how large or small, whether it be a toy or a monetary donation, is greatly appreciated.
Our December meeting will be at Lincoln Culinary in Shelton, CT on December 4. The charity we have chosen for December is Food Share®. Lincoln Culinary is hosting this event which we are calling “Lanterns of Hope”. Lincoln is also generously donating all the ingredients needed to make the gingerbread luminaries. These luminaries will be sold for $5 each with all the money going to Food Share® to help provide food to those in great need. Currently there are over 137,000 food insecure people just in the Hartford area alone. We are taking orders now so we know approximately how many luminaries to make but we will also have luminaries for sale at the event. We will then take a very short walk around the site with the lit luminaries as a show of support for those in need everywhere. It should be an amazing and heartwarming event. Volunteers will be needed to help make the luminaries as well as help on the night of the event. Look for information on our website soon.
The call went out for volunteers for several vacant as well as new positions within the chapter. I am pleased and honored to announce the following:
Ron Mehmet CEC, is now our new Certification Chair as well as the Accreditation Liaison.
Ted Redos, Program Manager, Lincoln Culinary Institute, is now our new Certification Host Site Liaison and Test Administrator.
Bill Apicerno CEC, is now our new Apprenticeship Liaison.
Catherine Liscio CC, is now the new head of the Student Culinarian Chapter.
My sincere thanks to Ron, Ted, Bill and Catherine for their continued dedication and hard work to and for the CT Chefs Association and the ACF.
I know I have said this before, but it is worth saying frequently. There continue to be those who want to attend meetings, volunteer and help out but due to work, school or life, cannot at this time volunteer. We want you to know we understand fully and remain open and welcoming to you whenever your schedule allows you to attend a meeting or volunteer for an event. You are a valued member of the Association and always will be!!!
Pay it forward – give back
BE AN INSPIRATION
Jennifer J. Tessier CEPC