A feast for the senses would aptly define the Books2Eat event held Sunday at the Midland Public Library. Nicole Di Pinto, owner of Grounded Coffee Company in Midland, first experienced this world wide event in London Ontario. When serendipity returned Nicole to Midland, she brought with her the passion, energy and organizational skills to become the dynamic driving force behind this delicious event. Nicole and her cohort, Library Program Assistant, Scott Cooper successfully inspired local chefs and restaurant owners to creative heights. Chief Librarian Bill Molesworth, fully supported this venture, and on Sunday was seen enjoying the flavours of the day. The second annual Books2Eat festival was a huge success, raising funds for the Midland Public Library. Last year the festival sold 200 tickets, this year, using the space on both floors at the library, they sold out the afternoon at 300 tickets!
Books2Eat is a worldwide festival showcasing the creative culinary skills of the best local chefs as they find inspiration in paying edible homage to their favorite books.
Held as close as possible to April 1st that being the birthday of French gastronome Jean-Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, who was famous for his book “Physiologie du goût”, (The Physiology of Taste), first published in 1825, it is a tongue in cheek, witty reflection on food.
The International Edible Book Festival was created by Judith A. Hoffberg, a librarian herself, and Beatrice Coron, who created the Books2Eat website, where with a few clicks of the keyboard you will find jaw dropping, mouthwatering images of the gastronomical goodies inspired by the chefs book choice. The internet allows ease of sharing the pictures and is part of the goal, making the festival visually accessible to all.
As a good book can feed the soul, the edible offerings based on great books can feed a library full of bibliophiles and food loving patrons quite satisfactorily!
The community supports this event; students in the culinary class at Penetang Secondary School made and served sweet and savory appetizers to the eager throngs. The Local Business Association had a butter tart based booth, keen on catching the buzz while promoting another upcoming area event.
Wine was poured, hors d’oeuvres were nibbled, and the smell of good coffee drifted, acoustic music was played and patrons voted on their favourite creation. While votes were tabulated, the highlight of the day, the actual tasting of the masterpieces occurred. Smiles and crumb coated lips abounded!
Winner this year was 101 Dalmations by the Lady Bug Café. First Runner up was The Edible Woman by The Explorers Café, second runner up, and my favourite, was the creation by André Sanché of Ciboulette et Cie with a tribute to Dr. Seuss. His green eggs and ham tasted even better than it looked! Third runner up was Sesame Street by Gianetto’s Fruit Market.
Another personal favourite was the decadent display inspired by Alice in Wonderland, created by The Library Restaurant.
The jovial mood was contagious; a simply wonderful event was enjoyed by all. Midland is my new favourite go- to, day- trip location; having been tempted by the offerings presented at Books2Eat, I am keen to explore the area. I plan on checking out the historic S.S.Keewatin, the restaurants and shops, and I suspect I will take a book!
Midland Public Library 320 King Street, Midland, ON L4R 3M6 (705) 526-4216
Written by: Penelope Morrow
Penelope Morrow is a writer, editor and food aficionado from Barrie, follow her tweets at @penelopejmorrow