Above: Justus Kempthorne and Inez Valk-Kempthorne inside Table on Ten. Photo from Table on Ten's Facebook page.
Table on Ten has already been singled out in a New York Times rave by an opinion blogger who found himself enchanted by the collusion of local farmers with comparatively recent arrivals who dream of shaping the next Delaware County destination eatery. (His other great finds: our friends at Buttercup and Two Old Tarts.) They've just recently been described as “refreshingly ragtag” on the hip blogsite Remodelista.
At their three-month anniversary mark Inez Valk-Kempthorne and Justus Kempthorne are still configuring their new landmark but it's already earned a warm spot in local hearts as well. Wood-fired brick oven pizza for chilly autumn evenings anyone?
Watershed Post: How did you come to open a business in Bloomville?
IV-K: We were lucky enough to have friends up here and fell totally in love with the health benefits the lifestyle and the space. We built our house in Bovina and had our eye on this formerly residential building. Structurally it was in good shape but we had to replace the sheet rock and heating system and so on.
We'd been inspired by helping to create Four and Twenty Blackbirds a pretty unique pie shop in Brooklyn. Justus worked on the reno for their place. Now they come up to Bloomville and make pies for us. We've been full timers up here for three years now and it feels wonderful.
WP: It looks like you have quite a variety of things going on all centered on local food. Your farm stand for example sourced everything from within ten miles?
I V-K: Well the farm stand is closed for the season but it will be back next spring – and yes that was the rule. You'd be amazed how many wonderful producers we have within a ten-mile radius – the most amazing organic chickens ever for example.
For the cafe and the micro-shop we break the ten-mile rule. We carry some all-natural products that we loved in the city and really missed – we have prosciutto from Jersey for example. It wouldn't make sense not to offer some of the finer things from other places too. Every last item on any of the menus may not be technically “certified organic” because that designation involves a ton of paperwork that's burdensome to some of the smaller producers. But everything is absolutely all natural and fresh. We make our own cookies and granola. Our coffee Irving Farms is roasted fresh in the Hudson Valley.
WP: Besides pizza nights with your new wood fired oven you've got some educational events coming up.
I V-K: We like to be a platform for ideas a venue that serves the community. Tomorrow I get to go mallow harvesting with my friend Marguerite over on her beautiful property – she's an expert on wild foraging which opens up a whole other world of ingredients and sustainability. We'll be working with her on ingredients and workshops.
And we'll be having guest chefs make dinners. We've got an outstanding Mexican night coming up; the chef will be making his own masa from scratch for the tortillas. Since we opened the doors we've had a lot of amazing people come in who are very passionate about food. It's a team effort which keeps the whole thing very fun and fresh. We're constantly growing and changing – it's good to have a core business that lends itself so easily to collaboration.