There’s A Pretty Cool Farm Dinner Happening At Kensington Quarters This Weekend

They're doing a "six week privation" menu showcasing local shoulder season produce.


If you’re living off the land, what do you do when overwintered vegetables—potatoes, carrots, turnips—begin to dwindle before the new crops in the field are ready to eat? You get creative. This period, called Spring Famine, or Sechswoche Noth (Six Week Privation), its Pennsylvania Dutch name, is the theme of a seven course menu this Sunday, May 22nd, at Kensington Quarters. It’s a collaboration between chef Steve Eckerd and farmer Alex Wenger from Field’s Edge, a research farm in Lancaster, PA. In a moment when “local” peas, rhubarb, and strawberries appear on “seasonal” menus long before they arrive at area farmer’s markets, this meal will instead showcase sustainable eating with ingredients that actually reflect the Midatlantic right now.

For the past two years, Eckerd has made visits to Wenger’s farm to learn about sustainable farming firsthand. Their collaboration led to the idea for this event, set to feature certain foods that locavores would be hard-pressed to find elsewhere. Though the menu is subject to change “due to rain and groundhogs,” the plan from Eckerd, and a team that includes Ari Miller of Food Underground, baker Brett McGinnis, formerly of Le Bec Fin, and Damon Menapace and Katie Maley, also of Kensington Quarters, is an unusual one. It’s set to begin with sips of “Kettle Drum Tea,” made from foraged and preserved flowers and herbs, and bites exploring flavors that straddle the season: autumn’s apples and the first shoots of spring such as asparagus and greens. Produce nerds will be excited to taste Floriani Red Flint Corn, organic squab paired with near-extinct Wild Pigeon Beans grown for The Roughwood Seed Collection, and Makataan watermelon, a variety bred for storage.

There are 60 seats available at $45.00 each for the event, which begins at 4:30. Reservations can be made by calling 267-314-5086. And you can check out the full menu right here:

“City to the Edge” Part 2:

‘Six Week Privation’


Menu subject to change due to rain and groundhogs

Farmer Field Guide Snacks


Spring Roots

Wintered Apple

Makataan Melon

Preserved Egg

Grains and Butter

“Kettle Drum” Tea

Foraged Greens

Sunchoke, Apple Blossom, Pecan

Susquehanna Turkey

Dr. Martin’s Lima, Red Bud, Spruce

“Hairy Potato”

Espelette, Sakura, Butter

Nettle Tart

Floriani Corn, Snippled Beets, Goat Cheese

Proprietary Pot Pie

Spelt, Mustard Flower, Dandelion Wine

Pa Dutch Sweets

Strawberry, Rhubarb, Violet

Kensington Quarters [f8b8z]