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These are the Hands...

...who, along with Veronica Volny, bought a 1995 International 3600 Thomas/Vista school bus on eBay, converted it to a kitchen, and drove it out to a farm field to prepare dinner from the day's harvest.

China Tresemer. China split her childhood between Boulder and New England. She began her cooking career at age eight when she opened a restaurant on a beach, serving sand-crusted jellyfish pie and seaweed salad. Despite her early success as a chef and restaurant owner, China pursued higher education: she lived in New York City for three years, earning a degree in Fine Arts at Parsons School of Design and cooking at Slow Food USA and La Cuisine Sans Peur. Thereafter, she moved to Europe, and worked in Italy and Morocco with Peggy Markel's Culinary Adventures—visiting the fish market in Catania for just-caught pesce spada, roasting chestnuts in an open fireplace in Tuscany, cooking with a handful of Berbers in the Atlas Mountains. Vowing to settle down and unpack her suitcase for a while, China returned to Boulder. While she did move into a darling little miner's cabin on one of Boulder back alleyways, she never really stopped moving. Together with Veronica, Nate and Aaron, she founded Meadow Lark Farm Dinners, and began driving Bella, a school-bus-turned-kitchen, to farms around Boulder County. After a wonderful and exhausting inaugural season, China moved to Oregon with Nate, in pursuit of land to grow food and make wine. Now she finally has put down some deep roots: on their property outside of Hood River, Guinea hogs and Dexter cows graze among the vines, and a bountiful, biodynamic garden sits right outside the loveliest double-wide trailer anyone has every stepped foot in. China and Nate are doing amazing things with their land—and if anyone ever wants to see them, they have to make the trek up the Columbia.

Nate Ready. Nate grew up in California's Napa Valley and studied at Pepperdine University while playing trumpet and tuning his palate in a downtown L.A. wine shop. He spent several years as a sommelier at Thomas Keller's renowned restaurant, The French Laundry, and then moved to Boulder to help start Frasca Food and Wine. While at Frasca, Nate earned his Master Sommelier diploma, a feat now accomplished by only 220 sommeliers worldwide. Having earned his stripes in wine service, tasting and theory, Nate took to the field, working in select vineyards and cellars, including Ronco del Gnemiz in Friuli and Rivers-Marie in Napa. Back in Boulder, Nate dreamed up Meadow Lark Farm Dinners with China, Veronica and Aaron, and was part of the expedition that brought Bella from Indianapolis to Boulder through a Midwestern snow storm. In 2008, Nate and China moved to Oregon. Nate joined the team at Antica Terra, and for several years served as general manager for the award-winning winery. Today, Nate and China make their home at The May, their biodynamic farm and vineyard outside of Hood River. As only Nate would do, he is ripping up entire rows of Pinot Gris, grafting Chasselas onto rootstock that once grew Pinot Noir, and researching historic field blends from the Savoie. And with his first two harvests in barrel, he continues to study for his self-certification as an agricultural theorist.

Aaron Hirsh. Aaron is a writer and biologist with strong interests in education and environmental management. He is director of the Vermilion Sea Institute and a research associate in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Colorado—Boulder. His essays have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The International Herald Tribune, various literary periodicals, and The Best American Science Writing. His scientific work has been published in Science, Nature, PNAS, and a number of other journals. His first book, Telling Our Way to the Sea, was published by FSG in 2013 and received a National Outdoor Book Award. Aaron was a founder of the biotechnology company InterCell, serves on the board of Roberts and Company Publishers, and is director of the Vermilion Sea Institute. Sometimes he can be found moonlighting as a dishwasher for Meadow Lark Farm Dinners.

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