Farm-to-Fork Food Invasion

FarmFork-foodinvasionThey’re coming! In just a few weeks, Montgomery is going to be invaded. But it’s not scary. It’s tasty. It’s the 6th annual Farm-to-Fork Food Invasion at Hampstead Farm in Montgomery, and this year’s culinary army is quite impressive, being led by Chef Leo Maurelli, III, Executive Chef at The Hotel at Auburn University and Dixon Conference Center, and Chef Miguel Figueroa, executive chef of A&P Social.

On Thursday, November 5, this event invites guests to grab a seat at one of the long wooden tables to enjoy a family-style outdoor dinner amid the pastoral calm of Hampstead Farms in the shadow of its charming red barn. The setting is appropriate, as most of the ingredients used in the menu are sourced from the adjacent produce beds as well as other Alabama sources, including Evans Meats, Hot Damn Jelly Co. and Murder Point Oysters.

It will be a treat to watch these two chefs leading the culinary charge. The longtime friends, who frequently cut-up when they cook together, will bring a lively camaraderie to the event, and their playful banter plays into their creativity — in a very delicious way.

“Miguel and I go way back,” Chef Leo said. “We mess with each other, and it’s so fun; he’s such a happy-go-lucky-guy. We joke, but we take what we are doing seriously.” Chef Miguel echoed his buddy. “We know each other’s style of cooking so our food blends together really well; we mesh and meld and our food does the same,” he said.

LEAN-FoodInv-pic-peopleNow for the news on the food: The menu is a celebration of both the season’s harvest and the rich abundance of produce, meats and other foods and food products grown and produced in our state, all prepared with a mixture of  Southern, Italian and Latin influences, the latter coming from both chefs’ heritage. The many different offerings, including whole roasted pig with a coffee rub, porchetta, smoked chickens with white barbecue sauce and tons of fresh veggies, will be served family style. “We’ll be cooking some dishes in cast iron right on the fire,” Miguel said, “and we’ll have hay bales set up around the cooking stations so folks can gather and watch us cook.” There’s also going to be a s’mores station as well as plenty of Good People Brewing Company Beer and tasty craft cocktails. Oh, and live music too.

This feast promises to be fabulous (that’s why LEAN is proud to be one of the sponsors!), so get your tickets now before they sell out (as they do every year). Learn more and get tickets at