Chef Heather Terhune will be joining Rancho Santana in the coveted Southwest Pacific destination’s Culinary Weekend series — one of many initiatives that has earned the restaurant a space on the “must do” lists for tourists and locals alike. The restaurant — mentioned in NYT Travel’s “46 Places to Go in 2013” — is set in a rugged but elegant oceanfront clubhouse and focuses on serving world-class food and drink predominantly — when not exclusively — sourced by their own sustainable farm and livestock program.
Over the course of the weekend, Chef Terhune will host three private culinary events where she will share her forward-thinking but thoughtful and ingredient-driven cuisine with guests in a variety of settings — one night beach blanket and camp fire, the next cocktails and a candlelit table on the terrace.
Terhune (Executive Chef of Chicago’s award-winning Sable Kitchen & Bar and former “Top Chef” competitor) says of the invitation to host, “I’ve spent a lot of years in kitchens all over the world, so to have the opportunity to work with foods that are totally new to me is pretty rare at this point in my career and very exciting.” Bringing her decades of experience to Nicaragua, Chef Terhune will be furthering the culinary exchange Rancho Santana has driven for over three years – and in turn, will be introduced to the unique local fruits, vegetables, seafood and food stylings of Nicaraguan culture.
“The ranch” boasts a food and beverage program that not only employs but educates hundreds of local staff members on the importance of integrity and responsibility in agricultural development – and that figure continues to rise as Rancho Santana’s farm program has expanded to include producing eggs from free range chicken as well as grass fed beef.
“Rich (Dacosta, Executive Chef) has an expert staff in the kitchen, but we aren’t ignorant to the fact that ongoing education for our staff is part of our responsibility in order to continue to offer our guests an exceptional dining experience,” says Block. In fact, all elements of Rancho Santana’s farm program are run by a team of local staff – all contributing to the transformation of the region through increased awareness of the importance of a local, fresh and nutritious diet as Nicaraguan tourism and hospitality industries continue to grow steadily.
Friday, August 8
Guided Morning Garden Tour with Chef Heather Terhune at Rancho Santana Organic Farm
Join Chef Heather and La Finca y el Mar’s Farmer Chris as they select the weekend’s produce from Rancho Santana’s very own Organic Garden. Learn about the steps we are taking to provide fresh and unique varieties of fruit and vegetables.
A Fireside Feast with Chef Heather Terhune at Playa Rosada
The only way to improve on the spectacular sunsets at Playa Rosada is with a killer feast! We’ll be fixing up tons of food and drink to be enjoyed at a beach-side bonfire.
$25 USD per person*
Saturday, August 9
Sable Meets Santana, An Elegant Supper with Chef Heather Terhune at La Finca y El Mar
The latest in Rancho Santana’s popular guest chef tasting menus, Chef Heather Terhune and the La Finca y el Mar team will be showcasing the best of Nicaraguan ingredients with her unique twist. A full wine pairing completes the culinary experience.
$60 USD per person ($50 USD per person for RS guests), and optional $20 USD wine tasting*
Sunday, August 10
“Morning After” Brunch & Bubbly with Chef Heather Terhune at La Finca y El Mar
Not full yet? Finish off the weekend with a mix of sweet and savory brunch items. We’ll be offering a wide selection of tropical-flavored mimosas, as well as the best Nicaraguan coffees available.
$15 USD per person*
*Guests can also purchase an all-access ticket and enjoy the entire weekend of events for $95 USD per person.
La Finca y El Mar at Ranch Santana, Nicaragua
Spanish for “The Farm and the Sea”, La Finca y el Mar showcases a locally sourced menu inspired by its setting within the community and premiere destination of Rancho Santana. Located on the shoreline of the Southwest Pacific coast of Nicaragua, the restaurant’s dining room and terrace offer a nearly surreal ambiance that was thoughtfully conceived to be both rustic and elegant. Executive Chef Rich Dacosta’s seasonal ingredient-focused menus are sourced almost exclusively through the Rancho Santana sustainable farm and livestock programs, but otherwise rely on neighboring farmers and fisherman. La Finca y el Mar and Rancho Santana are privately owned and operated under Tola Development Corp. www.lafincayelmar.com .
Rancho Santana, Nicaragua
Rancho Santana, set serenely in the Southwest Pacific offers a collection of distinctive seaside experiences. Though under three hours from Nicaragua’s capital city of Managua by car, the property has grown into a quiet community that enjoys purity, authenticity, and a rustic elegance. Both residential and resort, “the ranch” boasts over 2,700 acres of majestic land along two miles of shoreline which include five unique beaches. And while this paradise is the perfect setting to do nothing at all but sunbathe and stargaze, its remarkable range of terrain, unique climate and soothing coastal breezes make it a coveted destination for the more active and adventurous traveler. Rancho Santana is privately owned and operated under Tola Development Corp. www.ranchosantana.com