First Lady's Luncheon Showcases American Grown Flowers

Photo by Kirstin Smith Photography

This was the 106th annual effort by the Congressional Club to host the First Lady’s Luncheon.

It was also the third opportunity for Certified American Grown to provide all of the flowers for this bipartisan tradition.

Each table was adorned with a beautiful centerpiece, carefully handcrafted by an all volunteer team of dedicated designers, helping to showcase the beauty of American Grown Flowers. Accent Decor provided all of the vases for this year’s luncheon.  Photo by Kirstin Smith Photography

On May 15, every table centerpiece, the dais, the high tops, the flower wall, the runway and all 800 boutonnières were 100% American Grown. America’s flower famers proudly sent over 15,000 stems of flowers from farms across the country to Washington, D.C.

An all-volunteer team of floral designers worked together to help make all of the American Grown Flowers shine for this year’s First Lady’s Luncheon. The awesome T-shirts were donated by Nature Supply Co.. Photo by Kirstin Smith Photography

An incredible team of 32 floral designers convened in Washington, D.C. and transformed the Washington Hilton Ballroom into an amazing display of the beauty that is represented in our homegrown flowers. Lead by Kelly Shore of Petals by the Shore and Mary Kate Kinnane of The Local Bouquet, designers worked through Mother’s Day weekend to ensure everything was ready for the almost 2,000 people who would attend this time-honored event honoring the First Lady of the United States.

The Washington Hilton Ballroom is the second largest ballroom in Washington, D.C., capable of hosting over 2,000 people.  Photo by Kirstin Smith Photography

Unfortunately, First Lady Melania Trump  was unable to attend. Admitted into Walter Reed Hospital on May 14 for a routine kidney procedure, the luncheon would go on without the First Lady for just the second time in the event’s history.

Certified American Grown representatives pose for a picture with Second Lady Karen Pence (center). Pictured from left to right, Jumana Misleh, Kasey Cronquist, Benno Dobbe, Second Lady Karen Pence, Pamela Arnosky, Kelly Shore and Klazina Dobbe. Photo by Marion Meakem Photography

Second Lady Karen Pence stood in for the First Lady and a delegation of American flower farmers had the opportunity to speak with her about the growing movement for American Grown Flowers. In conversations, flower farmers encouraged the administration to consider bringing American Grown Flowers back to the White House, featuring the homegrown origin of flowers like they do food and wine.

Certified American Grown hosted Congressman Tom O’Halleran during the luncheon. Congressman O’Halleran’s wife, Pat, was this year’s chair of the First Lady’s Luncheon. Going around the table from the left, Congressman O’Halleran, Kasey Cronquist, Michael Genovese, Betty Joslyn, Mary Kate Kinnane, Kelly Shore, Klazina Dobbe, Benno Dobbe, Claudine Perez, Kate Penn, Pamela Arnosky and Jumana Misleh.   Photo by Marion Meakem Photography

“It was an incredible feat,” shared Certified American Grown Administrator Kasey Cronquist. “From the flowers sent by our farms, the transportation provided by Delaware Valley, the vases from Accent Decor, the amazing volunteer design team; everyone came together to contribute to something beautiful and it really reflects the ‘can do’ of what Americans can accomplish when we are working together.”

Wearing their American Grown boutonnières, guests were excited to take their picture in front of the beautiful flower wall. Photo by Marion Meakem Photography

A major highlight for guests attending this year was the floral wall and boutonnière bar. Guests stood in line for the opportunity to take a picture in front of the all-American Grown Flower wall. The boutonnières made the event even more festive, and nearly everyone in attendance wore one!

Photo by Kirstin Smith Photography

“It was an honor to be involved with this year’s luncheon,” shared Kelly Shore, this year’s floral design team leader. “We had an outstanding group of volunteers and I could not be more proud of all that we accomplished on behalf of America’s flower farmers. They sent us some amazing flowers to work with.”

