Jaret Foster is a Montana native who will be feeding us on October 3rd at the Field to Vase Dinner at Oregon Flowers. He is a gifted chef who has worked in the culinary world since he was in high school. He graduated from the Western Culinary Institute in Portland and honed his craft by cooking in professional kitchens on both coasts for more than 10 years, all the while researching nutrition and working on small farms.
Jaret and his partner Mona Johnson have a deep appreciation of food and farming that eventually led them to Portland Farmers Market, where Jaret served as operations director for nearly a decade and Mona served as communications manager.
In 2013, Jaret and Mona started offering a series of “Oyster Socials” in partnership with local breweries.
The popularity of these events prompted the couple to turn to catering fulltime and Foster’s Craft Catering was launched.
Their longstanding relationships with the region’s growers, ranchers, fishermen and producers provide them with direct access to the finest and freshest ingredients and a strong connection to Portland’s vibrant food community.
We recently caught up with Jaret to learn more about his culinary philosophy:
F2V: Why oysters?
JF: Eating oysters is a communal act. I cook oysters and mussels over an open fire, which creates a memorable and tactile experience for everyone involved. When you eat with your hands you are literally breaking bread with people. It’s lively. It’s beautiful. It creates connections.
F2V: What are you planning for our Field to Vase Dinner menu?
JF: We will grill salmon on a large plank of cedar over fresh leeks with crumbled smoked salmon – it will be a double-whammy in deliciousness.
F2V: Will we enjoy your signature oysters?
JF: Yes! We’ll have an “oyster social” reception with ginger-shallot mignonette, crudités and aioli. I’m working with a micro farm that specializes in garlic to include in the menu.
F2V: How do you feel about dining at a flower farm?
JF: I love it! We will be eating at a lily farm. I’m creating a menu based on onions and garlic – onions are in the lily family, after all. Each course will have a pretty significant onion component. Our dinner will be farm-direct and farmer-focused.