Way back when I first started researching my book, almost three years ago, I stumbled upon some farmers here and there who have turned out to be big leaders in their fields, so to speak.
Two of those I met early on were Natalie Veres and Cassie Parsons, who have turned their 10-acre Grateful Growers Farm just west of Lake Norman (northwest of Charlotte) into a sustainable showcase of heritage livestock. The breeds they help preserve include their specialty, Tamworth hogs, along with Delaware chickens, and Blue Swedish and Khaki Campbell ducks.
They are darlings of the Charlotte farm and food scene, and you’ll find their meat on the menus of most Charlotte-area restaurants that serve local meat and on sale at several stores and farmers’ markets.
Cassie also is a trained chef, and in fact donated to my book a recipe for Chipotle-Roasted Pork with Homemade Tortillas. I made it and it was yummy!! Last year, the pair started an all-local breakfast and lunch truck service called Harvest Moon Grille, which visits various locations around Charlotte.
And on Saturday, Oct. 16, you can sample some of their cooking at its source, at Grateful’s fourth annual (sorta) farm dinner. The event runs from 4 to 9 p.m. You can drive there yourself, or take a shuttle from downtown Charlotte, a convenient, eco-friendly option. Cost is $75, or, with the shuttle, $100. Check out the details here.
If you can’t make the farm dinner, check out Harvest Moon or wait for further word about the brick-and-mortar restaurant they plan to open. Can’t wait!