Dining Docs: Slow Food Flourishes on the First Coast
By Virginia Pillsbury
Baptist Health Cardiologist Dr. Marc Litt (pictured at the far left) is a foodie who cares about heart health, so when he discovered the slow food philosophy, he became a fan personally and professionally. For him and his wife a date night means dining at a locally owned farm-to-table establishment such as Jacksonville’s recently opened Black Sheep.
“Slow food is the opposite of fast food,” says Dr. Litt. “Fast food is problematic for heart disease.” By sharing the slow food approach verses the fast food approach he can explain the need to change dietary habits to his patients.
“I think that people are becoming more aware of the benefits of where their food comes from,” says Richard Villadoniga, founder of Slow Food First Coast. “It is nice when you can shake a farmer’s hand and ask him questions and taste the bounty that we have locally. And we also encourage people to support local restaurants that support the local food movement when they don’t cook at home,” he says.
“The philosophy of eating local meats and veggies in season instead of importing food that you wouldn’t normally eat, helps your body get accustomed to what is good for you,” says Dr. Litt. “I am not a guru about this, but the idea of using fewer pesticides and fertilizers and learning more about the food you eat is a more healthy way of eating.”
Black Sheep fills the bill for Dr. Litt. “I saw that Black Sheep was using regional and locally produced sources as much as they could and I thought that this was a more healthy approach and the way that restaurants should do things. And it helps the local economy.” Black Sheep partners with local businesses including Black Hogg Farms, Palatka; Cowboy Meats, Glen St. Mary; Sweet Grass Dairy, Thomasville, Georgia and Wainwright Dairy, Live Oak.
Caption: Dr. Litt, his wife, and friends enjoy an evening out at Black Sheep.
To find more information visit www.slowfoodfirstcoast.com or www.blacksheep5points.com.