Chow Town

Slow Food KC dedicates Arc of Taste Garden at Somerset Ridge Vineyard and Winery

Members of Slow Food Kansas City met at Somerset Ridge Vineyard and Winery Saturday for the dedication, groundbreaking and planting of two plots donated and prepared by Cindy and Dennis Reynolds.

The garden planted at the winery in Miami County near Paola, Kan., includes Arc of Taste Cherokee Purple, Amish Paste and Suddeth Strain Brandywine tomatoes as well as Jimmy Nardello Italian Frying Peppers.

In the “Three Sisters” plot, Hidatsa Shield Figure Beans and Sibley Squash along with local Kansas Corn was planted.

This summer, Slow Food Kansas City members and chefs will offer cooking demonstrations and discussions in the Arc of Taste Garden using the vegetables grown.

What is Arc of Taste? Here’s a quick look at what it takes to be on the Ark of Taste list provided by Slow Food USA:


Produced in limited quantities, these foods will not be around in another generation or two without immediate action. Risk factors may be biological, commercial, or cultural.


Whether an animal breed, baked treat, fruit, spice, grain or beverage these foods are prized by those who eat them for their special taste.


No engineered foods here. These foods are linked to the place and the community that protects them. Everything on the Ark of Taste has the potential to be grown, raised or produced without harm to the environment.


To keep these foods’ traditions alive takes many hands. No commercial or trademarked items are allowed on the Ark of Taste, only foods that anyone may champion, produce, share or sell.


Foods on the Ark of Taste are, of course, a bit difficult to find. Keep on the look out for sources to support, or grow and make them your self. Here are some resources to help you “Eat it to save it!”


If you want to make your vegetable garden a refuge for food biodiversity, get Ark of Taste seeds for $5 per package from Somerset Ridge Vineyard and Winery where all the profits will be donated to Slow Food Kansas City.

And so my friends, slow down and enjoy local foods this summer grown in Slow Food’s Arc of Taste Garden and help support endangered foods.

To become a member of Slow Food USA and support the Ark of Taste at the national and international level,

print the

membership application

and mail the completed form with a check to:

Slow Food Kansas City

Attn: Ms. Sarah Reed

3301 Windsor Ave.

Kansas City, MO 64123-1136

Individual membership costs $60 while family membership costs $100.

Chef Jasper J. Mirabile Jr. of Jasper’s commands the helm of his family’s 59-year-old restaurant, consistently rated one of Kansas City’s best Italian restaurants. In addition to running the restaurant with his brother, Mirabile is a culinary instructor, founding member of Slow Food Kansas City and a national board member of the American Institute of Wine and Food. He hosts many famous chefs on his weekly radio show Live! From Jasper’s Kitchen on KCMO 710 AM and 103.7 FM and sells a line of dressings and sauces.

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