Kelly Shore of Petals by the Shore and Mary Kate Kinnane led this year’s design team effort, responsible for over 180 arrangements and a team of 32 volunteer designers. The awesome T-shirts were donated by Nature Supply Co.. Photo by Kirstin Smith Photography

Thank you to the following flower farms for contributing over 15,000 stems of flowers to this year’s luncheon:

The all-American Grown Boutonnières were a big hit at this year’s luncheon.


  • CallaCo
  • Dramm & Echter
  • Eufloria
  • Green Valley Floral
  • Holland America Flowers
  • Kendall Farms
  • Myriad Flowers
  • Ocean View Flowers
  • Protea USA
  • Resendiz Brothers
  • Sun Valley Floral Farm


  • Fern Trust


  • Len Busch Roses

    The design team worked together to prepare the ballroom.


  • Oregon Flowers


  • Texas Specialty Cut Flowers


  • Bloomia
  • Harmony Harvest

A big thank you to our partners Accent Decor, Delaware Valley Wholesale, Smithers-Oasis and Nature Supply Co.

Second Lady Karen Pence stood in and represented the First Lady during this year’s First Lady’s Luncheon. Kirstin Smith Photography

[Video] Watch This! Fallbrook Was Magical

Inspiring Video Features Dinner at Resendiz Brothers Protea

We worked with Orange County wedding videographer Brian Kadar of Love Is Cinema to help capture the beauty and splendor our guests recently experienced at the American Grown Field to Vase Dinner at Resendiz Brothers Protea Growers in Fallbrook, California.

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Check out this quick-two minute feature of this mountaintop experience!

It will take your breath away!

When you recover, share your comments, below, and then share the video widely with your friends. They’ll thank you for it!

Certified American Grown Heads to Sonoma Wine Country’s Premier Wine and Food Festival


Certified American Grown is supporting Sonoma wine country’s favorite festival – Passport to Dry Creek Valley – April 28-29 by providing American Grown Flowers and foliage for Geyser Peak Winery’s spring garden party that’s part of Passport weekend.

As a  national sponsor, Geyser Peak brings their amazing wines to the dinner table for the American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour.

Geyser Peak Winery is a national sponsor of the American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour, now in its fourth year. During Passport to Deer Creek Valley, visitors to Geyser Peak Winery can make their own corsage or boutonniere from Certified American Grown Flowers and greens and enjoy 100 percent American Grown floral designs.

Throughout the weekend, guests can attend elaborate themed parties with exquisite food and wine pairings at 40+ participating wineries. They can also meet Sonoma County’s most renowned chefs, including Michelin-starred Chef Charlie Palmer, Diavola Chef/Owner Dino Bugica, Bistro 29 Chef/Owner Brian Anderson and other culinary stars while savoring their inspired culinary creations alongside newly released and limited-edition wines.

Wineries taking part range from the internationally acclaimed Ridge Vineyards and Ferrari-Carano to boutique wineries like Nalle and Talty that produce fewer than 2,000 cases per year.

Winery party themes range from the glamorous (think Old Hollywood red carpet) to the goofy (think Caddyshack), with unforgettable food and wine at each stop. Live entertainment and activities support the wineries’ unique themes. Music will include a Beatles cover band, bluegrass, jazz, Hawaiian music from Maile Swing, funk from The Jacktones and more.

Three not-to-miss wineries

Geyser Peak Winery

Geyser Peak will be celebrating spring with a festive garden party! Guests can build their own “floral flourish” (otherwise known as a boutonniere or corsage) thanks to blooms donated by Certified American Grown. Then, sample Geyser Peak’s new Rosé and Sauvignon Blanc releases and, on Saturday, get your groove on with special musical guests Junk in the Trunk.

Amphora Winery

Journey to Amphora to explore the kingdoms of their “Game of Rhônes,” from dark and brooding Syrah in the north, to the sunlit realm of Grenache in the south, with the  questionable prince Petite Sirah and the awesome alliance of GSM — all vying for the coveted throne.

