Collaborative Garden Serves A Community – Hobart and William Smith Colleges \
The HWS Update

Collaborative Garden Serves A Community

In celebration of National Food Day and their plentiful harvest, the Colleges and several prominent Finger Lakes chefs invited the broader community to the Chefs Share Community Luncheon on Oct. 24 at the First United Methodist Church in Geneva.

Since June, the chefs maintained the 2,400-squared-feet HWS Chef’s Collaborative Garden at HWS’ Fribolin Farm under the leadership of Finger Lakes Institute Food Systems Program Manager Sarah Meyer. The luncheon was their way of continuing their service toward hunger relief and sharing a unique food experience with the broader Geneva community.

“The Chef’s garden has really been meant to invite people to enjoy local food through gardening and cooking. The chefs got out of the kitchen, worked side by side in the garden, and learned how their ingredients grow.” said Meyer.

The 2016 HWS “Chef’s Collaborative Garden” participants included:

  • ​Chef Brud Holland, of FLX Made and Fox Run Vineyard Café, prepared roasted vegetable quiche
  • Chef Carl Bray, of Geneva On The Lake, prepared chicken parmesan, tomato sauce with pasta
  • Chef Orlando Rodriguez, of Veraisons Restaurant at Glenora Wine Cellars, prepared hot tomatillo soup topped with pico de gallo; and
  • Chef Max Bonacci and Mixologist Joe Kennedy, of The Linden Social Club, prepared a berry smoothie beverage and fresh garden salad.

Guest chef and Community Lunch Program volunteer Ardys Otterbacher, of Ventosa Vineyards, participated in the luncheon by preparing a gingerbread carrot cake for dessert.

“Preparing a charitable meal like this is really all about the people and helping our neighbors out. It’s good knowing that we had a role in making them stronger, healthier, and happier today,” said Chef Orlando Rodriguez.

Throughout the 2016 growing season, Meyer and the chefs, with help from farm interns Sarah Garcia ’17 and Felicia Maybee ’17, hosted multiple community events focused on making gardening and cooking local foods more feasible. In addition to hosting a Meet and Greet, multiple cooking demonstrations, and garden tours of HWS Fribolin Farm, the chefs contributed much of their harvest to charitable events supporting hunger relief, such as the Catholic Charities of the Finger Lakes’ Hoe Down for Hunger hosted by Geneva on The Lake and the Healthy Food For All Harvest Dinner at Remembrance Farm in Trumansburg.

Offered in collaboration with the Geneva Community Lunch Program, Catholic Charities of the Finger Lakes, and the Finger Lakes Institute, the Luncheon was part of HWS Food Week, a week-long series of events to encourage awareness of the relationship between food and environment and to celebrate local and sustainable food across the Finger Lakes Region.

To learn more about the HWS Chef’s Collaborative Garden, visit: