← Go back to News & Events

Outstanding in the Field

Posted on July 10, 2011, by millson in

Al Fresco dining at its best!

In early July Millson hosted a unique event at the UBC Farm here in Vancouver. We invited some of the City’s leading design professionals to join us for a farm table dinner. The idea was to recognize and celebrate this amazing group of people for the talent, creativity and vision they have brought to shaping the city that we call home. We worked with the fine folks at Outstanding in the Field to organize the event, who not only made it memorable, but extraordinary.

The evening began around 6PM as the first guests began arriving and were treated to glasses of Gewurztraminer from Nichol Vineyards of the Naramata valley and several sumptuous appetizers including Cucumber and Daylily sorbet soup, Savoury Rosemary and Camembert Parfait and Tarragon Panna Cotta with local organic radishes.

Guests arriving and enjoying the sunshine and first tastes


UBC Farm provided the perfect natural setting for the event


Cucumber and Daylily sorbet soup


Savoury Rosemary and Camembert Parfait


Tarragon Panna Cotta with local organic radishes

After everyone had a chance to mingle, reconnect with old friends and take in the simple elegance of this natural farm setting, it was time for a brief presentation by Jim Denevan, founder of Outstanding in the Field, and his right hand, Katy Oursler (click here to learn more about Jim’s amazing artwork).

Jim Denevan & Katy Oursler welcome guests

Jim and Katy spoke about the work they are doing travelling the world feeding people and reconnecting them to the importance of understanding how our food choices impact the environment. It’s hard to explain it any better than they do themselves, so here’s a snippet straight from the source and a link for you to explore.

Our mission is to re-connect diners to the land and the origins of their food, and to honor the local farmers and food artisans who cultivate it.

Outstanding in the Field is a roving culinary adventure – literally a restaurant without walls. Since 1999 we have set the long table at farms or gardens, on mountain tops or in sea caves, on islands or at ranches. Occasionally the table is set indoors: a beautiful refurbished barn, a cool greenhouse or a stately museum. Wherever the location, the consistent theme of each dinner is to honor the people whose good work brings nourishment to the table.

Ingredients for the meal are almost all local (sometimes sourced within inches of your seat at the table!) and generally prepared by a celebrated chef of the region. After a tour of the site, we all settle in: farmers, producers, culinary artisans, and diners sharing the long table.

Outstanding in the Field

Next it was time for Mark Bomford and his team at UBC Farm to take everyone on a short tour and share information on the important research they are doing on everything from Honey Bee survival, to natural pest control in agriculture, to the best ways to raise healthy chickens in urban environments. The work they are doing is amazing and if you have a chance, you really should visit the farm and experience it for yourself. You can learn more about UBC farm here.

Mark Bomford explains the ongoing bee research at UBC Farm


Busy bees


Our group tours the farm and it’s many research programs


Research is ongoing on hundreds of plant varieties


A sample of the 100’s of Apple species under study at the farm


We get up close and personal with a few feathered friends


Our tour complete, we head to the farm table for dinner

Armed with new understanding and respect for the food we were about to enjoy, it was time for dinner. The single long table in the field created the perfect setting, connecting everyone to each other and to the farm itself.

Guests find their places at the table

Chef Andrea Carlson of Bishop’s Restaurant in Vancouver and her team crafted a simply stunning meal created from simple, fresh, local and organic ingredients. We were treated to a wide variety of local treasure from not just UBC Farm, but other local purveyors including Glorious Organics, Nichol Vineyards, SOLEfood Farm, 24 Carrots Co. and Hazelmere Organic Farms.

Chef Andrea Carlson and a member of her team


The first course

Our first course was Poached Biodynamic Eggs with a Buckwheat & Sunflower Sprout Salad, young green peas, UBC Farm herbs, SOLEfood radishes, seedy crisps and apple cider vinaigrette perfectly paired with a 2010 Gewürztraminer from Nichol Vineyards. In a word…..  amazing!

Course number two

Next up…. Ricotta Squash Blossoms with Spotted Shrimp, black garlic puree, pickled UBC Farm purslane, garlic scapes, currants & Glorious Organics fava tips this time paired with a unique orange, yes orange, Pinot Gris. Truly inspired.

The main course is served

For the main course……Slow BBQ’d Fraser Valley Lamb Shoulder and Glorious leeks with hazelnut romesco, SOLEfood spinach, roasted UBC Farm sora radish & warba potatoes, this time paired with an amazing 2008 Cab Franc.

A beautiful vegetarian option

And for our guests who prefer something other than meat, Chef Carlson created individual dishes more suited to the vegetarian pallet such as this red quinoa with morel mushrooms. Wow.


Everyone agreed that the Nootka Rose & Strawberry Ice Cream Bar with fresh roasted Hazelmere Farms strawberries was indeed the absolute perfect finish to a perfect meal.

We were so pleased to be able to provide an opportunity recognize and celebrate the work of so many talented professionals in our local design community. It was a chance for everyone to step away, revel in the beauty of Vancouver, and enjoy themselves in this perfectly natural and sensuous setting.

Celebrations continued well into the night

We’d like to again thank everyone who attended, and all who helped make the event such a success. For more information on any of the contributors to this event, please feel free to click on the links below.


Millson Technologies
UBC Farm
Outstanding in the Field
Jim Denevan
Nichol Vineyards
24 Carrots Co.
Glorious Organics
Hazelmere Farms