Everything You Need to Know About This Year’s Chefs For Farmers Festival

Chefs For Farmers, the culinary escapade where farmers and chefs come together to host a top-notch food and wine festival, returns to Dallas this November for its ninth year.

The festival will take place from Nov. 1-3 and tickets are now on sale and available by clicking here. (Scroll down to the end of the post to see a full lineup).

The festival started years ago when Park Cities local Iris McCallister set out to create a long-table dinner where local chefs and farmers would have a chance to network. She never imagined it would grow into anything more. (Check out this Q&A with Iris McCallister from last year)

However, the intimate, farm-to-table dinner has grown into a well-received three-day festival celebrating mutual appreciation for locally grown food. While farm-fresh food is in high demand, building professional relationships can be challenging for farmers who live outside of the city.

This festival gives farmers the opportunity to tell their stories and create partnerships with chefs in a relaxed and fun setting.

Participating Texas farms at this year’s event include Cartermere Farms, Chubby Dog Farm, Comeback Creek Farm, Eden’s Garden CSA Farm, Profound Microfarms, Rae Lili Farm, Reeves Family Farm, Rehoboth Ranch, South Texas Heritage Pork, Sun E Farms, Texas Fungus, and Tree Folk Farm.

The above farms are known for their quality products and desire to forge sustainable relationships with chefs at the forefront of the locavore movement.

Here’s how it works: Before the festival, chefs and farmers are carefully paired to create unique dishes and are stationed together under the tent to serve festival-goers. Pairing is a top focus for the festival planners, aiming to introduce chefs and farmers who haven’t worked together before and have expressed interest in collaborating.

  • Nick Walker of The Virgin Hotel Dallas will work with Tim Kerkman of Sun E Farms
  • Abraham Salum of Salum Restaurant will work alongside Jordan Jent of Texas Fungus
  • Suki Otsuki of Mudhen will team up with John and Aliza Kilburn of Comeback Creek Farm.

A Bar N Ranch, Chefs’ Produce and Hill Country Dairies provide donated products to chefs.

Kelley Escobedo of South Texas Heritage Pork Farm and Jeffrey Bednar of Profound Microfarms are two recurring farmers who have grown their business out of relationships established at Chefs For Farmers.

“Talking directly with chefs about our farm makes our story more personal and the likelihood of chefs wanting to work together is much greater,” says Escobedo. “We want chefs to know we put two and a half years of pasture and custom feed in our animals to elevate our product. We aren’t just another source of pork.”

Other farmers agree the personal connections they make during the festival are strong and significant.

“The first year we attended Chefs For Farmers we had seven restaurant customers. We left the festival with over 20,” says Bednar. “Chefs For Farmers has dramatically helped build our business all while having a great time with talented people.”

EVENT LINEUP

While the Uchiba Classic on Nov. 1 is already sold out, here is a list of other available events during the festival.

Southern Bourbon Supper with Scott Gottlich, John Tesar and Gerald Sombright
Where: 18th & Vine, 4100 Maple Ave, Dallas, TX 75219
When: 7-10 p.m. Friday, Nov. 1
Tickets: $150.00

About: Join Chefs For Farmers for a swanky bourbon supper from top-notch chefs Scott Gottlich, John Tesar and Gerald Sombright. This Southern-style dinner will be nothing short of festive and flavorful- including a bourbon cocktail reception, live music, a cigar roller, and comfort food classics. This all-star chef lineup will each prepare their signature southern dishes paired up with various wine, beer, and spirits. From burnt ends to biscuits, this is a night you won’t want to miss!

Farm Tour with the Seed Project Foundation
Where: Meet at NorthPark Center
When: 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Nov. 2
Tickets: $125.00

About: Enjoy a tour of three North Texas farms with a small course and an adult beverage at each stop. Get ready for a fun-filled day learning how local farmers and ranchers keep us fed while enjoying dishes from three of the area’s best chefs. Participating farms include Profound Microfarms, McKinney Roots and Cartermere Farms. Chefs include Julio Ortiz, Andrea Shackelford, and Junior Borges. For more details on the Seed Project Foundation and transportation visit https://chefsforfarmers.com/2019events/farm-tour/

Street Food Night Market presented by Audi
Where: Entrance at Victory Park Lane & High Market Street
When: 6:30 to 10 p.m. (6:30-7 p.m. VIP) Saturday, Nov. 2
Tickets: VIP $95, GA $75
About: Take your taste buds on a journey around the world at our Street Food Night Market presented by Audi. As the sun goes down Victory Park will transform into an international food scene where guests can sample bites from across the globe, sip on delicious cocktails, and enjoy DJ Yuna spinning the night away. From sushi to tacos to crêpes, Dallas is going global during this vibrant, international night affair. Come out for an exciting night highlighting Dallas’ authentic food scene!

The Main Event
Where: Dallas Heritage Village
When: 2 to 6 p.m. (2-2:30 p.m. VIP) Sunday, Nov. 3
Tickets: VIP $165, GA $99
About: This historic site will be a backdrop for 50 of the top Dallas chefs and restaurants, over 40 wineries & distilleries and more than 8 breweries for tastings. We are kicking it up a notch this year with several new, mouth-watering experiences including the History of the Margarita with Dallas Historical Society, a “grown-up” tailgate party presented by Ben E. Keith, a decadent rosé soiree hosted by Celebrity Cruises, an Audi Biergarten and so much more.

Bianca R. Montes

Bianca Montes is an award-winning journalist and former Managing Editor of Park Cities People. She currently serves as a Senior Editor with D Magazine's D CEO publication. You can reach her by email at [email protected] or follow her on Instagram @Bianca_TBD. For the latest news, click here to sign up for our newsletter.

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