(for the TLA April Journal)
There were many cooks in the kitchen that helped to inspire the Chefs at the Landings Clubs to have their own gardens on Skidaway Island. After all, there is NOTHING like fresh herbs and produce to savor a main course or any dish for that matter.
So when last year’s Fitness Center construction began at Oakridge, Director of Club Operations, Gunnard Cunningham designed a raised bed to be built just outside Chef Zambito’s kitchen for growing herbs. Rosemary, Basil, Lemon-Thyme, Oregano and Mint were planted…tended… and harvested for what has become a clear success for the Oakridge kitchen!
Recently, the Chefs at all four Clubs agreed to expand this venture by supplementing the produce they purchase from local farms by growing vegetables at Skidaway Farms. After all, every restaurateur knows that serving locally grown produce is a sure way to attract those customers with a discerning palette…and how much more “local” could they get!
With the help of Farm Committee members, Donna Shea and Janet Waldie, the Chefs hired professional organic gardener, Andy Schwartz to cultivate and maintain their harvest in the four plots along Doc Charley Lane. Andy has two plots of vegetable seeds already in the soil…with his eye on a harvest of radishes and lettuce within the month. Not only will he tend the garden, but Andy’s services will also include dividing the harvest equally among four Clubs.
“Our Skidaway Island harvests will be a supplement to the food distributor deliveries we receive every day,” said Director Cunningham. “And we have also designed a leaf-style icon that will appear on the menu next to any dish that has a Skidaway Island ingredient in it.” He is now planning herb gardens at the Marshwood and Deer Creek clubs that will be maintained by the Chefs and the club’s grounds staff.
So within the near future, patrons of the Club’s dining rooms should see those leaf-icons on their menus. Not only will they verify the “local-ness” of the ingredients, but they will be a reminder of how committed the Landings Club restaurants are to the quality of the food they serve!