November 24, 2017

“Locavoire” Gives New Meaning to Dining Experience, July 17

 

PHOTO BY CAROLYN CHESLER

“Locavoire” Gives New Meaning to Dining Experience, July 17

Topanga resident Scott Franklin Manning at the first "Locavoire" event he created on June 17, that raised $500 for the Topanga Playground Project.

Following their first successful “Locavoire” event—“100% Organic Farm to Table Vital Food & Music Experience”—on June 17, that raised $500 for the Topanga Playground Project, Locavoire creator, philanthropist and Topanga resident Scott Franklin Manning is set to do it again, bigger and better, if that’s possible, on July 17.

The first sold-out event held at The 1909, hosted 100 guests for an evening replete with a 100 percent organic, raw, gluten-free, vegan dinner, a complimentary holistic healing lounge and music by “Sons of Music Legends” Daniel Bambaata Marley (Ziggy Marley's son and Bob's grandson), Taro Hart (son of Micky Hart of The Grateful Dead) and Micah Nelson aka Particle Kid (Willie Nelson's son).

Manning, a recently arrived Topanga resident, is owner of Isness Productions and has produced similar events in Asheville, NC, and Kauai, HI, places he lived prior to Topanga.

“We like to support our local farmers who practice sustainable agriculture and are in the planning stages to collaborate with the same farmers we buy from for Locavoire in starting up a “Farm to Family Co-Op” here in Topanga that also raises money for community projects. We call it Community Sustainable Agriculture (www.communitysustainableagriculture.org),” Manning explained. “We were blessed to raise $500 for the Topanga Playground and look forward to finding more creative ways to keep raising much needed funds for these types of community projects.”

Manning doesn’t mince words; he makes them up with an eye to his philosophy and philanthropic bent. His production company is Isness Productions. “Locavoire,” which sounds like a close derivative of the word, “locavore,” meaning to eat locally produced food, takes a step further, saying, “It implies a connection with the community to our local sustainable farmers.”

The eight-course The Locavoire menu —all raw, live, organic and vegan—was created by the culinary service team of master chef collaborators Chef Be *Live, and Chef Domingo and a staff of 60 who, without missing a beat, saw to it that guests, even those who arrived late, were well attended during the full 8-course menu.

The musicians, seated together near the center of the tables, surprised guests both during and in between courses, when they broke out in song. Daniel Marley performed impromptu for a table still enjoying their dessert. Later, ending a song with his band, Micah Nelson said to the crowd, “What a unique gig, what more do you want?” Taro Hart’s post-dinner set of inspired originals drew an intimate crowd to the amphitheater stage (All music played during this event was original). These fascinating young musicians were more than happy to casually chat with the guests, and it was a charming surprise.

“They truly ‘rawked,’” Chef Be *Live declared in a sampling, if you will, of his custom vernacular, where he also coined the word “livations” to describe the complete experience.

Having the Chefs visit your table to describe the ingredients of each course heightened the experience as did the guests, complete strangers to begin with, who were great conversationalists and agreed that the most popular dish was the sixth course, Truffle Cauliflower Gratin. The last course, Blueberry Orange Blossom Cheesecake, took a close second (maybe even tied) when one of our tablemates declared, “The fresh blueberries simply cannot compare to anything!”

Everything unfolded as per design. Everything. There wasn’t anything offered during the event that failed to make a person feel really, really good.

Run, don’t walk to the next “Locavoire” event and, while you’re at it, add the word to your dining experience vocabulary.

RESERVE YOUR SPACE NOW

The July offering is, again, a fundraiser for the playground and Manning will expand the experience with additional musicians, among them, the Grammy-nominated Kora player from Senegal, Youssoupha Sidibe, alongside The Human Revolution from Nashville, TN). A late-night performance by all the musicians will begin inside the house at 10:30 p.m. for an additional $25 (limited to 100 people). To read about the musicians and listen to their music, visit locavoire.org/july-17.html.

Manning is also adding twice as many Holistic Healers (now 25 on staff) for the pre-dinner healing session.

“The body workers are an extremely important part of these events,” Manning explained. “We really want everyone to feel good throughout the night, which is why the healing lounge begins when they arrive.”

The event begins at 5 p.m. with dinner and the show begins at 7 p.m.

Make your reservation before July 1 for $100. After that, the price goes up to $125. Remember, it’s all for a great cause: “To Raise Much Needed Money for Topanga's Only Playground.”