The Berkshires Blog

October 2014 TasteBerkshires Spotlight

Featured Chef: Nicholas Moulton of Mezze Bistro + Bar

NicholasProducing simple food that is bright and full of life, Nicholas Moulton is an accomplished chef who executes a seasonal menu highlighting local foods from farms and food producers in the Berkshire region. New to the Mezze Bistro + Bar menu is a wider offering of smaller plates with an emphasis on plant-based foods and wild ingredients that grow in the Berkshires. A graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, Nick is dedicated to the nose-to-tail philosophy and is involved in the harvesting and butchering of ingredients for the restaurant’s menu. As a chef focused on regional cuisine, he believes in supporting sustainable agriculture and holds a strong commitment to building awareness of the region’s terroir, part of the growing mission of Mezze Restaurant Group.

Photo Credit: Angela Cardinali

Featured Farm: Sweet Brook Farm

Untitled-1Nestled in the Northern Berkshires, Sweet Brook Farm is owned and operated by the Phelps family. This farm is a beautiful place which provides a healthy, local food source and education to the community. Currently, the farm is home to a growing herd of alpacas which they are raising for their beautiful yarns and ultrawarm, ultrasoft garments. This farm also produces maple syrup from its new state-of-the-art sugar house. Stop by to visit the farm store or shop online. During the warmer months you can enjoy hay rides at the farm and once the snow has fallen stop by for one of their sleigh rides.

Featured Product: Baldwin Pure Vanilla Extract @ Charles H. Baldwin & Sons

VanillaThe Baldwin family has been making their extracts for over 125 years. The vanilla bean is actually the fruit of a tropical orchid.  Baldwin’s Pure Vanilla Extract uses only the best, most flavorful and most expensive variety of bean – the Bourbon Vanilla Bean from Madagascar.  The aging in our over 100-year-old oak barrels mellows and intensifies the extract, making a stronger, darker, richer and more flavorful product.  These barrels are invaluable to the flavoring process.  They have been seasoned over several generations and continue to improve with each and every new batch.  The ingredients and aging process which add so much to the character of Baldwin’s Vanilla cannot be duplicated by industrial mass producers.