Gwen Fowler



Indie Grits festival combines great films and food

Posted 4/8/2012 10:10:00 PM

The 2012 Indie Grits Festival is a celebration of films, but food plays a starring role, too – just as you might expect from a festival with the word “grits” in its title.

Films on food, a grits bar and a Sustainable Chef’s Showcase are part of the event, which runs April 19-29 in Columbia. Presented by the Nickelodeon Theatre, Indie Grits is in its sixth year.

The festival opening party at 7 p.m. Thursday, April 19, at 701 Whaley pays tributes to a favorite Southern food with an artisan grits bar by Scott Hall Catering & Event Design. Hall, also executive chef and owner of the Bone-In Artisan Barbecue on Wheels food truck, will be serving Adluh stone ground yellow grits with some cool toppings, including Wasabi peas, Crispy fried local herbs, assorted artisan cheeses, thick-cut Applewood smoked bacon lardons, Caw Caw Creek chorizo, roasted vegetables, pulled pork and braised collards.

The opening night party also will feature DJs, a cash bar and film trailers. Tickets are $8.

More than 10 chefs from some of Columbia's top farm-to-table restaurants will be cooking at Slow Food at Indie Grits: Sustainable Chefs Showcase 4-7 p.m. Sunday, April 22, at All-Local Farmer’s Market at 711 Whaley.

Each chef will be preparing a food using at least one local, sustainable ingredient at this Slow Food Columbia event, said Katie Alice Walker of KAW Communications

Slow Food Columbia defines sustainable for this event “as close to organic as possible; as little impact on air and water systems as possible; short transport routes; fair wages to workers; a passion for high quality ingredients with excellent flavor; and practicing conservation on a day-to-day level,” according to its website.

Chefs from Mr. Friendly's, Motor Supply Company, TerraRosso Trattoria Italia, 116 State, Rosewood Market and Baan Sawan are among those participating.

Many members of Slow Food Columbia also will be bringing potluck dishes, Walker said, so there will be plenty of food at this event.

Prices are $20 for early bird of potluck host tickets, $30 for Slow Food and nickelodeon members and $35 general admission.

Among more than 60 films being shown during the festival are two food-oriented ones, including “Eating Alabama,” which premiered at South by Southwest. Directed by Andrew Grace of Tuscaloosa, Ala., the film tells of a young couple who set out to eat locally and seasonally and also learn how the food system has changed.

“Eating Alabama” and “Grand Fugue on the Art of Gumbo,” which looks at gumbo and perceptions of Southern Food, will be shown on at 8 p.m. on Monday, April 23, and at 8:30 p.m. on Friday, April 27.