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Locally Grown 'Good Food Fest' Returns to NYC

By Della Hasselle | October 6, 2011 9:53am

MEATPACKING DISTRICT — For New Yorkers who eat local foods, the turn of seasons is a reminder of the new harvest — a plethora of pumpkins, apples, cinnamon spices and fall-friendly veggies such as mushrooms squash to munch on.

To celebrate, some community-based companies are putting together the second annual "Good Food Fest" at Gansevoort Plaza this Sunday, a culinary celebration that features locally-sourced food from more than 50 of the area's farmers, chefs and artisinal producers.

"It's really exciting to be among your peers," Lauren Schaefer, a manager at Zampa, a farm-to-chef winebar and kitchen located in Greenwich Village.

"We're all promoting a great cause," Schaefer added, saying it was important to "bring local food to New York City and get people used to eating that way."

For the festival, Zampa, a primarily Italian restaurant, will be serving a wild mushroom lasagna with ricotta cheese. The mushrooms come from Bulich Mushrooms, a farm in the Catskills, and the cheese comes from farms in Vermont.  The greens will come from farms upstate, Schaefer said.

Zampa will be joined by such famous city restaurants as Gramercy Tavern, L'Artusi and BLT Bar and Grill. Other mom-and-pop operations will join, including Long-Island based Horman's Best Pickles, the Meatpacking District's Granola Lab and Greenwich Village's Dirty Bird To Go, a fried chicken joint that also offers fresh chopped salad, kale and cannellinni beans.

Tickets range from $20 for four samples from different chefs up to $75, which gets 20 tastings plus a gift bag.

The day after the festival, the organizers will host a reception with select foods made from locally grown ingredients. Proceeds from both the festival and reception will benefit nonprofit groups FEED Foundation and God's Love We Deliver.

It's "a perfect way to cap a day of eating and support your local food pioneers," a spokesperson said on the site.