John Andrews Farmhouse celebrates 25 years

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SOUTH EGREMONT >> Chef-owner Dan Smith of John Andrews Farmhouse Restaurant will commemorate 25 years in business this year.

Known as the "architect of modern Berkshire cooking," as coined by Travel & Leisure magazine back in 2004, Smith is well known for his dedication to local food. Since May of 1990, Smith has been creating seasonal cuisine at John Andrews Farmhouse and will honor this silver anniversary with a series of special events including a Sous Chef Dinner, an Italian Wine Dinner, a solo dinner at the James Beard Foundation and a celebration week highlighting 25 Classics for 25 Years.

Smith's longstanding connection to local food is the starting point for his menus. He purchases from more than 50 farms in the Berkshires, Hudson Valley and Connecticut for his 73-seat restaurant. In addition to his long-term partnerships with regional farms and food producers, Smith created his own garden on the property, which supplies additional produce for the restaurant in season.

In 2013, Smith's restaurant was named World's 25 Best Farmstead Experiences by The Daily Meal. John Andrews has also been awarded the Trip Advisor Certificate of Excellence and the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence.

"Where has the time gone?" said Smith in a press release. "It's been an exciting adventure reaching 25 years in the industry with all of our ups and downs. Seasonal cooking in the Berkshires will always be inspiring to me; working closely with farmers and local producers in the region has always been an honor. I can't imagine doing what I do anywhere else."

To celebrate 25 years, Smith will be hosting a series of dining events in the coming months:

Vietti Vineyards Wine Dinner

On Thursday, April 16, John Andrews Farmhouse will present a four-course prix fixe wine dinner featuring Italian regional dishes and Piedmont-based Vietti wine pairings with each course. Special guest Kate Cassidy from Della Terra Winery Direct, an importer of fine Italian wines and exclusive distributor of Vietti, will be speaking throughout the dinner. The evening will begin at 6 p.m. with a cocktail hour and stationary hors d'oeuvres followed by dinner at 7 p.m.

The prix fixe cost per person for the hors d'oeuvres plus four-course meal is $85 including wine pairings with each course. The evening will be co-sponsored by MS Walker and Guido's Fresh Marketplace in Great Barrington where Vietti wines will be available for purchase. Reservations are highly recommended.

James Beard Dinner

Smith will present "Beltane in the Berkshires" — his first solo dinner at the James Beard Foundation in New York City — on Tuesday, April 28. Smith has been a member of the James Beard Foundation for five years and since 2010, he has been presenting dinners with a team of chefs from the Berkshires. This past March was his fifth year presenting with the group and he will return again this November.

The evening will begin at 7 p.m. with a cocktail reception in the Greenhouse Gallery. A seated tasting menu will begin around 8 p.m. The price is $130 per person for James Beard Foundation members and $170 per person for the general public. The James Beard House is located at 167 West 12th Street in New York City. For reservations, call 212-627-2308.

25 Classics for 25 Years Week

For one week beginning on Mother's Day, May 10, John Andrews Farmhouse will offer 25 Classics for 25 Years — a collection of guest favorites since 1990.

A few dishes on the current menu will remain on offer as they have been classics since the early days and are highly popular with regular guests. Classics will include plates such as Tuna-and-Crabmeat Wonton; Seared Steak Salad; Warm Mozzarella wrapped with Proscuitto, Mesclun and Balsamic Vinaigrette; and Tuna Tartare, Avocado and Cucumber. Entrees will feature Bass Hot Pot; Mom's Meatloaf; Wheat Berry and Wild Rice Risotto; and Cumin Roast Chicken, Black Bean Cake and Tomatillo Salsa. Dessert stars such as Chocolate Hazelnut Whiskey Torte, Housemade Espresso Ice Cream and Crème Caramel will sweeten up the menu offerings for this special week of dining. The final menu will be posted on John Andrews' Facebook page closer to the date.


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