Paul Virant

Paul Virant: A Good Food Chef Who Keeps On Giving

“Farm to table” dining may have become commonplace on Chicago’s restaurant menus. But Chef Paul Virant was in the vanguard of the movement just 13 years when he opened Vie restaurant in the suburb of Western Springs. And he is all about giving back to the community. Within a recent three-day span, Paul did a cooking demo with the Gardeneers audience for schoolchildren in Englewood, then was the honoree for Angelic Organics Learning Center at their annual dinner.

Our Little Greenhouse: A Growing Young Farmers Story

Jen Daniels-Lake grows Certified Naturally Grown vegetables and herbs at her Wild Beet Farm in Indian Creek, Illinois, located 35 miles from downtown Chicago in the northwest suburbs. A member of the Chillinois (Chicago-Illinois) Young Farmers Coalition, Jen has provided permission for Good Food on Every Table to republish the following article about early spring on the half-acre farm.

Lambs, Organic and Fiber Make Big Rock a Destination CSA

Donna and Scott Lehrer gave up corporate work for organic farming near Chicago nearly two decades ago. Their Big Rock Organics at Lamb of God Farm not only provides the food products for their Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) subscribers, but also wool for daughter Natasha Lehrer Lewis’ Esther’s Place fiber studio. The farm is a member of Band of Farmers: The Chicagoland CSA Coalition, and will be participating in the CSA Pavilion at FamilyFarmed’s Good Food Festival at Chicago’s UIC Forum on Saturday, March 18.

Urban Farm to Table is Grower Jen Rosenthal’s Tomato Jam

Urban agriculture in on the rise, in many cases providing jobs, opportunities and access to Good Food for residents of underserved communities. But the farm Jen Rosenthal manages on Chicago’s South Side has particular social significance: It is on a site once occupied by apartment towers of The Robert Taylor Homes, which had grown so troubled-plagued that its residents were relocated and the buildings torn down.

Frontera Farmer Foundation’s 2016 Grants Include Friends of FamilyFarmed

Frontera Farmer Foundation is a Chicago-based nonprofit that reflects the commitment of Chef Rick Bayless and his Frontera restaurant group to help local and regional farmers build their businesses and succeed. The foundation presents the lineup of its 2016 grant recipients, and we are very pleased to see many friends and associates of FamilyFarmed.

How SAAGE’S Shared Kitchen Boosts Startup Food Businesses: A Good Food Festival Story

SAAGE Culinary Studio in the Chicago suburb of Naperville, Illinois, is a shared-use commercial kitchen providing startup food businesses with access to all the commercial grade equipment that they need to make their products. Owner Gayatri Borthakur discusses the philosophy behind the business, which will be a participant in FamilyFarmed’s Good Food Festival & Conference.

Jody Osmond and Julia McDonald of Band of Farmers

It’s All About The Farmers: A Good Food Festival Exhibitor Story

FamilyFarmed’s 12th annual Good Food Festival & Conference is scheduled for March 24-26 at Chicago’s UIC Forum, and exhibitor registration is open. Robin Schirmer, project coordinator for the Chicagoland coalition of CSA farms, shares her experience working with and attending the event.

Donate to FamilyFarmed’s IndieGoGo Drive — And Help Us #GrowYoungFarmers

FamilyFarmed has launched a fundraising campaign — titled “Help Us Grow Young Farmers!” — to support the latest expansion of its extensive efforts to train farmers across the United States so they can achieve sustainable success. The campaign, staged on the IndieGoGo crowd-funding site, is titled “Help Us Grow Young Farmers!”

Farm Aid 2015 in Chicago

Photos From Farm Aid 2015 Show The Event Is About the Movement and the Music

As always, the Farm Aid concert held Saturday in Chicago was one of the entertainment events of the year, featuring founders Willie Nelson, Neil Young and John Mellencamp, fellow Board member Dave Matthews, and numerous other great performers. But as this photo essay by Good Food on Every Table shows, Farm Aid is about much more than the music.

Willie Nelson marching in support of family farms

Willie Nelson, Good Food, and Farm Aid’s Chicago Concert

FamilyFarmed and Good Food on Every Table are honored to re-publish, with permission, a column by music legend Willie Nelson about Farm Aid, the organization that advocates for family farmers and is best known for its annual concert that raises money to support those farmers and help them stay on their land.

Farmers Talent Show logo
Greg Wade of Publican Quality Bread
GMO OMG promo

Multi-Faceted Trade Day at Good Food Festival & Conference Captures Movement’s Span

There are so many elements to the Good Food movement that it would be hard for any one event to capture its breadth. But “Trade Day” at FamilyFarmed’s Good Food Festival & Conference March 20 — comes as close as can be to a comprehensive overview of this sweeping effort to change the way we eat for the better.

Julia and Todd McDonald of Peasants' Plot CSA farm in Manteno, Illinois

First Person: CSA Farmers Band Together

by Julia McDonald, guest contributor Julia McDonald and her husband Todd McDonald own Peasants’ Plot, a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farm in Manteno, Illinois that grows produce sustainably and sells it to subscribing consumers. In her contributed column, McDonald describes the rise of the CSA concept and its still yet-to-be-tapped potential; the emergence of the Read more about First Person: CSA Farmers Band Together[…]