CORVALLIS — Oct. 24 marks the beginning of the second annual Local Eats Week in Corvallis, as well as a week-long celebration of all food that’s locally grown.
Local Eats Week is a project of the Corvallis Sustainability Coalition’s Food Action Team, which has been working toward promoting locally grown food within the community since 2008. The Food Action Team’s goal is to have 60 percent of the food consumed in Corvallis be from a local source. Right now, Corvallis’s food consumption consists of about 7 percent local food, making 60 percent a heavy, but still achievable goal — especially since local consumption was only at 2 percent three years ago.
As one way to promote locally grown food, the Food Action Team created Local Eats Week. The event is also a way to represent the 13 restaurants around Corvallis that have signed on to be a part of Corvallis Local 6 and serve at least one daily menu item that features local ingredients from within the six counties around Corvallis.
“The idea is to generate a lot more interest in the Local 6 restaurants and to get people more aware of what we’re doing and to celebrate local food,” said Emily Stimac, Food Action Team leader and marketing director for First Alternative Co-op.
Along the way, Stimac also hopes that Local Eats Week particpants can “gain an additional awareness of what local food is available and how amazingly delicious it is to choose local.”
In celebration of Local Eats Week, from Oct. 24 through Oct. 30, Local 6 restaurants will be offering $6 sample plates created from all local ingredients. From rich butternut squash tacos to tender lamb smothered in a spicy achiote sauce, there is sure to be something to tickle everyone’s tastebuds.
“It’s all going to be pretty much delicious,” Stimac said.
But the local food movement doesn’t stop with Local Eats Week. The Corvallis Sustainability Coalition and the Food Action team are working all year round to promote local food, constantly working for that 60 percent.
“One thing we’re going to be looking at pretty soon is how to take it to the next step beyond this intimate 13 restaurants,” Stimac said. “What does it look like when the community does reach 60 percent? What would that look like and how do we get there from here? That’s our next big goal.”
Local Eats Week also corresponds with Food Day, on Oct. 24, which is a national effort promoting healthy, sustainable eating. For more information about Food Day, see http://foodday.org.
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A sneak peek at some tasty plates:
First Alternative Co-op (North and South) — Lamb with achiote sauce, creamy calabacitas with queso fresco, and Spanish rice
Le Patissier — Beef, chicken or cheese and spinach empanadas, and a small salad
Cirello’s Pizza — Pizza with a choice of two Local 6 toppings: basil pesto, mozzarella and garlic; Afton meatballs and mushrooms; olive oil, basil pesto and sundried tomato-olive pesto
Nearly Normal’s — Roasted butternut squash taco with kale and feta, and rice and beans
Coffee Culture — Grilled sandwich with apples from Monmouth, aged Willamette Valley farmstead cheddar, spinach, red onions and honey dijon on artisan bread
Magenta — Chef Kimber will surprise you!
Block 15 — Grilled vegetable spinach salad with sweet onions, peppers, radicchio and a stout-hazelnut viniagrette
Big River and Eat & Drink 101 — Butternut squash croquettes with sweet potato ketchup
Bombs Away — Mini quesadilla with Alsea Acre goat cheese and sauteed vegetables, served with a house-made ranchero sauce
Cloud 9 and Downward Dog — PepperTree sausage corn dog with butternut squash ketchup
Fireworks — Chanterelle mushroom pizzette with grilled leeks, winter squash and blue cheese