Seghesio Family Vineyards

America’s heritage grape will be paired with America’s favorite pastime at Seghesio’s baseball-themed party. Guests can round the bases to taste distinctive Zinfandels and Executive Chef Peter Janiak’s twists on classic ball game fare, then step up to the mound to show off their pitching skills (for prizes of course)! Complete with a rock-n-roll band, this stop is sure to be a grand slam!

Round out your Passport weekend with a Prelude to Passport lunch on Friday, April 27 or the newest Friday night event, The Vintage Soiree, featuring exquisite Dry Creek Valley wines and beautifully paired cuisine from the best Sonoma County chefs.


Friday, April 27, 2018 – Prelude to Passport and The Vintage Soiree

Saturday and Sunday, April 28-29, 2018, from 11 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.



General admission price: $135.00 for a two-day passport or $90.00 for Sunday-only passport. $50.00 for

daily designated driver tickets. Tickets are on sale online at


Add-Ons :

$175 – Vintage Soiree: The new ticket in town. Our Friday night, exclusive party for our Passport guests.

$75 – Prelude to Passport: Lunch at A Rafanelli, Cast Wines, DaVero Farms or Wilson Winery.

$50 – Vineyard Designate Tour: Tours at Mauritson’s Rockpile vineyard – Pritchett Peaks or Old Vine territory at Saini Vineyards.

$25 – Vineyard Tour: Attend a vineyard tour the morning of Passport, offered Saturday at Peterson Winery’s diverse Bradford Mountain and Sunday at Frick Winery’s home-to-Rhônes, Owl Hill Vineyard.




Win a Breathtaking Protea Wreath!

Spring has officially sprung, despite wild weather on both coasts, and we’re celebrating its arrival with a fun spring flowers giveaway.


In a nod to the first stop on the 2018 American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour on April 7 at Resendiz Brothers Protea, and because we just can’t resist sharing our bounty, we’re giving away one of their breathtaking protea wreaths.


Win a beautiful wreath from Resendiz Brothers, like the one featured in Sunset Magazine!



Submit your entry and you could win a protea wreath to adorn your door (like the one featured in Sunset Magazine!) – and because proteas are long lasting, it will look lovely all spring long!

Can’t get enough of the amazing protea? Check out these beautiful images from @resendizbrothers on Instagram!

Check out @ResendizBrothers on Instagram! Can you believe this beautiful farm is our first stop in the 2018 American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour?!

Farm & Flower Guide Inspires Wholesaler to Increase American Grown Offerings

Andrea Grist, business manager for Florasource KC in Overland Park, Kansas, was preparing for a customer open house when she had a bright idea. Why not have some issues of Florists’ Review available to hand out at the event?

When the magazines arrived, Grist was happy to find the publication included copies of the new Certified American Grown Farm & Flower Guide as an added bonus. What she didn’t foresee was how that bonus publication would impact her business.

Since starting with the wholesaler in March, Grist had been changing things up in terms of suppliers, making an effort to work with America’s flower farms. When she saw the guide, she expanded her thinking and began learning about flower farmers nationwide who could provide the flowers and foliage she was seeking.

It was fortuitous opportunity to support the American Grown Flowers movement.

“For me, it’s important to be mindful of American Grown products and where products come from. It’s our responsibility as consumers to feel comfortable with where we’re getting things from,” Grist explains.

In addition to sharing the magazine and the flower guide at the open house, Grist also showcased different varieties of flowers sold by Florasource KC along with a tag about their origin.

American Grown Flowers are a priority to Florasource.

“I enjoy telling people about it and giving people the background. I also enjoy knowing that we’re supporting and American farmer,” Grist says.

And she’s walking the talk.

Grist is now getting a truck a week of American Grown Flowers. And she’s sourcing flowers from Florida and several small farms in her area that offer special varieties.

