Pictured left to right: Community Q owner David Roberts, Slow Foods Atlanta founder Julie Shaffer Slow Foods International Secretary General Paolo Di Croce, Love is Love Farm co-owner/farmer Judith Winfrey.
Emory University hosted the Secretary General of Slow Food International, Paolo Di Croce, for a meeting to announce the exploration of uniting city and state Slow Food groups throughout the Southeastern Seaboard into a regional Southeastern Slow Foods group. Slow Food International was founded in 1989 and is a grass roots organization of over 100,000 members worldwide united in their support for good, clean, and fair food and farming practices. Considered by many as the origin of the food to table movement that has seized American restaurants in the past decade, Slow Food is dedicated to uniting farmers, chefs, and people that care about the quality of our food and how it is grown and delivered to the plate.
Paolo's visit to Emory represented a shift in how Slow Food is helping organize their member groups. For the first time, Slow Foods International is working to unite some of their smaller local groups into larger organizations capable of greater reach and influence. Paolo's trip to the US from Italy included stops in Atlanta to organize a Southeastern Slow Food Alliance as well California, where there are a large number of Slow Foods groups. Both regions have strong ties to farming and unique cultural and food histories that made them natural candidates for a experimental program like this regional affiliation.
Community Q has strong ties with local farmers with most of the side item vegetables coming from local farms like Riverview Farm or TaylOrganic Farm. Slow Food values have been part of Community Q's since its inception with Community included right in the name. The restaurant also is a CSA dropoff for Riverview farm's meat and actively participates in local events sponsored by Georgia Organics and the Southern Food Association. Community Q uses all natural pork when the opportunity presents itself but does use commodity pork to satisfy the regular demand. Dave looks forward to the day when all natural, sustainable farms can compete on volume and price with commercial food purveyors.
This gathering was the first opportunity for Paolo to try authentic Georgia BBQ. When asked what he thought about the meal, he said that he "enjoyed the family style meal". He added "this is the ideal way to end two days... eating the real slow food style - slow food style 110%!"
Love is Love Farmer Joe Reynolds obliges us with the classic "gnawing on a rib" shot