ISSUE 30  |  The Summer Kitchen

A Starlit Greenhouse Dinner, Martha’s Vineyard Edition

August 03, 2014 10:00 AM

BY Michelle Slatalla

Spotted on Lizzie Garrett’s Tomboy Style, a communal dinner in a greenhouse at Beetlebung Farm, on the southwestern edge of Martha’s Vineyard.

Beetlebung Farm, a five-acre property in Chilmark, Massachusetts, is the home of Chris Fischer, who grew up there and left to study cooking under such chefs as Mario Batali and Keith McNally in New York, London, and Rome. Now back home, Fischer sells his organic produce (customers have included the Obamas) and hosts communal greenhouse dinners. We must say the experience sounds magical.

Says Lizzie Garrett: “We were served by friendly barefoot hosts on a dirt floor, sitting on wood benches and rusted metal chairs under a roof of stars and a garland of Jerusalem artichoke leaves. The aroma of the farm vegetables lingering with the salty Atlantic air was almost as intoxicating as the burrata, the kale salad served over a fried egg, the sugary sweet perfect tomatoes with squid, the pork tossed with pasta and basil . . .” Read on for the dessert:

Photography by Gabriela Herman for Beetlebung Farm (except where noted).

Above: Chris Fischer, the 12th generation of his family to live on the Vineyard, serves just-grown, fresh-picked food (prepared simply) in a greenhouse transformed into a dining room. Photograph by Lizzie Garrett of Tomboy Style.

Above: Burrata bruschetta. Photograph by Lizzie Garrett of Tomboy Style.

Above: The farm isn’t an official restaurant; dinners are by invitation only. 

Above: Recent greenhouse dinner guests have included actors Maggie Gyllenhaal and Seth Meyers.

Above: A large bluefish stuffed with herbs and grilled over an open fire.

Above: The hoop house is set with a long dining table, mismatched chairs, and flowers from the farm. 

Above: Organic produce under cultivation at Beetlebung Farm.

Above: A shed to keep cold frames warm.

Above: Beetlebung chef Chris Fischer is a descendant of Albert Osborne Fischer, who bought the farm in 1961.

Above: Makeshift lamps and strings of lights. Photograph by Lizzie Garrett of Tomboy Style.

Above: And for dessert? “A buttery slice of cantaloupe,” says Lizzie Garrett. “A simple and perfect dessert.”

For more greenhouse dining ideas, see A Tiny Glass Studio in Barcelona and Into the Field: A Dinner in an Oslo Greenhouse.

Updated from a post originally published July 31, 2013.

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