If ramps are popping up by you, you’re lucky. If stories about ramps are popping up by you… that’s food media for you, with the picking of the wild onions marking the official beginning of spring menus in Chicago. Serious Eats Chicago and Zagat both offered guides to where to find ramps on menus right now. But our favorite piece so far is Matt Kirouac at The Local Beet talking about one of the farmers who brings ramps to town— Tim Burton (no relation to that one), who sells maple syrup from Indiana at the farmer’s markets. He was just in town selling them at Publican Quality Meats to many local chefs, and Kirouac fills in how he got in the business:
Four years ago, Burton had no idea what a ramp was. The fact that he was surrounded by ramps every spring was unbeknownst to him. That’s sort of like having the key to the U.S. Mint and never using it. So one year he received an email from Mark Psilos from Green City Market, inquiring if he knew of a source for ramps. Since Burton presumed Psilos wasn’t looking for inclined platforms, he researched what a ramp was, and realized that he had been surrounded by ramps all along.