Certified American Grown brand waves proudly on the flowers at Florasource.

She also has a Facebook page where local farmers can let her know what they have available, like the tuberose, zenias and peonies that grow well in her area.

Grist makes a point of stopping at flower farms whenever she travels and follows up by blogging about the farmers she meets. The farm and flower guide comes in handy there, too, as a way to find nearby farms.

“It’s part of my job to educate our floral designers about the process, the supply chain, the struggles the farmers face,” Grist describes. “It’s all full-circle.”

And all paths lead to American Grown Flowers.

Get In On the Hottest Design Trend at J Schwanke Workshop

Add the Workshop to Your Field to Vase Experience

One of the hottest trends in floral decor is all-foliage arrangements that incorporate a vast assortment of greens into gorgeous, textural and long-lasting designs.

Guests at the American Grown Field to Vase Dinner on Nov. 18 at FernTrust, Inc., in Seville, Florida, can become experts on all aspects of the trend when they add the foliage design workshop with J Schwanke to their experience. The workshop is also scheduled for Nov. 18, from 9-11 a.m.

Schwanke, creative consultant for FernTrust and a renowned floral designer, will teach participants how to braid palm leaves, weave Ti leaves and make aspidistra roses. They’ll also help make foliage alligators that will be part of the evening’s decor, decorate wine glasses to be used at dinner later that day and contribute to an all-foliage portrait of Bobbi Ecker-Blatchford, a celebrated floral designer and former FernTrust consultant.

Ecker-Blatchford’s portrait will be on display at the foliage crown table where dinner guests will each make a fresh foliage crown.

“These are easy little projects that are super impressive,” Schwanke describes. “It’s all about fabulous foliage and all the cool stuff you can do with it.”

Corona’s FlexDial pruner has received numerous accolades and each workshop attendee will receive a free pair.


This exclusive event is limited to 24 participants, so be sure to add it at checkout.

As a workshop attendee, you will be provided with a complimentary Corona FlexDial pruner. However, you are encouraged to also bring your own florist knife, scissors and bunch cutter.

Reserve your seat at the last stop on the 2018 American Grown Field to Vase Dinner and add the fabulous foliage workshop!


Grower Co-op Backs Once-in-a-Lifetime Experience

Next Stop is Fern Capital of the World

Being recognized as best-in-class is serious business.

FernTrust Inc. in Seville, Florida, doesn’t take that designation lightly. Established in 1986, FernTrust is a cooperative of quality oriented farmers who share a rich history in agribusiness.

It’s a partnership that’s unique to the industry – acting as a cooperative allows the farmer-members to do what they do best – grow the highest quality foliage available.

FernTrust growers include James Register, Bob Thompson, John Hoblick, Immo Redeker, Leon Braddock, Jimmy Register and Jana Register. Together these growers have decades of experience making FernTrust one of the most trusted foliage producers in the country.

Harvesting the lush green ferns at FernTrust, Inc.

And these growers are huge contributors to the moniker “Fern Capital of the World,” – the title bestowed on this area of Volusia County Florida.

All this recognition and focus on quality is proof positive of what these growers will bring to the American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour, coming to FernTrust on Nov. 18. These growers have partnered to bring their amazing fern and foliage to the world. Imagine what will happen when they host a pop-up dinner party!

Guests will dine among FertTrust’s 360 acres of fern and foliage, enjoying a multi-course artisanal meal, wine pairings and craft beer. Grower David Register will also host a VIP tour of the site for 20 guests. And renowned designer and television host J Schwanke will wow guests with tablescapes that exemplify the “all-foliage” trend.

David and Jana Register, together with J Schwanke (center)

Make your Field to Vase Dinner truly fantastic by adding a foliage design workshop with J, also on Nov. 18 from 9-11 a.m. J’s calling the workshop “Fabulous Foliage Techniques” and at this exclusive event guests will learn how to weave palm leaves into nautilus shells, create aspidistra roses and attach Milky Way foliage to wine and champagne glasses. Each participant will also make their own all foliage crown and foliage centerpiece.

