Food for Thought Festival
The coming week, in events that get to your heart through your stomach.
Tuesday, September 22
Everybody has to have a hungry heart this week in Madison, with plenty of events leading up to the big initiative, the good folks over at the Ebling Library in the UW Health Sciences Learning Center have put together It's Good For You! 100 Years of the Art & Science of Eating, an exhibit that draws from the collections of libraries across campus. Learn more about history of the food pyramid, the story of WWII Victory Gardens, the confusion inherent in diet advice (you said it), the "voice of authority" in cookbooks and more! It opens today, and yes -- there will be food at the opening reception. We hear you should sample some of the brownies -- and disregard your diet. Dandelion Food Cart, which usually parks on Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. around the corner from Starbuck's, is previewing its new food items for next year's menu this week only. Open from 11 a.m.-1:30 p.m.on Tuesday through Thursday.
Wednesday, Sept. 23
If you give more thought to the meat you eat than the seafood, take a look at the Sustainable Seafood class at Whole Foods, 3313 University Ave, 6-8:30 p.m., $25.
Thursday, September 24
Journalist "In Defense of Food: The Omnivore's Solution" at the Kohl Center tonight as part of the Humanities Without Boundaries program at the UW-Madison. The last time we saw Pollan speak, it was in cramped quarters in the now-closed Canterbury Booksellers, which won his coveted appearance in a contest, through Tara Mathison's clever window displays. Though this venue is larger, expect Pollan to be just as charming and provocative. Kohl Center, 7 p.m., free.
Sweet Relief a benefit for with a wine, hors d'oeuvres and chocolate tasting tonight. The chocolates are from local Porchlight industries. Bunky's, 5-8 p.m., $15. Call 608- 257-2534 ext. 20 for more info.
Friday, September 25
Michael Pollan takes the stage once again during his visit to town, joining in the "In Defense of Food" panel discussion with UW-Madison alumni and faculty. Other panelists include journalist and UW Health science writer Susan Lampert Smith, who co-owns owner John Vrieze. The panel will discuss Pollan's book as the culmination of the Go Big Read program. Wisconsin Union Theater, 3:30 p.m., free.
Saturday, September 26
The biggest deal in food today, maybe even for the whole month, maybe for the whole year, is the Food For Thought Festival. This, the 11th annual shindig devoted to sustainable food practices, is bigger than ever, with a local food court, artisan cheeses and lots, lots more. Capitol Square at Martin Luther King Blvd., 8 a.m.-1:30 p.m., free. Michael Pollan speaks at 10 a.m.
The festival will be followed by "An Evening with Michael Pollan", a five-course seasonal dinner featuring foods from farms around southern Wisconsin. It is a benefit for CHOW, a farm-to-school homegrown lunch program for Sherman Middle School. L'Etoile, 7:30 p.m., $200. The dinner will be preceded by a reception at 6 p.m. in the Madison Children's Museum. Call 251-0500 for more information.
Cap off this food-focused day with a screening of Willy Street Co-op, 8:30 p.m., free.
Sunday, September 27
Here's your chance to work for your supper -- okay, dessert. The Lendved Homestead Pumpkin Pie ride, a 60-mile excursion to eat homemade pumpkin pie out in the beautiful southern Wisconsin countryside. There are shorter ride options, too. Lakeview Park, Middleton, 9 a.m. Call 215-4514 for more info.
The Facebook group. The challenge runs through Sunday, October 4.