Outstanding in the Field, that Magical Mystery Tour of underground suppers, has announced its 2011 schedule. As usual, the dates are heavy on visits to West Coast farms. In case you don't know much about this roving feast, allow us: a merry band of activists, artists, and chefs pilots a 60-year-old bus to farms around the country; local celebrated chefs prepare each farm's products for hordes of diners eager soak up the stories of the people and places attached to the meal; instead of magicians, masks, and famous people acting daft, there are, depending on the time of year and the feasting site, nettles, heirloom tomatoes, and mind-bendingly good raw milk cheeses. Turn the page for the upcoming Southern California dates.
May 11 in Ojai, CA: Earthtrine Farm, with guest chef Rachel Main
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May 12 in Ojai, CA: Rio Gozo Farm, with guest chef Tim Kilcoyne
May 14 in Temecula, CA: Crows Pass Farm, with guest chef Patrick McCabe
May 15 in National City, CA: Olivewood Gardens, with guest chef Brian Malarkey
Tickets are $200 for most events, covering food, wine, farm tours, impromptu speeches, views, and the chance to cross forks with great chefs and the fascinating folks who till earth for a living. They tend to sell out fast. If you miss this flurry, do not fear though. The bus will be in Lompoc and Santa Margarita in early June and back again for events in Long Beach, Temecula, and Los Angeles proper come November.