“Jonathan Rapp, River Tavern’s owner and chef, is well known in the area for his enthusiastic support of local farmers, and his executive chefs, James Wayman and Chris Flahaven, build a daily one-page dinner menu around those farmers’ products.” So writes Stephanie Lyness for the New York Times.
Lyness also notes that an “exceptional tuna tartar exemplified the best” of the tavern’s cuisine: “a large dice of tuna was tossed with chunks of corn kernels and beautifully seasoned with cilantro, sesame oil and soy and presented on a slice of tomato.”
Jonathan Rapp is renowned for his work with the program Dinners at the Farm – an annual “series of benefit dinners celebrating Connecticut’s local farms, food and community as a way to generate awareness of the importance and vitality of our local farming community and the delicious, wholesome and abundant food it provides us.”
The dinners are exquisite affairs – in and around communities like Chester, a quintessential small town of Connecticut. The community’s website suggests it’s “A place to experience old-time New England.” Far from the hustle-bustle of routes 95 or 84, the town and its neighbors nearby exemplify the true generous, cooperative values of small-town living.
Across the country, in the Pacific Northwest, the Herbfarm also takes care to choose the best from farm, forest and sea: “With each visit to The Herbfarm Restaurant, you’ll delight in unique menus showcasing the exceptional foods and wines of the Pacific Northwest. Each 9-course dinner served with 5 or 6 matched wines, draws its inspiration from the rhythms of the seasons.”
Take time to know your food …