The Farmer & The Chef

1 hr, 6 mins2014

He is a world-famous chef with one of best restaurants in the world.

She is biodynamic farmer known worldwide for her award-winning heirloom tomatoes.

And one thing connects them…. the food served at Manresa Restaurant in Los Gatos, California. Together, this farmer and this chef are revolutionizing how diners experience an elegant farm-to-table meal.

The James Beard Foundation named Chef David Kinch best chef in the Pacific in 2010. His restaurant, Manresa, has two Michelin Stars and was named one of the world's 50 best restaurants in 2013. Oh, and he kicked Bobby Flay’s butt on Iron Chef America in 2009.

Farmer Cynthia Sandberg owns Love Apple Farms in the tiny town of Ben Lomond. Nestled in the Santa Cruz Mountains, this two-acre farm is dedicated 100% to Manresa. Everything grown here is at Chef Kinch’s disposal. It’s such a unique and successful relationship that famous chefs like Eric Ripert and Alain Passard have traveled to this small town on the West Coast to cook with Chef Kinch and explore Cynthia’s farm.

But all is not so easy for this Farmer and this Chef. In order to keep his Michelin Stars and world rankings, Kinch has to constantly evolve to stay atop his game. In the current economic climate, survival means standing out from the crowd and serving the most unique and delicious meal, because if a customer is going to pay hundreds of dollars to dine, they expect nothing less than perfection.

To succeed, Chef Kinch has partnered with an iconic local farmer. For Sandberg, it’s a constant battle against Mother Nature, pests and a need to please her one client that keeps her up at night. Love Apple Farm is her life. It’s a for-profit business and her only source of income. Unlike many other biodynamic farms serving restaurants in this country, she doesn’t have the backing of a huge NGO. She has to make her farm profitable to pay the bills.

The Farmer & The Chef takes viewers behind the scenes to see how two creative geniuses struggle to grow and serve the perfect meal in America. It’s about the passion two people have for farming and cooking in a biodynamic way; that is, in a manner that respects the environment and is sustainable. It’s the ultimate farm-to-table experience, and viewers will have a front-row seat to see how it’s done. The possibilities are endless, but so are the potential pitfalls. The success of the restaurant is inexorably tied to the success of the farm. If one fails, both suffer. It’s about a return to old values with new technologies. It’s about respecting the land and the environment while still making a good living. It’s about a farmer respecting a chef and a chef respecting a farmer.