FEAST! Local Foods SCOOP: November 2018

The Scoop - masthead

Got Local? | Eateries | Fresh & Tasty | Contest Fun! | Who's Fueling FEAST!?


It's the November issue of The Scoop!
We hope you enjoy this special edition, chock full of special goings-on to coincide with our big event December 1st (and Nov 30 for industry insiders).

3 important takeaways:
  1. FEAST! should be on your calendar. Dec.1, 10am-4pm. Do it now.
  2. FEAST! Restaurant Week is Nov. 26-Dec. 1. (Pssst! Perfect for a date night!)
  3. The premiere issue of the FEAST! Local Foods Magazine hits stands Monday, Nov. 19 all around Rochester and beyond. If you can't find a copy in your co-op or grocery store, keep looking! (scroll down for a sneak peek!) 
—Brett Olson, Creative Director,
Renewing the Countryside


Got Local?

Grandma's Gourmets

Kim Olson’s money is in jars—literally. Her business, Grandma’s Gourmets in Albert Lea, specializes in unique jams, pickles, and salsas with colorful names like Bloody Pickles and Road Rage Jam. As the name of her business implies, many of Olson’s recipes originally came from her Great Grandma who was pickling and making jam in the 1890s.

Grandma’s Gourmets has grown rapidly over the past few years. Olson credits the scaling up of her business with being in the right place and talking to the right people. She cites her experience as a vendor at the 2015 FEAST! Marketplace as a pivotal moment for her business. The Marketplace is a tradeshow experience for food-makers and farmers from southern Minnesota and the surrounding areas to make sales to retail and food service buyers, and the general public. Olson, never one to be afraid to talk to strangers, saw a man wearing an Iowa jacket who was walking by her booth and said, “Hey, how about those Hawkeyes?”

The two started talking, he tasted some of her samples, and two weeks later her product was in a Hy-Vee store in Rochester.  The man in the jacket was the store director.

Read more on the SMIF Blog

Grandma's Gourmets has been at every FEAST!, so we're sure you're a fan, but have you tried all of those flavors? Hunt them down and find new favorites on Saturday, December 1st, because this business is one to watch.

As Kim says, "It is so exciting to see just how far we have come with our products, our team and our growth."  

In fact, they've just recently announced that they're a finalist for the 2019 Good Food Awards in the competitive "Preserve" category with their new Strawberry + Balsamic + Black Pepper Jam.

Stay tuned! Winners will be announced on January 11th in San Francisco.



Celebrate Farm to Table with FEAST! Restaurant Week

FEAST! Restaurant Week is a celebration of farm to table local foods by area restaurants, pubs, and cafés, Nov. 26 - Dec. 1, offering unique local food and beverage creations by area chefs and mixologists. 
The 17 venues participating in Restaurant Week are using products from FEAST! businesses to craft new specials—including both entrees and drinks.
When you order those specials, you receive a coupon for either $3 off general admission or $10 off an adult beer/wine/cider wristband admission to attend the FEAST! festival on Saturday, Dec. 1.

There's a Restaurant Week venue for every mood:

Bar Buffalo
Bleu Duck Kitchen
Chester's Kitchen and Bar
Forager Brewery
The Half Barrel Bar and Kitchen
Little Thistle Brewing
The Loop
Nosh Restaurant and Bar
Pedal Pushers Café
People’s Food Co-op
The Tap House on Historic Third
Tonic - Local Kitchen & Juice Bar
Victoria’s Italian Restaurant

Restaurant Week Details

Fresh & Tasty

Rochester Downtown Farmers Market joins FEAST! for Dec.1!

Rochester Downtown Farmers Market (RDFM) is a vendor-run organization with nearly 100 members. RDFM supports sustainable agriculture and family farms by providing farmers with a well-organized retail marketplace, promoting local access to quality farm products, and strengthening ties between family farms, food entrepreneurs and the surrounding community. 

All of the RDFM's vendors are local growers, producers, and bakers who live and farm or garden within 50 miles of Rochester, and some vendors have sold at the market since it was first organized in 1985! 

RDFM hosts around 25-40 vendors on Saturdays at Graham Park (Olmsted County Fairgrounds), with three holiday-themed markets Dec. 8, 15, and 22.

They'll have markets every other week January through April, and folks who haven't been before will be amazed with the variety of fresh produce all winter long!

This year, RDFM vendors will make a special appearance within the FEAST! Local Foods Marketplace festival on Dec. 1, which should provide a nice teaser for their winter markets that follow.



RDFM Collaborator CHOOCHOO-ca-CHEW offers a recipe for this sumptuous mini-quiche (pictured) featuring carmelized onions, blue cheese, and bacon or ham. The recipe is stellar, with fantastic directions for the all-important crust. Check it out—might be perfect for those holiday parties!

Contest of the Month!

Where, besides FEAST!, do you buy your local foods?

CSA? Farmers' Markets? What about packaged goods—what's your go-to store that you can rely on to bring in products from local businesses? 
Enter by telling us:
Where else, besides FEAST!, do you buy local foods?

Either reply to this email OR,
enter on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram 
using #LocalFeastFTW 

The prize:

THREE selected winners will each receive one of these durable and attractive canvas bags* (pictured) so you can fill it up with the treasures you find at FEAST! 2018!

*We recommend bringing your own shopping bags to FEAST!—our supplies are limited.


Now, about the OCTOBER CONTEST...

Thanks to those of you who shared who's coming with you to FEAST! 

We're happy to award the prize of a bag of coffee fromCarlson Roasting to 

Debra Jean Collum


Debra said, 
"I have come to LocalFeast every year with my husband. We have been married for 7 years and one of the things that drew us to each other is our interests in investing in local economies. We try to purchase as much as we don't grow through local farmers either directly from the farm or at farmers' market."


Making memories at FEAST!
We've heard from so many fans in the past few months about the joy of exploring foods with friends and family. Discoveries really are best when shared, and we at the FEAST! Network are excited to share hundreds of local foods and beverages with you again this year at the 5th Annual FEAST!

What's in store this year?
Cooking Demos — 10:30, 11:30, 12:30, 1:30 and 2:30 — ask questions, hone your skills!
People's Choice Voting — Gift basket winners at noon, 2:00, and 3:30, and People's Choice Award announced at 3:45!
Rochester Downtown Farmers Market — Featuring over a dozen farms, including the Rochester Alternative Learning Center's Green Thumb Initiative
Wine/Beer/Hard Cider — Wine and cider sales will be allowed (6 bottle limit)
Kids' Area — Located in the carpeted lobby, we'll have exhibits from the Children's Museum, a Craft Corner, a Seed Matching Game, the Veggie Grand Prix, and Kids' Choice Veggie Voting with volunteers from the Mayo Clinic nutrition internship program.

Who's Fueling FEAST!?

Local Food Buyers

"Buyers are the lifeblood of the FEAST! Local Foods Marketplace," we wrote in the Post-Event Survey Report following the 2016 event. We track the impact because FEAST! is all about increasing awareness of the local food businesses in our region.
From combined data over four years of tradeshows, 85% of industry buyers came away from FEAST! with new wholesale products either purchased or under consideration for their store, restaurant or other food service.

We're thrilled to have so many great industry buyers that attend the show each year. Let's hear it for this list of buyers who've registered to come for at least three of the last four years!

People's Food Co-op

Rainbow Food Co-op

Tonic - Local Kitchen & Juice Bar

Lakewinds Food Co-op

Market Distributing

Waconia School District

Pedal Pushers Cafe

Last but not least, we want to thank consumers like you for appreciating local foods, coming to FEAST! to patronize these commendable businesses, and asking for local products where you shop. We're building the food system of the future!

Pictured: Lisa Hartzheim with the local food gift basket she won at FEAST! 2017

The FEAST! Local Foods Marketplace is a production of the FEAST! Local Foods Network, which is always open to new members. Founded by Renewing the Countryside (RTC) and Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation (SMIF), both the Network and the Marketplace depend on collaboration with partner organizations and individuals.  
The Network supports local food growers and makers by boosting access to financing, peer networking, and sales opportunities. We welcome you to share this newsletter with the buttons below.
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