• Monday , 20 November 2017

Gone Country: Cruising to Chef Jose Garces’ Luna Farm for Summer BBQ

by Cassie Hepler

Yes, we know… You hate driving long distances out of the city into the country. So we did it for you!

After about an hour of driving, we parked at Palisades Middle School (4710 Durham Rd, Kintnersville, PA 18930) that provided yellow school bus shuttles (not the short bus) to Luna Farm as parking at the farm would have been packed. Upon arrival, port-a-potties awaited those who took the hour-long drive from the city and 20 minute bus ride. And although no one actually likes using them, they were some of the cleanest around!

This was the second annual Garces Foundation Summer Barbecue at Chef Garces’ Luna Farm in Ottsville, Bucks County, Pa. on Sunday, June 7 from 1-4 p.m. Tickets were $75 per person, $30 for children (ages 5-12), free for children under 5 and a 30% discount for Young Friends members.

The local barbecue lunch provided tasty bbq eats by Garces Catering, Fat Jack’s BBQ, owwowcow creamery, Rosati Water Ice and other area restaurateurs. Musicians American Deluxe with Clay Sears and Matt Cappy kept the funk flowing with an eclectic mix of smooth sounds, soul and ending with some sweet cooing of Prince.

The Luna Farm tour took off every 30 minutes and fearless groups toured Chef Jose Garces’ farm through mowed paths winding through the woods behind his summer home. This may have been what was considered the “guided hiking trails” which were a 20 minute walk around the 40 acre property. Some not-too-outdoorsy folks left the group when the words “poison ivy” and “ticks” were mentioned by the fearless tour guide.

Tito’s Handmade Vodka had a stellar idea for the vodka infusion workshop, providing fresh fruit, herbs and veggies to put inside mason jars. Let it sit a couple weeks, pop a straw in… haha just kidding. Mix with tonic water or something refreshing and viola! An organic, tasty “homemade” vodka without all the mess.

Refreshing Fiji water with straws poked inside caps, beer (including cider), wine (and sangrias), specialty cocktails (a Chaddsford Winery niagartia – a new kind of stiff, delicious addiction) and (spiked) lemonade.

Near the green house, there were make-and-take herb seed plantings, including basil and mint. Meanwhile, Chef Garces was signing copies of his cook books, The Latin Road Home and Latin Evolution.

A very family friendly occasion, there was a moon bounce and lawn games for kids – and playful (or perhaps tipsy) parents. We only wished it lasted longer and with a pool party to cool sizzling summer skin!

For more information, visit www.garcesfoundation.org.

Tents give some shade in the bright sunshine at Jose Garces Luna Farm BBQ.

Tents give some shade in the bright sunshine at Jose Garces Luna Farm BBQ.

This goat seemed done for the day as some children screamed and pointed at it.

This goat seemed done for the day as some children screamed and pointed at it.

Luna Farm looks so far away but wasn't at all.

Luna Farm looks so far away but wasn’t at all.

And maybe even pose on tree roots.

Our tour guide liked climbing on tree roots.

He also liked to climb tree roots.

He also liked to climb tree roots.

The tour guide loved to climb every tree in sight.

The tour guide loved to climb every tree in sight.

Unless there's bees in them, then don't.

Unless there’s bees in them, then don’t smell the flowers.

Always stop and smell the flowers.

Always stop and smell the flowers.

Follow the ... green grass road?

Follow the … green grass road?

He also explained how one simple plant is much more potent than coffee.

He also explained how one simple plant is much more potent than coffee.

The tour guide was showing guests which plant to rub on before and after being exposed to poison ivy.

The tour guide was showing guests which plant to rub on before and after being exposed to poison ivy.

This is the exact opposite of the city, which sometimes is what you need.

This is the exact opposite of the city, which sometimes is what you need.

Cornhole is up next while waiting for the farm tour.

Cornhole is up next while waiting for the farm tour.

Chuck from Bucks County Apiaries shows guests some honeycomb that formed an almost artistic shape.

Chuck from Bucks County Apiaries shows guests some honeycomb that formed an almost artistic shape.

Chuck from Bucks County Apiaries explains to guests where the queen may be hidden in the hive.

Chuck from Bucks County Apiaries explains to guests where the queen may be hidden in the hive.

A smoker, to move the bees around without making them angry.

A smoker, to move the bees around without making them angry.

Bucks County Apiaries truly loves their bees - and the country life.

Bucks County Apiaries truly loves their bees – and the country life.

Chuck from Bucks County Apiaries tells tales of saving cows.

Chuck from Bucks County Apiaries tells tales of saving cows.

The greenhouse where a lot of produce magic happens for Jose Garces.

The greenhouse where a lot of produce magic happens for Jose Garces.

To the left sits a country pickup truck which beckons.

To the left sits a country pickup truck which beckons.

If the tent didn't strike your fancy, there was tree shade available too.

If the tent didn’t strike your fancy, there was tree shade available too.

