Jim Denevan, mastermind behind Outstanding in the Field
INFO: Farm dinners run June to October, plus a foraging dinner in November. ($180; outstandinginthefield.com) Outstanding in the Field: A Farm to Table Cookbook was published in June (Clarkson Potter; $33).
The dinner guests came from as far as Florida, but the squash blossoms sprang from the soil beneath our feet. It is twilight in the Santa Cruz foothills. The North Star sparkles in a dark plum sky.
Standing on a footpath at Everett Family Farm, a bucolic spot in Soquel, in Northern California, my wife and I survey a picturesque tableau.
Rows of butter lettuce and heirloom tomatoes stretch into the distance, bordered by a 100-foot-long candlelit table covered in white linen and shaded by persimmon and apple trees.
A sun-blushed man approaches, wearing a cowboy hat and sipping a glass of Albariño. "Nice night to eat out," Jim Denevan says.
He means it literally: alfresco dining at its earthiest extreme. As the founder of Outstanding in the Field, Denevan orchestrates movable feasts right on the farm.