Categorized | Food

Mealani’s Taste of the Hawaiian Range (Oct. 4)

MEDIA RELEASE

Come hungry to the island’s mega agriculture festival, Mealani’s Taste of the Hawaiian Range. Time is 6-8 p.m. Friday, Oct. 4 and the 18th annual event sprawls inside and out of the Hilton Waikoloa Village.

Tickets are $40 presale and $60 at the door.

The menu headlines dry-aged, grass-finished beef — sourced from local, humanely raised cattle that spend their entire life eating grass after being weaned. It is free of antibiotics and hormones. Animal science research shows grass-fed beef is low in fat and calories, contains beneficial omega-3 fatty acids and is one of the richest known sources of conjugated linoleic acid (CIA), which has anti-cancer properties.

Thirty-five Hawaii chefs are assigned to prepare a whopping 100 pounds of a specific cut of beef — or locally sourced pork, lamb, mutton, goat or USDA-inspected wild boar — and the result is a festive adventure of tasting everything from tongue to tail.

The chef station annually serving Kohala Mountain Oysters, a nickname for local bull’s testicles, is always a Taste curiosity and favorite.

“The primary reason to assign all the beef cuts is for chefs and attendees to get acquainted with them while having fun,” said Jeri Moniz, event chairperson and rancher. “By utilizing the whole animal, there’s no waste and the value of the animal goes up. This is important for our livestock industry.”

Taste also showcases the efforts of our hard-working farmers, using a bounty of local vegetables, fruits and fungi in the chef’s culinary offerings. Attendees can talk story with local growers, ranchers and producers of value-added food products at gaily decorated booths while enjoying samples. In addition, Taste offers sustainability and agriculture-themed educational displays.

Those wanting to learn first-hand how to use and prepare 100 percent pasture-raised beef can attend the event’s annual Grass-Fed Beef Cooking 101 culinary demonstration.

This year’s guest presenter is Hubert Des Marais, executive chef of The Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii. A strong supporter of sourcing “local first,” Chef Des Marais uses two-to-three whole beef carcasses per month at the AAA Four Diamond award-winning resort. The 3 p.m. presentation includes sampling and is $10.

Online ticket links for both Taste and Cooking 101, plus islandwide ticket locations, can be found at: www.TasteoftheHawaiianRange.co…

For general event information, phone (808) 969-8228.

Mealani’s Taste of the Hawaiian Range and Agriculture Festival provides a venue for sustainable agricultural education, encouragement and support of locally produced ag products.

The premiere ag-tourism event is a partnership between CTAHR, Hawaii Cattlemen’s Association, Hawaii Cattlemen’s Council, Kulana Foods, UH-Hilo CAFNRM, County of Hawaii Dept. on Environmental Management and community volunteers.

Sponsorship also includes the Hawaii Tourism Authority, the Hawaii County Research and Development, Hawaii Community College Food Service & Culinary Program and KTA SuperStores. The quality and growth of this event are rooted in small business participation, sponsorship and in-kind donations.

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