Outstanding in the Field

“26 miles across the sea
Santa Catalina is awaitin’ for me
Santa Catalina the island of
Romance, romance, romance, romance…“

– The Four Preps, 1958

Cruising back in the gathering darkness from our secret cove adventure to the bright lights of Avalon harbor, our fellow Slow Foodies sang us home.

The Secret Cove, Catalina Island

Earlier that evening, upon landing at the cove, we shared creative appetizers: roasted beets, Humboldt Fog and satsuma tangerines plus Dungeness crab, fennel and fava beans on toasts, paired with a delicious Sauvignon Blanc from Rusack Vineyards.

Jim Denevan and Captain John, with white seabass

Glasses in hand and toes in the sand, we were welcomed by Outstanding in the Field Founder Jim Denevan, who explained that Outstanding in the Field is a moveable feast and a “restaurant without walls.” Denevan conceived the culinary adventure 11 years ago as a way to “connect eaters to the land and the farmers and artisans that cultivate it.”

120 Slow Foodies gather at the table

We listened as Captain John, Afishionado, described the sustainable fish we were about to enjoy.  Then, anticipating the feast to come, we made our way along the beach to the dinner tables, set for 120, forming a graceful curve along the shore.

Chef Stone, Peg and OITF Founder Jim Denevan.

Celebrity chef Curtis Stone, of “Surfing the Menu” fame, created our farm-to-table dinner from two local fishes and vegetables provided by two mainland SoCal farms, Weiser and McGrath Family Farms.

We began with a salted sea bass soup followed by a bright yellowtail ceviche, an excellent white sea bass with tomato, olives, pepper and capers and medley of roasted vegetables, paired with Rusack Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Dessert was the refreshing “Eaton Mess” – lemon curd, vanilla meringue and fresh berries, perfectly matched with Soul of the Vine dessert wine.

An exceptional evening in a special place…

Sated, we ambled back to our waiting boats as night fell along the quiet beach.

An Outstanding evening – in every way!