Notes from Brunch - No. 001

 Cartoon produced by  Benjamin Slyngstad

Cartoon produced by Benjamin Slyngstad

Collected and described by Zach Kaiser
Cartoon by Benjamin Slyngstad

This is our weekly collection of stories, videos, and insights on the minds of the authors at The Artisan Situation. We recommend reading these after Sunday Brunch.


I was honored in December to see Eric Schlosser, the journalist behind Fast Food Nationinterview Wendell Berry, the author behind The Unsettling of Americaat the Center for a Livable Future at Johns Hopkins University. Wendell's rhetoric, enthusiasm, convivial nature, and positive view of the environmental movement was motivating in a time when fear had paralyzed me. While I work to get my thoughts about the event on paper, take a moment to watch the interview. I came out of it hopeful and inspired to make change in our world. WATCH

Joel Salatin and his farm, Polyface Farm, have been elevated in recent years to fame by his inclusion in Michael Pollan's The Omnivore's Dilemma and through the documentary Food IncFor me what makes Joel an amazing farmer is his attention to detail. This piece by Indie Farmer shows the focus, determination, and breadth of knowledge he has accumulated over the years. READ

This week I booked a flight to Belgium. It is a moment I have been waiting for since I tried my first saison. The beer that started it all for me (besides Heady Topper from my friend Joe) was Saison Dupont. Clove, anise, esters, spice... it changed the way I thought about beer. This video about Brasserie Dupont by Potluck Creative and Good Beer Hunting gives me chills every time. Beer isn't just technical, it is about family, tradition, and staying "Simple and True." WATCH

Several years ago the idea of a vertical farm seemed like a myth. Today in Newark, New Jersey AeroFarms is building a farm to challenge beliefs. No matter how you feel about the benefits or negatives of vertical farming, one thing is for sure, it has the ability to change the way we think about farming, food, and urban development. I spent a year working with the team and saw first hand how sincerely they cared about the earth and the Newark community. Ian Frazier, of The New Yorker, will help you understand where they are now and where they are going. READ

Eliot Coleman at this point can farm with his eyes closed. He has been farming organically for over 40 years and wrote the book that Chris Blanchard of the Farmer to Farmer Podcast calls "the bible of organic market farming." Yet, he continues to push himself to farm better and think further into the future. In Episode 61 of the Farmer to Farmer Podcast, Eliot explains, "It's fun to do what people think is impossible." LISTEN

If you are truly in love with craft beer and haven't heard about Michael Kizer and his work at Good Beer Hunting you have been missing out. His blend of detailed journalism, critical thought, and intimate photography brings you to emotional and authentic places. Good Beer Hunting has, without a doubt, inspired The Artisan Situation. A recent piece on Suarez Family Brewery by Austin L. Ray and Blake Tyers takes you to the small town of Livingston, New York and introduces you to Dan, Taylor, and Enzo Suarez. READ

Entrepreneurs often come from unexpected places. Scott Nash, of MOM's Organic Market, started delivering fresh organic produce in the late 80s and now runs one of the most progressive grocery chains in the country setting the high water mark for sustainability standards and social stewardship. Jane Marion of Baltimore Magazine stopped by Nash's unassuming office in Rockville, Maryland to learn more about what makes an entrepreneur tick. READ

DC these days is teeming with new innovative bar and restaurant ideas. None more original than ANXO Cidery & Pintxos Bar, a cider bar with a menu focused on Basque cuisine. Sam, Tim, Cooper, and the rest of the team, work hard to bring in some of the highest quality ciders from producers all over the country. They have even begun creating collaboration ciders with the likes of Shacksbury, Millstone, Eden, and Farnum Hill and plan on opening their own full production facility in 2017. When in DC, it is a must stop for any cider enthusiast. VISIT