Elkridge Furnace Inn's executive chef/owner Dan Wecker stopped by a table of Patch staff having lunch on Tuesday and did an impromptu Q&A on .
Sponsored by Howard County Tourism, the event features fixed-priced menus from July 18 to Aug. 6 at various county restaurants. Two in Elkridge are participating; the other is .
The county's theme is "farm to table" and Wecker elaborated on the home-grown nature of the's $35.12 dinner menu for Patch.
What comes from the garden? We're even closer than "farm to table"—we're garden to table. In the morning, I pick the herbs and garnishes and things we're going to prep [from the garden next to the restaurant]. It's a little cooler in the morning so I was here at 7 this morning picking, and then in the afternoon the guys will pick for additional things they need for dinner service. For the specials that we're doing, they'll work with the things that we pick. We're also curing our own meats, we're smoking our own hams, and we're doing all that all the time.
How has Restaurant Weeks turnout been so far? We've had three tables in the past week who said they came for Restaurant Weeks, so it hasn't done much for us. Baltimore City [restaurant week] is when it picks up for us. We've had very good success with Baltimore City.
Why do you think the turnout for Howard County Restaurant Weeks has been low? I don't think many people in Columbia and Howard County know where Elkridge is. Sometimes we have people say, "Well, you're all the way over in Elkridge." All the way over in Elkridge? It's a 10 or 12-minute drive from most of these places.