While chefs are contending with continued price increases, they’re serving the community and dishing up great dining experiences anyway. Where supply chain issues persist, they’re innovating and making it work. Creekside at the Gamble Mill’s Chef Michael Marx shared that he’s had to swap out fan favorite items from his menu with new dishes in an effort to keep costs accessible for guests. Starting June 25, Creekside will add Sunday brunch to their weekend offerings after hearing locals comment on the lack of places to eat in Bellefonte on Sunday mornings. There’s a drive to fill in the gaps, feed people good food, and relentlessly overcome hurdles to ensure our culinary community remains vibrant.
And it’s a heck of a lot to juggle. It’s consistent reinvention and on-the-spot tweaking that most of us, as diners, will never see. Our local chefs and their teams continue to alchemize stress, uncertainty, and behind the scenes challenges into the food experiences that become the centerpieces of our celebrations, comfort when we need it, or a great meal when we don’t have the energy to cook it.
And while we may individually frequent a specific restaurant only a couple times a year, the team of people at that restaurant shows up for us, as a community, every single day.
So here are a few things I’m celebrating from behind the scenes of Restaurant Week:
Learning about Hublersburg Inn’s wildly popular Italian Wine chef’s dinner! (Making a mental note to get tickets for the next one…)
State Burger Co. co-owner Dustin Smith enthusiastically rattling off a laundry list of divine-sounding bakery items – coming soon!
The Field’s menu featuring an array of local beverages and ingredients.
And every other restaurant on our list going out of their way to make something fun, creative, and delicious for all of us extremely lucky Happy Valley eaters.
If Restaurant Week reminds us of anything, I hope it’s that our food scene is not an “us” (the diners) and “them” (the restaurants) dynamic.
It’s individual people, all a part of our community, who have an opportunity to serve each other. Some of our neighbors are cooking us wonderful, creative food. And others are supporting and cheering on and eating!