LongHouse Food Revival Austin

Last week I employed HGGH entertaining and decor operatives for Molly O’Neill’s (of Cook n Scribble fame) LongHouse Food Revival here in Austin. My task: turn a dusty art studio/event space into a cozy dinner for 150, on a budget, of course.

My plan…

Table cover: The borrowed burlap was a no go, so we opted for a roll of natural butcher paper. 

Napkins: 10 yards of quilting, 100%-cotton fabric (on sale), cut into 12”x18” rectangles (a whole lot of 12”x18” rectangles). Thankfully Melissa Guerra has connections in San Antonio and was able to cut most of them on a machine. (The napkins are now a unified tumble in my dryer, awaiting their imminent hemming.)

Rings: Canning bands, mostly mine, some borrowed from friends, free.

Vases/Votives: Canning jars, three cases purchased, the rest borrowed from my class inventory. White electrical tape bands placed midway across the jars uniformly.

Runner: Tempera white paint (which failed to adhere to the jars when dry, hence electrical tape) rolled over a $2 refrigerator grate (found at the hardware store) to form a patterned runner down the middle of the table.

Bouquets: Edible, free. Thanks to the Travis County Master Gardeners for letting me snip the oregano, rosemary, and broccoli from the edible yard at the Travis County Extension Office. Mexican mint marigold, parsley and fennel from our cooperative garden. (And we’re now eating/fermenting/drying the centerpieces!)

Molly and her co-producer Will Levitt were excited to see it all come together that afternoon. Simona was a table setting rockstar, who effectively turned small-scale vision into large scale action. 

Photo courtesy of Jo Ann Santangelo and Cook n Scribble

Photo courtesy of Jo Ann Santangelo and Cook n Scribble

Here a few other highlights of the evening:

The pop-up magazine, with demos, interviews, videos and discussions surrounding authenticity.

Melissa Guerra’s (linked above) husband, Enrique (Kiko) Guerra deconstructs cabrito.

Dinner, duh! Such a fabulous feast, with 150 new friends.

My wife took photos for the LongHouse crew last week; you can see more (and better) shots here or here