A view of the back of Luna Farm.

A view of the back of Luna Farm.

Never usually a fan of cider, this Strongbow with honey was refreshing and delicious and not too sweet.

Never usually a fan of cider, this Strongbow with honey was refreshing and delicious and not too sweet.

So savory and smooth, you wouldn't know it went bah once.

So savory and smooth, you wouldn’t know it went bah once.

Chef strikes a cheesy pose. The deal was photo for samples!

Chef strikes a cheesy pose. The deal was photo for samples!

Waiting for a taste is torture.

Waiting for a taste is torture.

Garces Events shows they know how to cook a mean BBQ goat.

Garces Events shows they know how to cook a mean BBQ goat.

Where the magic happens, inside this roasting box.

Where the magic happens, inside this roasting box.

A goat's leg peeks out of the banana leaves.

A goat’s leg peeks out of the banana leaves.

After being encased in a metal top with some water, the cheese is perfectly melted.

After being encased in a metal top with some water, the cheese is perfectly melted.

Sliding onto the bun with cheese perfectly melted.

Sliding onto the bun with cheese perfectly melted.

And a perfect burger is made - and eating in record time.

And a perfect burger is made – and eating in record time.

A view of the refreshing, tempting pool and fire pit.

A view of the refreshing, tempting pool and fire pit.

A condiment table fit for any chef waited to pile on top of the burgers and dogs.

A condiment table fit for any chef waited to pile on top of the burgers and dogs.

Chefs in the outdoor kitchen kept busy with hungry guests waiting for hot dogs and burgers.

Chefs in the outdoor kitchen kept busy with hungry guests waiting for hot dogs and burgers.

American Deluxe with Clay Sears and Matt Cappy were the perfect mix to the bbq vibe.

American Deluxe with Clay Sears and Matt Cappy were the perfect mix to the bbq vibe.

Chef discusses how to cook a goat after being wrapped in banana leaves.

Chef discusses how to cook a goat after being wrapped in banana leaves.

Some of the best lettuce we've ever tasted.

Some of the best lettuce we’ve ever tasted.

A veggie heavy potato salad is perfect for hot days.

A veggie heavy potato salad is perfect for hot days.

Tortellini and cheese are quite addicting.

Tortellini and cheese are quite addicting.

BBQ fare began with white beans.

BBQ fare began with white beans.

A colorful mason jar, ready to marinate in the vodka.

A colorful mason jar, ready to marinate in the vodka.

Guests full up mason jars with fresh fruits, herbs and veggies into the Tito's vodka.

Guests full up mason jars with fresh fruits, herbs and veggies into the Tito’s vodka.

The booze table had some stellar and refreshing options.

The booze table had some stellar and refreshing options.

Latin Evolution and The Latin Road Home were available for purchase.

Latin Evolution and The Latin Road Home were available for purchase.

Chef Jose Garces signing books for fans at the summer bbq.

Chef Jose Garces signing books for fans at the summer bbq.

Guests lined up to buy copies of Jose Garces' books and get them signed asap.

Guests lined up to buy copies of Jose Garces’ books and get them signed asap.

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A white wine sangria with fresh fruit.

A white wine sangria with fresh fruit.

Mixing up fresh made sangria with white wine.

Mixing up fresh made sangria with white wine.

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The niagarita was amazing and a little too smooth, almost like water but had 10% potency!

Chaddsford Winery came out to offer one of the most addicting and delicious cocktails alive!

Chaddsford Winery came out to offer one of the most addicting and delicious cocktails alive!

Rosati Water Ice had everyone's favorite - mango!

Rosati Water Ice had everyone’s favorite – mango!

Owwowcow Creamery slinging out cool, creamy gelato always makes people smile.

Owwowcow Creamery slinging out cool, creamy gelato always makes people smile.

For a sweeter side of things, these sweet flavors were a nice compliment.

For a sweeter side of things, these sweet flavors were a nice compliment.

Holy mole! The chocolate mole gelato had a nice kick at the end.

Holy mole! The chocolate mole gelato had a nice kick at the end.

Tony Luke's delicious, mouth-watering sandwich never disappoints.

Tony Luke’s delicious, mouth-watering sandwich never disappoints.

Tony Luke's representing Philly in the country.

Tony Luke’s representing Philly in the country.

Cucumbers, raspberries and fresh herbs were available to full the Tito's Vodka mason jars.

Cucumbers, raspberries and fresh herbs were available to full the Tito’s Vodka mason jars.

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And behind Tito's there was the bouncy house for kids.

And behind Tito’s there was the bouncy house for kids.

Tito's Handmade Vodka had mason jars prepped with vodka for guests to take home.

Tito’s Handmade Vodka had mason jars prepped with vodka for guests to take home.

Fat Jack's BBQ was deliciously tangy with pork and chicken options.

Fat Jack’s BBQ was deliciously tangy with pork and chicken options.

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