Rogue Valley Convivium entering 4th year

We were pleased to see the backpage article in the May 22 edition of the Tidings focusing on the international Slow Food Movement and the events in San Francisco. We want all local readers to know that there is a Rogue Valley Convivium, which is entering its fourth year. Our focus is to lead the Rogue Valley community in advancing the understanding and enjoyment of foods that are culturally and ecologically restorative to our region.

During the year we hold events that celebrate the unique bounty of locally produced foods in our area. This included a four-wheel jaunt into the hills to forage morels. We hauled our prize back to town to the Global Pantry kitchen where we all pitched in and created a fabulous feast of phyllo pies filled with wild greens, morels, our local award-winning Crater Lake Blue Cheese, morel risotto finished with Rogue Creamery cheddar, salad from Fry Family Farm, brick-oven bread and upside-down cake made with preserved "drunken" figs. Of course, there was plenty of local wine to enjoy as well.

We also held our second-annual picnic at the beautiful JRL Ranch in Butte Falls, where the owners rotate their stock through a series of fields to produce excellent, sustainably raised grass-fed beef. The event was done in conjunction with the Rogue Appellation Garagistes Society, which has members from some of our smaller boutique wineries.

Other events have included a Harvest Dinner at Roxy Ann Winery and an outdoor feast of locally pastured spring lamb roasted whole on a spit. We have also explored brick-oven pizza-making and learned more about the rigors of organic farming.

So far, our events have been for around 50 people with growth primarily by word of mouth. We are investigating worthy causes to support that fit our goals and hoping more members of our rather large convivium will continue to come forward to help with planning and executing other projects.

To find out more about joining the Slow Food Movement or becoming a member of our convivium, go to .

Sarah Powell

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