Andiamo all’aperto!  So say the italians to encourage a shift outdoors in the warmer months.  Each summer for 10 weeks, the team at Smolak Farms in North Andover breathes life into this charge with Whim, their signature “pop up” dining experience every Wednesday evening  from June 22 – August 31.  Now in its sixth season, the popular series brings some of New England’s finest chefs to the farm to cook and serve multi-course dinners under the stars and in the rough in the farm’s Pine Grove area.   Whim is beloved by foodies from all over the Boston area for its authentic Farm-to-Table experience featuring the seasonal fresh fruits, berries and vegetables grown right there at Smolak. And the series name is a play on the concept of the guest chefs building their menus “on a whim” fueled by the produce available at the farm during their visit.

Commonwealth's Chef/Owner Steve "Nookie" Postal

Commonwealth’s Chef/Owner Steve “Nookie” Postal

On July 20th, Chef/Owner at Commonwealth in Kendall Square Steve ““Nookie” Postal will be the evening’s host, “Cooking with ingredients of the moment is what we do at Commonwealth, so this Whim dinner is like a pretty cool extension of that. Smolak gives us all the summer squash, zucchini, tomatoes, cucumbers, radishes, basil and mint we could want, and we come up with something delicious for a bunch of great people eating outside on beautiful night. When you cook with seasonal ingredients, writing a menu comes easy. We’re going to smoke a bunch of meat, create some great flavor combinations, and let the ingredients shine. I’m really looking forward to it.”

This summer Whim will feature the following chefs renowned for their innovation and commitment to using only the freshest local ingredients:

July 13:  DAVIOS, Chef Danny Levesque

July 20:  COMMONWEALTH, Chef Steve “Nookie” Postal

July 27:  GRILL 23, Chef Eric Brennan

August 3:  LOCO, Chef Mark Drummond

August 10:  POST 390, Chef Nick Deutmeyer

August 17:  THE LANGHAM, Chef Mark Sapienza

August 24:  SWEET CHEEKS Q, Chef Daniel Raia

August 31:  HARVEST, Chef Tyler Kinnett

Hats off to the team at Smolak for bringing the Boston restaurant scene and beyond to the north shore each summer with these one of a kind evenings featuring (several course) meals and companion wines.  Also, kudos for creating such a rich New England dining experience under the stars smack in the middle of the work week.  So, what are you up to Wednesday night?  Limited tickets remain for several of the dinners… the perfect excuse for connecting with friends and celebrating summer’s harvest!

SMOLAK FARMS is located at 315 South Bradford Street in North Andover, MA.  In addition to their dinner series, their farm stand is open daily from 7AM – 5PM.  Tickets for Whim are $75 per person plus tax.  Menus are posted roughly two weeks before the event date.

Author Susan Currie is an Associate Editor at LA YOGA magazine. Her words and images have been featured in the Boston Globe, Elephant Journal, Yogi Times, the Tishman Review, the Huffington Post, Spirit of St. Bart’s and on the cover of the book Moving into Meditation (Shambala) by Anne Cushman. 

Susan is also the creator of the Daily Inhale and an RYT 200 registered yoga instructor. She unpacks her various professional experiences through the creative and yoga workshops she leads throughout the country. Her new book, GRACENOTES (Shanti Arts 2017), a blend of words and images, is now available in wide release.