The omnivore's solution.
—by Jane Laird
It's been great to watch the fast growing locavore movement blossom here on the Wasatch Front. It has grown so much, in fact, that it's getting hard to keep tabs on all the new restaurants, stores and organizations. By contrast, I remember the bleak old days—I mean like seven or eight years ago—when people thought a Rhode Island Red was some kind of wine imported from New England.
Meet some tea purists, M.C. (Michael) Rivetti and Jason Woodland —CEO/president and vice president respectively of The Emperor's Tea. This Salt Lake-based company's mission is to provide the highest quality, freshest, most flavorful tea leaves possible as the popularity of premium tea and tea-like beverages continue to rise. In 2011, Americans imbibed over 65 billion servings of tea. This is still well behind U.S. coffee consumption, with 150 million daily sonsumers; but tea is on the rise.
Each month, CATALYST brings our readers tales of fascinating local endeavors—entrepreneurs launching new restaurants or retail businesses, gardeners digging, composting and planting their way to greener communities, or locals organizing to improve the vitality of the city we share—but this month, we're going to take you on a tour of a local business bringing all of these ideas together in the vision of one mover and shaker who understands that, if you want the fruit, sometimes you just have to climb out on a limb. For Kathie Chadbourne, proprietor of the Avenues Bistro on 3rd, out on a limb is par for the course.
You stroll through the sliding glass doors and fumble for the grocery list at the bottom of your reusable bag. Immediately, you have the sense that something's different in this store. Friends told you that would be the case. You can't put a finger on it, but, yeah, something is definitely different here.
Beyond Boston baked beans or California-style pizza are foods through which we can actually reach a deeper communion with place. Cheese is one of these foods, its alchemy dependent on the subtle unseen of a place, as the microorganisms that permeate the environment work away to alter the raw material into the final product.
Spring’s arrival has brought big changes and weighty revelations to our backyard poultry ranch, not least of which is the snow melting. Bigger yet, though is this news: our goose is laying! I say “goose,” because, contrary to what our previous beliefs of the gender distribution of our American buff goose flock – that is, two geese, one gander – it’s recently been revealed to us that we in fact have two ganders and one goose. That’s been a tough pill to swallow.
Easter is on Sunday, March 31 this year. If your celebration of physical and spiritual renewal features dyed eggs, a roast ham or lamb, consider purchasing directly from one of Utah's farmers. However, many of these producers run small-scale, family-run operations, so get in touch with them early in the month to reserve your Easter dinner. (If your Easter celebration includes some of the more esoteric cultural trappings—willow switches and mystery novels, anyone?—you're on your own.)
Utah is a treasure chest for the locavore, abundant with farmer’s markets and CSAs offering up the emerald of dew-glistened spinach and lettuce, the rich ruby of beets and the dull gold of potatoes and corn. But busy schedules don’t always allow time for a treasure hunt—whether it involves squeezing in an extra trip to the farmer’s market (in season) or scrambling for a decent recipe that can incorporate unfamiliar or surprise CSA fare.
Perhaps you've seen them: Lone, bundled-up figures, miniature fishing rods in hand, they stand out on the stark white fields of lakes frozen over and glazed with snow. Those hearty people know that beneath a cold layer of ice swim hungry fish, lots of them, ripe for the picking.