An emphasis on eating food produced or raised on local farms has become a national trend, hopefully not just a short-lived fad. Restaurants are cropping up all over (pun intended) that feature locally sourced ingredients on the menu. One such spot to open recently in the Kansas City area is The Farmhouse, in the River Market. Though in the same location as the Delaware Cafe, the new owners have eliminated the cavernous feel of the former restaurant by closing off the old dining room and transforming the bar into an attractive eating space. There’s also a shaded patio.
My first venture to The Farmhouse was mixed. My friend and I shared a BLT and the pork sliders, which our waitress said was a popular seller. The BLT was on nicely grilled Farm Fresh bread, and the bacon was thick and crisp. The sandwich was a little light on the “T” part of the equation, but it was just the start of the heirloom tomato season and maybe they were rationing them in the kitchen. The tomato slice I had was juicy and rich with flavor, and an herb aioli was a tasty substitute for the standard mayonnaise dress.
The pork slider was a bit of a disappointment. Billed as pulled pork, this was a bit mushy instead. But the caramelized onions and cherry chutney made up for it. I also tasted the crisp goat cheese salad, atop fresh greens in a citrus vinaigrette. I didn’t check the list of farms on the blackboard to see if the cheese came from Green Dirt Farm, but I wouldn’t be surprised–they are making a big splash right now and can be found all over the metro.
All sandwiches come with fries, and these met my stringent requirements–hand cut, crisp, thin and hot! The only downside was the ketchup. I appreciated that it was homemade, another trend these days, but their version was thin and didn’t have much flavor.
We also indulged in a slice of cherry blackberry pie, which was fabulous. The filling was thick and tasted like a berry patch, and the crust resembled a brown butter cookie.
Other items on the menu include a beet salad, a version of a tomato Caprese salad, a Reuben, a chicken salad sandwich with smoked paprika aioli that caught my eye, and a fried green tomato and goat cheese sandwich. The menu will change according to seasons and whatever is available at the markets, another selling point for those of us who like variety and fresh ingredients.
Executive Chef Mike Faust has cooked in France, Oregon and NYC, including one of my favorite restaurants there, Union Square Cafe. Chef de Cuisine Zeb Humphrey has cooked in the kitchens of 40 Sardines, 1924 Main, and Extra Virgin. With the pedigree of these two guys, I’m expecting great things from them when dinner service starts later this summer.
300 Delaware St.