Farm to Future

by Kristin Meekhof

An evolution from a wooded New Hampshire farm to a comfortable New England table

Several years ago, Kristin Canty, a Boston College alum trained in speech pathology, was on a mission to help her youngest child live a life free from allergies and asthma. After months of research, she discovered the healing properties of raw milk. And after integrating raw milk into her son’s diet, along with a clean, healthy diet, she found him to be asthma-free.

The mother of four, armed with knowledge about the benefits of eating local and organic food, became an advocate for both small- and large-scale farms. Canty spent much of her time talking with farmers about their challenges. And in 2011, she produced the documentary film, Farmageddon—The Unseen War on American Family Farms.

Post-film launch, Canty decided to open an organic and sustainable restaurant with a menu that was thoughtfully sourced from a local farm. In 2013, she purchased a 265-acre farm in New Hampshire. With the help of farm manager Amber Reed, Canty and her team now raise grass-fed cows, pigs, chickens and lambs, and grow organic vegetables, including a variety of mushrooms. After a full growing season at the farm was complete, Canty opened Woods Hill Table restaurant, in Concord, MA, featuring dishes inspired by the current growing season and sourced by Canty’s farm, along with other local farmers.

At Woods Hill Table, Executive Chef Charlie Foster serves beautiful and delicious dishes such as Wood Grilled Calamari, Black Bass Crudo, Sunflower Barigoule, Line Caught Hake, and Duo of Pastured Chicken with ingredients such as squid ink canestri, roasted summer squash and blossom, crucolo cheese, serrano chili, hakurei turnips, purple potatoes, pommes dauphine and oyster mushrooms, and parsley oil. The New England cheeses are raw, and restaurant wines are organic or biodynamic. Pastry Chef Douglas Phillips brings a unique blend of depth and sweetness to each of the six dessert items, including one that is dairy-free.

Canty is at the farm at least once a month and at the restaurant every evening doing everything from seating guests to answering questions about how her animals are raised. She says she wants every guest to remember “the meal was delicious, the service was phenomenal and the atmosphere was warm and inviting.”  woodshilltable.com 


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