A celebration of love & love of food

Even the Rabbi knows this wedding is as much about food as it is about love.

Even the Rabbi knows this wedding is as much about food as it is about love.

He is standing with Miriam Streiman and Neil Epstein under a canopy in front of a pond that flows into the Don River. The bride’s grandfather’s prayer shawl and cattails from the couple’s new farm are draped on top of the chuppah.

Today, Rabbi Ed Elkin says, is a celebration of Streiman and Epstein’s commitment and love for each other, but also of “food that is delicious, healthy and good for the environment.”

The guests smile. A few chuckle softly. Streiman, 30, and Epstein, 31, love food. There really is no overstating that.

And so, their wedding is about fresh, local food, country living, family, and the Jewish faith, perfectly packaged together in an old industrial building at the Evergreen Brick Works, along the Don Valley.

Birds chirp and bees buzz at the old brickyard, which has been turned into a community environment centre but still has faded bricks and shattered windows. Fruits trees and tomato plants are tagged for sale nearby.

The ceremony begins with a rollicking stroll down the aisle to an alt-bluegrass band playing Johnny Cash’s Ring of Fire. It ends with a smashed glass, shouts of “Mazel Tov!” and a long, luscious kiss.

While the bride and groom slip away for photos, the guests direct their attention to the food. They mingle over bread, cured duck and pork, sheep’s milk cheeses and fruit laid out on tables covered in burlap sacks.

Food has always been a central part of Streiman and Epstein’s relationship.

Streiman says Epstein wooed her with raspberries and award-winning garlic from his family farm in Pefferlaw, Ont. And she describes, in sensual detail, pulling beets and carrots out of the earth in preparation for one of their first meals together on that farm, soil clinging to the vegetables and their hands.

Streiman, cooks using instinct, touch and feeling. “Cooking together, and sharing a table together, is how we show love,” she says.

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