Eat Drink Local Profile #1: Quail Hill Farm

Quail Hill just pulled 15,000 bulbs of heirloom garlic out of the ground. Some of it will be sold at Sotheby’s this fall.

From September 26th to October 6th Edible Manhattan, Edible East End and Edible Brooklyn — in conjunction with Edibles statewide and GrowNYC — present Eat Drink Local week, our celebration of the local food chain through heirloom vegetable auctions, wine tastings, DIY challenges, lectures, garden tours, farm to table dinners and countless other events. Over the next few weeks we’re highlighting a few of the restaurants, wine shops and wineries, breweries and beer bars, farms and food artisans and cultural institutions that the week is meant to celebrate.

The Farm:

Quail Hill Farm

What They Do:

This  100+ acre Amagansett farm is a pioneer in many ways. First, it’s one of the oldest organic farms in New York State. Second, it was the first community farm to be owned and operated by a land trust, the Peconic Land Trust. And, third, poet-farmer Scott Chaskey, as director of the Northeast Organic Farmers Association for New York, has challenged national organic standards and expanded the definition of community farm to include all sorts of activism, on-farm research and endless educational programs run by the farms staff, apprentices and generous members.

Why We Love Them:

Right now, we are most in love with their pungent garlic, a mix of German White and Music dubbed Amagansett Peach for its blush, which is  grown from seed garlic that has been saved continuously on the farm for nearly 15 years, stored in a barn after the summer harvest and then planted in the fall. They have just pulled nearly 15,000 bulbs, which have started showing up at the Sag Harbor farmers market, a few restaurants and the Quail Hill stand. This garlic will be cured over the next 2 months and then braided and stored for farm members to work into soups, stirfries and other scrumptiousness all winter long.

Where to Find Them:

The farm and farm stand are on Side Hill Lane in Amagansett. They also sell at the Sag Harbor Farmers Market, and the garlic, and more than 275 varieties of produce, herbs and flowers the farm grows, also end up on the tables of Nick & Toni’s in East Hampton (where Quail Hill manages a kitchen garden), the Ross School cafeteria in Bridgehampton and other choice locations. Sample the produce at a few Peconic Land Trust fundraisers in August as well, including Through Farms and Fields on August 1. Finally, Quail Hill will be auctioning off a few choice braids of Amagansett Peach garlic at the Art of Farming heirloom veggie auction at Sotheby’s this September. We hear that Eli Zabar and a few allium-minded chefs are already jockeying for it.

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Brian is the editor at large of Edible East End, Edible Long Island, Edible Manhattan and Edible Brooklyn. He writes from his home in Sag Harbor, New York, where he and his family tend a home garden and oysters. He is also obsessed with ducks, donuts and dumplings.