Plus, you’ll get hands on in helping create the exclusive foliage photo backdrops that will be part of the dinner. This exclusive event is limited to 24 participants, so be sure to add it at checkout.

With this combination of growers paired with a farm tour, workshop and a fine dining experience, you don’t want to miss this last stop for the 2017 American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour.

Save your seat!

Grace Gardens Wins American Grown Certification in Relaunch Contest

Grace Gardens of Birmingham, Alabama, is the winner of a free Certified American Grown Flowers certification as part of the recent relaunch of the brand and the announcement of new third-party certification partner Where Food Comes From (WFCF).

With the win, Grace Gardens’ farmer florist Kelly Wood becomes the first Certified American Grown  flower farm in Alabama.

Wood operates a 3-acre flower farm on a series of non-contiguous lots in a wooded Birmingham neighborhood. One lot is also home to her design studio where she creates using the seasonal flowers she grows.

Her season starts in March with forced branches and early bulbs and runs through fall. Throughout the year, she grows lilies, sweet pea, larkspur and even peonies, along with heirloom roses from 150 bushes.

As a floral designer, she creates for weddings, holidays, personal deliveries and community events.

Wood said earning the certification lends legitimacy and respect to her local, sustainably grown approach. As the only flower grower in Alabama since her start in 2012, Wood says the certification will help her spread the word about the importance of locally sourced flowers to wholesalers, customers and the three new flower farms that got a start this year in the state.

“I want us to have a really strong local source of flowers. It’s common other places in the country, but if you go to a grocery store here and the flowers are marked ‘local,’ it’s a 400-mile radius around Alabama. This year has really been about getting everyone on the same page and getting wholesalers to realize there are farmers here and to look to us before ordering,” Wood said.

Other farms that entered the contest to win certification also pointed to “credibility,” “legitimacy” and “honor” that American Grown Certification conveys.

As one entrant put it: “Being certified will help brand my flowers and offer a degree of quality that will qualify the origin of my farm. I am proud to provide American Grown Flowers. It would be a privilege to have Certified American Grown and their qualifications to add to my farm.”

Certified American Grown is the largest consumer-facing brand in the floral industry communicating the importance of origin and buying American Grown Flowers. With WFCF in place, Certified American Grown has created a new online audit processing system that streamlines the procedure for farms seeking to earn this valuable certification for marketing and increasing sales.

The American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour Covers New Territory in 2017

Reserve Your Seat at the Table Today!

Last year’s sold out American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour took guests on extraordinary adventures, from a world-renowned celebrity event stylist’s private flower farm, to the largest tulip farm in America, to a ranunculus field overlooking the ocean. With so many accolades and happy guests with high expectations fulfilled, we knew we needed to raise the bar even further in 2017.


Dinner in The Flower Fields overlooking the ocean – Carlsbad, California, dinner in 2016.

Deciding where to go and how to format each dinner is a serious process for our team. We listen to guest feedback and reviews, try new things at each of the dinners (a boutonnière bar, cocktails that feature edible flowers and live music, for example), but at the heart of it all is our Certified American Grown Flower Farms and some amazing sought-after floral designers who come together to help share their stories and passion for American Grown Flowers.


Bluegrass band playing dinner tunes at Sun Valley Floral Farms in Arcata, California.

After months of planning, we’re ready to announce our 2017 tour locations. We have some surprises in store for you as well that we’ll unveil in coming months (for instance, you asked for more hands-on floral experiences and we’ll soon be announcing some special opportunities we’ve added to the tour that will provide just that).

Boutonniere Bar 2

Floral fun at The Fresh Herb Company in Boulder, Colorado.

