What a fantastic community we have created within our local food industry here in Spokane!
When Adam Hegsted got the invitation to take his Wandering Table to the James Beard Foundation in New York City on June 2, he was understandably quite thrilled. It’s the first time any chef from our region has been offered this opportunity.
But the invitation was just the beginning. Preparing a Wandering Table meal for 80 guests 3,000 miles away from home requires a team — a team of talented people willing and able to travel, at their own expense.
In addition to his brother, Ryan Stoy, executive chef at Downriver Grill, Adam pulled together a team including Pete Tobin, chef-educator for the Inland Northwest Culinary Academy; Viljo, Syringa in Coeur d’Alene; Moe, Matt and Molly, sous chefs at the Coeur d’Alene Casino; and me — I’ll be serving Roast House coffee service – pour over, or better know as Melitta, one cup at a time, service at the dinner.
All of us are thrilled with this opportunity and, while the monies to fund our travels are uncertain, we chose to move forward anyway. And as we move forward the most incredible acts of support and kindness from within our community are happening…
- ACF Chefs de Cuisine of the Inland NW raised $1K and SCC faculty raised another $700 to help fund Pete’s travel.
- Students of the local ACF chapter chipped in and raised $3K to help cover hotel costs for the entire crew
- A local winery is donating all the wine
- Paul Fish, president of Mountain Gear, donated a roundtrip ticket to NY for my travel.
- My big brother Russell, hearing of the dinner, wrote a check for $600 to help defray my expense.
- The CDA Casino covered the cost of all printed materials (over $8k) and gift packs for the dinner quests. They also absorbed all costs in hosting a ‘trial run dinner’ at their Ts’ elusm Steakhouse .
- My Bunn coffee equipment rep, Rich Moceri, has offered providing and installing a hot water machine and grinder, at no cost, at the James Beard House for our dinner’s coffee service.
Since starting our little roast house, a little more than two years ago, the overwhelming community support, acts of kindness and support we’ve received from people within our community has been mind-boggling. As busy people trying to make our way in the world, we have a choice: We can put our heads down and focus on our own gritty individual survival; or we can reach out and travel together with the people around us, knowing that our odds for survival are better when we all work together. I like traveling this road together – it makes for a sweet life. Thank you all…
And, besides it’s way more fun to travel together.