Atlanta’s dining scene got the memo on farm fresh years ago. In fact, the farm-to-table trend now extends beyond restaurants and into home kitchens. This way of eating is so popular that it’s tough to decipher one CSA (community-supported agriculture, that is) box from a bag of locally made granola, so here’s my skinny on the best artisan eats when in the A.
For the ever-popular CSA box filled to the brim with seasonal fruit and veggies, sign up for Moore Farms and Friends. With loads of pickup locations and boxes filled with goodies, this is not only tasty, but also convenient. If you’d rather load up the cart yourself but abhor the big box grocery experience, head to The Boxcar Grocer in Castleberry Hill. This healthy general store is run by siblings Alphonzo and Alison Cross, who sell everything from pantry goods, like cans of tomatoes and gluten-free flour, to locally sourced produce, meats and dairy. It also has a killer prepared foods section with delicious grab-and-go items.
Eating local isn’t exclusive to things pulled from the ground. Atlanta has plenty of choices for locally sourced meats as well. From the same folks behind the ever-popular Farm Burger, Moonshine Meats is the best spot to get grassfed and pastured meat. If I need something more of the charcuterie variety, I stock up at either the Spotted Trotter in Kirkwood or the Pine Street Market just outside of Decatur in Avondale Estates. Both offer gorgeous salamis, sausages and other cured deliciousness.
Long before Greek yogurt became synonymous with healthy eating, Atlanta Fresh Artisan Creamery was making hormone-free flavors of the thick, yummy stuff. In addition to its yogurts, Atlanta Fresh sells salad dressings and frozen versions at area Whole Foods and farmers markets.
If you want to give your veggies and meats a pinch of something special, I adore salts from Beautiful Briny Sea. With cheeky names like Magic Unicorn (a savory blend of flavors like paprika and lemon that can be used on everything), Beautiful Briny Sea’s salts have a luring effect. But beware: this stuff is addictive.
Restaurant Eugene proprietor/chef Linton Hopkins knows a thing or two about yeast. His breads are the best in the city and he supplies to many markets and restaurants in the city. Once you make an egg salad sandwich on his sourdough, the stuff on grocery store shelves will pale in comparison.
Photos courtesy of Dana Seith and Boxcar Grocer