One of the more remote destinations on our list is more of a Field to Vase Adventure than a dinner.  We’ll blaze new territory when we travel to Alaska to visit the only place in the world where peonies thrive during the mid-to-late summer months. Scenic Place Peonies is remote, and travel will require some planning. We’re putting together travel information to assist you in preparing for this trip of a lifetime, along with a package that will include the dinner, a private farm tour and hands-on floral experiences. If you’re interested in this date, please let our team know as space is very limited.

So, without further ado, here are the 2017 American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour dates and locations:


The tour locations were selected to represent the variety of flowers and growing conditions found in the United States. While we can’t showcase every flower each year (that would be a feat!), we always strive to introduce new American flower farms and varieties to our guests.

Here is what some of our guests said last year about the American Grown Field to Vase Dinner Tour:

“It was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had. Aside from my wedding, it was the best event I’ve been to. Every detail was thoughtful and innovative. I loved the venue, the boutonniere bar, the swag bag!” – Erin R., Boulder, Colorado

“It was truly a beautiful and unique experience! I would attend all the dinners around the country if I could!” – Adrienne S., Carlsbad, California

“The Field to Vase dinner was, quite honestly, the most extraordinary event I’ve ever attended in Humboldt County. Everyone came with a spirit of adventure, ready to traipse through the greenhouses in all their farm-chic elegance on a behind-the-scenes tour, before settling in for a fantastic gourmet meal. It is such a joy to rally around local flower farmers and make new friends! It was an unforgettable night that people here are still talking about.” – Amy Stewart, acclaimed garden writer and best-selling author of “Flower Confidential: The Good, the Bad and the Beautiful.”

Guest 3

Cheers to Certified American Grown Flowers!

Guest 2

Every location has the best selfie photo-ops, just like David Beahm’s Thistle Dew Farm in Quakertown, Pennsylvania. Wouldn’t you think so?

Guest 1

Food, flowers, wine and friendship! They’re #F2V staples.

Guest 5

It was a true bloggers’ paradise at Cornerstone Sonoma with Sunset Magazine! If it’s not Insta-worthy, we’re not having it!

Guest 4

Guests at Texas Specialty Cut Flowers got theirs … it’s all about the F2V swag bag.

Save your seat today as we expect a sell-out tour for the third year in a row. In the weeks, ahead we’ll be announcing the star-studded cast of floral designers involved with this year’s tour. World-renowned and pioneers in their craft, the 2017 slate of designers will be bringing their own following to the table, so seats will go quickly.

Cheers to a big year with an even BIGGER #F2V adventure! Save your seats today!


Let’s get social! Follow us on Facebook and Instagram for the latest F2V news, special behind the scene moments and live stories! #AmericanGrown #F2V #OriginMatters

Screen Shot 2017-01-13 at 11.31.31 AM

(Did you attend last year’s tour? Share your stories and pictures and help us spread the good news of this year’s tour! We’ll be watching for your posts!)

Experience Heirloom Fire at David Beahm’s Thistle Dew Farm

Meet our featured Chef Jim Gop, owner of Heirloom Fire, a fire-based catering events company located in the Berkshires.


Jim Gop of Heirloom Fire, featured #F2V chef at David Beahm’s Thistle Dew Farm.

In the midst of his second complete season, Chef Jim Gop is no stranger to putting his talent and passion in front of the fire to wow his guests. Focusing on the dining experience from start to finish, Jim and his team have a night of wonderful surprises in store for our guests.

Providing our #F2V guests with an experience unlike any other, Jim has prepared a menu fit for a king (or queen) at none other than world-renowned celebrity event designer turned American flower farmer, David Beahm’s farm, Thistle Dew Farm.

Recently, we had the chance to catch up with our featured chef to talk about everything from what inspires him as a chef and business owner, to his story of chasing dreams in California and the aesthetic he has established within his company, Heirloom Fire.

F2V: We are so excited to have you join us at David Beahm’s Thistle Dew Farm in Quakertown, PA as our featured Chef! What will we see during this upcoming dinner?

