The food festivals of the country are designed to reveal the most original combinations and delicious characteristics of the cuisine of our region and to conquer the locals and the tourists.
The #GARoon Lamb Festival will feature a range of chef ideas and different meat-cooking styles: traditional Armenian dishes and European variations await us.
According to the organizers, the festival will be remembered not only by the aromas of the stove and the whistling of the firewood, but also by the noisy company and the happy atmosphere: characteristics of the different regions of Armenia. “
I would like to note that many lamb dish festivals are held in the world, as it turned out, this is no accident. The United Kingdom, New Zealand and the United States host annual interactive events that include sheep shearing, lamb tasting and an exhibition of livestock products from local farmers and producers.
Among the most popular is the NSA North Sheep in the North of England, which brings together the kingdom’s top producers and gourmets for a decade, the Maryland Sheep and Wool Festival in the US, which impresses visitors with its country music for almost half century. , family competitions and excellent lamb dishes, wine and food festivals in New Zealand, where there are 40 million sheep per 4 million people.
Of course, Armenian cuisine can not be imagined exclusively without meat ingredients, but few know that until the 70s of last century, lamb was preferred mainly as the only hypoallergenic product included in the modern diet by supporters of a healthy lifestyle.
As it turned out, Armenian restaurants are supporters of the strategy of environmentally friendly consumption and use of waste-free products to respect the environment. This tradition has fascinated the markets of Europe and Asia for several decades, but has not yet spread to Armenia. Lamb is a unique product, almost 100% cooked.
We conducted a survey among the participants in the #GARoon festival to find out what principles guide restaurants and whether the concept of “smart” rationality for raw materials in the hospitality industry is relevant to Armenia.
As Andranik Grigoryan notes, the Club is impressed by the concept of “waste-free production”: “We buy a whole lamb, use entrails to prepare dishes such as thal, pate, baked eggs and ice cream, lard and liver, roast. fillet, tender kebab, burger, lamb leg boiled in wine. and we make fresh cheese from milk “.
Suren Abgaryan from the Baklachoff Collection adds with confidence that “raw material” is an important ingredient for industry, so it is extremely important to find the right supplier to reduce potential waste: “We choose young lamb, because the younger the animal , the less cholesterol: 5-6 month old lambs should not be too fat. For our dishes we prefer fresh, not frozen meat. The meat must be odorless. The palette of dishes with lamb is extremely rich, we are constantly adding interesting new products to the menu. “
Christine Balayan, co-founder of Artsakh’s Tumanyan’s Art Wine House, says: “It was the lack of organic produce that prompted us to open our in-house restaurant. It is important for us humans to eat healthy and wholesome foods. We try to use only natural products and we have organized a small production of dairy products (matsun, cheese). “I plan to bake my own wholemeal sourdough bread.”
Zhirayr Avanyan emphasizes that it is very important to work with local producers in the region: “Most of our kitchen products are local – from the Tavush region. We pay special attention to the quality of the ingredients, they are an important basis for our dishes at ImToon. The cooperation with the locals is a capable attitude towards the nature and the health of the visitors “.
Varda Avetisyan supports her colleague in Dilijan, noting that the TAVA restaurant did not even buy decoration, but used old furniture: “We really like the direction of ecotourism and we believe that Armenia is a great destination for it. We really hope that the local culture of use and recycling will soon change to more favorable for the rapid development of ecotourism in our country. We consider ourselves a conscious consumer business because our restaurants do not waste food and we recycle anything that can be recycled. “Food waste is fed to homeless animals in Dilijan (we work with local organizations and activists) and pigs of our employees.”
Valery Bagdagyulyan believes that the Kilikia family’s restaurant has managed to introduce a rational approach to the kitchen: “Our chefs often take recipes from ancient Armenian books, giving a new breath to historical dishes, then there was a special approach to the ingredients. Of course, such reverence for tradition is not accidental: respect for our memory and culinary origins requires attention and respect for the ingredients and their use. For example, our dish – tolma udoli – is based on a 10th century recipe.
Karen Margaryan from the Margaryan Business Group notes that working with local producers is an important step for the industry: “One of the aims of the festival is to draw the attention of restaurants to the local market and encourage farmers to meet international standards. , to buy raw materials in Armenia. In recent years, I have seen a positive turn in this direction. I hope that the circulation of the festival in the regions will also draw the attention of the producers to our needs. “
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