Rustic tables strewn with antique vessels brimming with peachy pink dahlias and surrounded by fields of tidy rows of the season’s bounty is the setting I find myself in this past September. “It’s as if we are dining in a Monet painting,” a friend says of this magical farm-to-table experience at the eight-acre Chatham Bars Inn Farm in Brewster, Massachusetts.
A crisp French Sauvignon Blanc and a smooth Oregon Pinot Noir flow freely at this jovial dinner party under an early fall evening’s sky. The dinner is hosted by Chatham Bars Inn executive chef Andrew Chadwick, who recently returned to the luxury seaside resort after a hiatus—honing his craft at other gastronomic establishments on the Eastern seaboard. He and his culinary team curate an assortment of menus for the 16 dinners offered throughout the summer and fall seasons.
Each week’s dinner highlights the organic farm’s seasonal crops with produce harvested that day by the farm team, accompanied by locally sourced meats and seafood, creating the quintessential farm-to-table experience. This night, the bucolic setting and family-style dining experience begins with an assortment of crudité with dips, such as house-made hummus and dill yogurt, and hearty fresh baked brown breads accompanied by sweet, whipped butter. Earthenware platters arrive at the table next, filled with smoked eggplant, fire-roasted pepper coulis, baba ghanoush, and seasoned with the farm’s aromatic herbs. We all serve ourselves generous helpings of this flavorful dish as the sun begins to dip lower, turning the pale blue sky to cotton candy pink.
Next, roasted chicken and mushroom bread pudding with roasted tomatoes and wilted farm greens appear. The meat falls off the bone—so tender and flavorful. The mushroom bread pudding is the perfect pairing with the poultry. As we indulge in this shared feast, the sky turns to a shade of amber and slowly melts behind the west-facing fields.
The fourth course arrives—braised beef cheeks. Tender, and with just the right amount of seasoning, the beef’s pairing with a crunchy cucumber slaw and creamy polenta is a harmonious combination. The bright orange orb fades from sight and the first stars come out. For the finale, a spiced pound cake with stewed plums is set before us. Sweet, tart, and moist, it is exceptional and reminds me of being an exchange student in Germany where Frau Gundermann would serve homemade “pflaumenkuchen” on Friday nights.
As the conversation and wine continue to flow, I look up to see Venus and the Big Dipper in plain view. As the evening comes to a close, I am so grateful to the chef and the farmers and Mother Nature for creating such a magical event surrounded by old friends and new all set in a Monet-like world.
The Farm Dinner series runs through October 4. Later in the month, dinners will be held in the glass greenhouse decorated with colorful seasonal florals from October 21 through November 11.
Greenhouse Dinner Series at Chatham Bars Inn Farm
October 21, Pig & Whiskey Dinner
October 28, Fall Harvest Wine Dinner
November 4, Mycology Wine Dinner
November 11, Pig & Whiskey Dinner
Where to Stay
The historic Chatham Bars Inn is an unparalleled resort experience on the Cape. With a private beach, pool, nearby golf course, spa, and, of course, five-star dining experiences.