Origins of the Farm-to-Table Movement, By Tony Ehinger

The term “farm-to-table” has become fairly ubiquitous in the modern restaurant lexicon. However, a considerable percentage of self-professed foodies know very little about how the movement actually began.

Aside from Alice Waters and all of the other chefs who have utilized responsibly sourced meat and produce in their cooking for decades, Kimbal Musk and Hugo Matheson deserve a great deal of credit for promoting the farm-to-table concept here in the United States. A veteran of the high technology sector, Musk transitioned into a new career after graduating from New York’s French Culinary Institute in 2001. He met English-born chef Matheson shortly thereafter in Boulder, Colorado. Together, the two men planted the seeds for a major shift in America’s food culture when they opened The Kitchen, a neighborhood dining spot that featured locally grown ingredients as the most important elements of a rustic yet refined menu. The business model caught on, positioning Musk and Matheson as poster boys for farm-to-table dining.

About the Author

Tony Ehinger is a former Co-Head of Global Securities at Credit Suisse. Now retired and living in Manhattan with his wife, he ardently supports the farm-to-table movement.

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