On Wednesday afternoon, on my way to the farmers market at the Botanic Garden, I stopped by the Elegant Farmer to pick up a dinner menu. The restaurant, which opened this spring, started serving dinner on Tuesday. It’s now open for lunch and dinner Tuesday through Saturday.
I scanned the menu in the car and was pleased to see these delicious options put together by chef/owner Mac Edwards: duck and sausage etouffee with stone-ground cheese grits; pork chops with spring onion marmalade and turnip, sweet potato, and wild mushroom hash, and an appetizer called “Pulled Pork Arepa,” described as a corn cake with slow-cooked pork, queso fresco, and strawberry barbecue sauce.
A few minutes latter, I ran into Edwards at the farmers market, and I got a kick out of watching him shop for food I’d just seen on the menu. He bought sweet potatoes (curry sweet potato soup), a crate of cauliflower (roasted cauliflower puree), and four shopping bags of curly kale (braised greens). But he couldn’t find sugar snap peas from market vendors.
“I guess I’ll have to get that off the menu,” he said, referring to the sugar snaps served alongside his char grilled Angus steak. “We’ll just have to start using whatever vegetables we can get.”
Edwards said the new dinner menu continues his commitment to seasonal updates with locally sourced ingredients. “We are sticking with the farm-to-table concept, but because we can charge more for dinner entrees, we are using a little more expensive ingredients,” he said.The Elegant Farmer, 262 S. Highland (324-2221)