Screen Shot 2016-08-31 at 2.00.03 PMJim: I am super excited to come along for the ride! It is important to pay attention to the aesthetic of the event, which happens to be much bigger than just the food. It’s the entire experience that we will be focusing on. To be able to work with the Field to Vase Dinner Tour and David Beahm to create this exclusive experience is beyond thrilling.

The menu we designed for the night will elaborate on that Pennsylvania feel. We will be roasting and cooking pigs in various ways, as well as serving handcrafted charcuterie, hearth baked breads, grilled summer vegetables, cast iron roasted lattice peach pies, fireside s’mores and more.

F2V: What is your story? How did you get started in the industry?

Screen Shot 2016-08-31 at 1.55.54 PMJim: I have always been into art and loved expressing my vision through art. In my early years, I started drawing and eventually got really into special makeup effects, even working on sculpting prosthetics for faces. The attention to detail has always been my thing. Wanting to pursue a career in the entertainment industry, I went to California at the age of 17. Not breaking into the career I aimed for, I traveled back to the East Coast. I began to work for a grocer (similar to Whole Foods) in which I learned a lot about seasonality. It was that moment I began to fall in love with food. I attended the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City and had the opportunity to learn hands-on through internships at high-end, white tablecloth restaurants. Eventually, I got burnt out from putting in long hours and often felt disconnected from who I was preparing a meal for within the restaurant scene.

Shortly after, I began working for my friend who did simple pig roasts and grilled vegetables. I couldn’t help but think how amazing this experience was to be outside and actually interact with the guests. I wanted to marry this artistic and higher-end background I had with the feeling of being outdoors. Sooner or later, Heirloom Fire was born. Believe it or not, this is our second full season as a business. It has been great!

F2V: If you can describe your work in one word, what would it be and why?

Screen Shot 2016-08-29 at 10.47.00 AMJim: Captivating. We rely so much through display and exposure. When we set up for our events, we try to tuck ourselves away from the actual ceremony. Guests may visualize smoke in the air or see some fire flumes in the sky, but they eventually must turn a corner. For example, when you go to a baseball game, you purchase your tickets from the outside, come into the field, and it’s just an explosion of green. That’s the experience I want to provide my guests when they come around the corner from seeing the amazing smoke coming up from the flames, and the sounds of everything cooking.

F2V: As a chef, what inspires you?

Screen Shot 2016-08-31 at 2.02.00 PMJim: I am always inspired by the local flavor of the locations we travel to. For this dinner, I want to highlight Pennsylvania with fresh summer ingredients grown locally on the East Coast. For me, summer is decided by peaches and melons that are so juicy, you want to stand over a bathtub while eating them!

Seasonality plays a huge factor in inspiration, which has captivated my love and appreciation for food but also the process of how a summer peach tastes different than a peach that would be shipped in from Chile or Argentina in January.

F2V: What makes you different compared to all the other Chefs we have featured in the past?

Screen Shot 2016-08-31 at 1.56.38 PMJim: When it comes to our food, it is important to realize its more than just the taste, but also the presentation. We believe the overall experience is the most important factor. We are a fully exposed open-kitchen, conscious of reducing waste and focusing on the roots of cooking.
When we do events, we do not use any electricity. Everything is hand-driven. For refrigeration, we use our ice chests, which require large ice blocks. We have no plastic (anything) used in our kitchen. We use vintage copper and brass utensils, as well as kitchenware. From what I know, no one is doing it like us. People often stand near our set up and I want them to come closer – to give them a tour of our kitchen and explain our process for their meal. Our guests get to see the whole story being told by food. I want to capture your attention.

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It is no secret that your FULL attention will be captivated ALL NIGHT through your eyes, nose, ears, and taste buds with Chef Jim in the house! Join the Field to Vase Dinner Tour for a dinner to remember in Quakertown, PA on Wednesday, September 14!

Save you seats today!