asparagusOn a warm and sunny day in Spring I had the opportunity to have the freshest asparagus known to man. This asparagus was picked right from the warm fertile soil and was so juicy you could practically squeeze it into a glass.

I was at The Wells Family Farm on the North Fork of Long Island New York. The Wells farm has been in operation since 1661. Reportedly one of the oldest farms in the United States. Our tour was lead by Lyle Wells who is an 11th generation owner.

Lyle explained to us that the 75 acres of asparagus had to be gone over every day for about a month in order to harvest the stalks at just the right ripeness. He told us that the task had recently been made easier since they had acquired a new tractor specifically made for harvesting asparagus. On the new equipment the operator would lie facedown and cut the asparagus stalks in front of him. He told us this was considerably easier than the old way where the operator would have to reach down between their legs to cut the stalks as the tractor moved up and down the rows of asparagus.

To me the field looked like an alien landscape, with various size antennas sticking up somewhat randomly from the dirt.

Our team from my company, The CulinArt Group, consisted of Chef Peter Klein, Director of Culinary Development, Rachel Frank, Director of Health and Wellness.

Kim Hoban, RD, Culinary Nutritionist, and Rachel Prowler, Associate Director of Culinary Development. One of the goals of our tour was to meet farmers that we could specifically partner with, and serve their produce, in our CulinArt Cafes. Now when we do a local asparagus promotion next year we will have specific pictures of the farm and personal stories to tell about the farmer and his crops.

Asparagus is such a wonderful vegetable. Fresh local asparagus signals to me and many other people that summer produce is right around the corner and I love the taste and ease of its preparation.

Tweet about this on TwitterPin on PinterestShare on Facebook