You couldn’t top the collard greens from Paradise Farms in Kanawha County and Sweet Farms in Summers County, the slow-cooked brisket from Milligan Creek Farms in Greenbrier County – and a whole pit roasted hog from Ekers Farm in Wayne County. Just a few of the delicious menu highlights we enjoyed Saturday evening, June 15th, at Pipestem State Park. “Pickin Pull” refers to some down home mountain music pickin’, and pulled pork from that roasted hog – along with all the fixins. They served it all up buffet style – not on plates, but on butcher paper-lined cookie sheets – for piling high and easy clean-up. This is the second year for the farm-to table partnership with the State Parks and the West Virginia Grown Farmers Association. This first of nine such locally sourced dinners had perfect weather at the perfect picnic spot. Getting off the Pipestem tram down to the Mountain Creek Lodge, the sold out crowd was greeted along the grassy banks of the Bluestone River with a bluegrass band, long red and white checkerboard covered tables and cornhole boards for playing or shaded rocking chairs for relaxing.
West Virginia’s Greenbrier Valley Brewing Company joined in the mountain state partnership, debuting their “35 Parks” brew, a tasty wheat-balanced IPA dedicated to the Mountain State’s 35 State Parks – with the key beer ingredients also locally sourced. In fact, 75 percent of all that was served at the Pickin Pull came from local West Virginia Farmers, and that’s what farm-to-table gatherings are all about (along with meeting new friends over a home cooked meal). Vickie really enjoyed the fresh taste of the kale salad with berries and a raspberry vinaigrette dressing, I loved the warm blueberry cobbler, and everybody dug into a pile of pulled pork with 5 kinds of home-made BBQ sauces to choose from.
We’ve been to a few farm-to-table dinners now, and found delicious locally grown and raised food, new friends and smiles with lively conversation all around. This Pipestem picnic however, had a relaxing, open-air festive feel that couldn’t be beat.
Check out the upcoming West Virginia State Parks farm-to table dinners at https://wvstateparks.com/farm-to-table-2019/. And, come hungry!
We loved Pipestem State Park! A warm, receptive lodge, wonderful grounds, great things to enjoy for anyone and everyone, amazing views, a friendly and helpful staff – this was our first visit and we will be back!
And, the new Pipestem Adventures Ziplines – Do you think a couple of baby boomers can handle the thrills? Take a look…