Gourmet Guy Gathering
By Joe Nolan

Itâ€TMs springtime in Nashville and another wedding season is upon us. But, for men, wedding season is sometimes better known as “bachelor-party season.”

Just the mention of this manly rite fills the head with images of drunken, debauched dudes seeking out regrettable circumstances as they grieve the loss of yet another member of their stinky, belching tribe. My most recent experience of this all-important guyâ€TM night out was a perfectly respectful meeting for dinner at Merchants, enjoying apps, wines, and beers, lingering over entrees—I had the trout—and getting to know our new British friends from the brideâ€TMs side of the family.

This trend of “gourmet guy time” is catching on, and when Local Table invited Hank Delvin of Delvin Farms, Bob Woods of The Hamery, Josh Corlew of Hands on Nashvilleâ€TMs Urban Agriculture Program, and Tom Maddox of Carter Creek Green—all of Nashvilleâ€TMs slow-food community—to Masonâ€TMs to grab a beer, light a fire, and feast on the creations of chef Brandon Frohne, it quickly became a party.

“I was honored to be included,” says Delvin. “Weâ€TMre all dressed up, kicking back and drinking beers and eating delicious food.”

Chef Frohneâ€TMs menu included fries sprinkled with truffle salt, bone marrow and beef cheek confit, and lardo glazed scallops.

“Iâ€TMm a champion of Brandonâ€TMs,” says Woods. “He works harder than any chef I know.” Of course, Woods loved the food, but it was the experience that heâ€TMll remember most. “Itâ€TMs not often I wear a $600 sports coat curing ham. It was fun and completely different than the kind of thing I usually get to do.”

When heavyweights like these fellas get together, the talk inevitably turns to local, sustainable food, and itâ€TMs a subject they all take very seriously.

“First and foremost it eradicates the carbon footprint,” said Maddox. “Our travel time from harvest to table is 20 minutes.”

The taste and nutrition of just-picked foods speak for themselves, but between local food deserts and grocery aisles overflowing with processed foods and chemical additives, itâ€TMs a message that can be easily missed. In order to meet these challenges, local farmers and chefs have to be educators as well as producers.

“We have a program called â€~crop cityâ€TM at our urban farm,” explains Corlew. “We teach kids how to grow, we talk about nutrition, we spend a lot of time cooking, and then we look at the impacts of the current food system on the environment and health, and contrast that with the journey of a locally produced tomato from seed to plate. There are a lot of hidden costs associated with cheap food. We have to understand all of those impacts if weâ€TMre going to have a food system thatâ€TMs healthy and just.”

“Educating people is a huge part of what we do,” says Frohne. “When Iâ€TMm not cooking food, Iâ€TMm talking to people about it. Weâ€TMre all advocates when it comes to local, sustainable foods.”

And a little knowledge never tasted so good.

Creative Director, Didi Rainey

Styling, Christina Logan, CLD Design and Meg Kelly, Hester and Cook

Supplies from Hester and Cook (see below)

Southern Events, Harvest Table and Chairs

Floral, Beyond Details

Photography, Frenzel Studios

Clothing, Brooks Brothers, Green Hills

Kitchen Papers 30" x 50" Cutlery Table Runner - Retail: $34.00 Kitchen Papers Fork, Knife, Spoon Menu Note - Retail: $11.00 Kitchen Papers Fork, Knife, Spoon Cocktail Napkin - Retail: $11.00 CAKE Vintage, Vintage 5-piece place setting - Retail: $34.00 www.hesterandcook.com or by visiting our shop: Hester & Cook
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Nashville, TN 37211