Farm to table – the movement started arguably over 40 years ago when Chef and food activist Alice Waters opened Chez Panisse in Berkeley. Her cooking philosophy: nothing but the freshest, seasonal organic ingredients that are produced sustainably and locally. Food free from herbicides and pesticides is essential for both taste and our health as well as the health of the environment and local communities. More and more restaurants and chefs around the country have embraced the idea of farm to table, as has our own Ojai Valley Community Hospital… only in the hospital’s case, its farm to hospital tray.
Built in 1960, the hospital oversees more than 35,000 valley residents providing in and outpatient care, as well as a 24 hour emergency room. Chief Administrative Officer, Haady Lashkari’s philosophy is to make the hospital a welcoming place. Keeping in line with that, the hospital has recently partnered with local farmers Rio Gozo Farms, Friend’s Ranches and The Berry Man to incorporate locally grown, organic food into its menu items whenever it can.
Kim Lisi, Director of Food & Nutrition Services for the hospital and Head Chef Jose Martinez and his staff are dedicated to serving high quality, healthful, appealing meals for both patient and staff. Being involved in Taste of Ojai gives them the opportunity to share their culinary flair with the community.
As you’re tasting you way across the 10th green, don’t forget the hospital’s table. This year Chef Martinez will offer seared fish tacos. As Kim says… “Every year, what we serve gets better and better. Stop by and find out for yourself!”
By: Ilona Saari
Ojai Valley Community Hospital
1306 Maricopa Highway
Ojai, California 93023