January 18, 2012 | 8:00am
If you checked out the Gilbert Farmers Market on a recent Saturday, you might've bumped shoulders with Joe Johnston or Chef David Traina of Liberty Market - they've been shopping the aisles and chatting with vendors, compiling a casting list of ingredients that will be the star players in the year's first community dinner.
They're calling it the "Double Market Dinner." It's Liberty Market and Gilbert Farmers Market in cohoots for a meal that will hold a magnifying lens to all that is artisanal (or just plain tasty) that vendors bring to the market held weekly in historic downtown Gilbert.
Johnston says there will be more than the usual five courses, as the chefs will include smaller tasting courses that better showoff the local ingredients. The meal will be $45; or $55 with a pairing of 4 Arizona beers; or $65 with a paring of 4 wines. Sign-ups began yesterday at the E61 Espresso Bar inside Liberty Market. There will be room for 40 diners and the feast starts at 6:30 p.m. sharp, Monday, Nov. 30th.
The possibilities for the meal seem endless - Gilbert's market is super diverse. The vendors collectively bring fish, beef, fruit, vegetables, grains, and seasonings to the table. Johnston and his team found inspiration in the wonderfully creative chefs across the nation who've achieved glowing reputations for checking off their weekly restaurant shopping lists at their respective farmers markets, spotlighting local foods and businesses one season at a time.
This time, it's all about Gilbert.
Follow Chow Bella on Facebook and Twitter.