Posted by: KStrate | October 7, 2008

Farm 255: the best restaurant in Athens

OK, it’s a strong statement, but I believe it.

Unfortunately, I don’t have any pictures to document my wonderful experience at Farm 255, but I’m hoping I can paint pictures with words for you.

If you don’t know the history of Farm 255, its namesake is due to the restaurant’s farm right outside of Athens where little piggies, chickens, cows, veggies and other things are grown.  In other words, everything served in the restaurant is either grown on the “Farm” or another local Athens farm.

Such a cool concept.

Farm is located on West Washington Street, right behind Clocked.  I would really like to ask someone about the building it’s in.  The ceiling is lofted, and it almost has a barn-like feel.  The colors inside are warm; there are pictures of the farm; and the day’s harvest is drawn on a chalkboard to the right of the front door.

A side note: there is a picture of a pig that I could NOT take my eyes off when I was eating.  I swear. It’s the cutest thing I’ve ever seen in my life. Look for it when you go.

I went to eat at Farm with my parents, Tom and Kelle.  We made reservations, so we were immediately seated when we came in.

It didn’t take long for a server to bring bread to our table and ask for drinks. The kind of bread (they have different varieties) we got is made from the leftover hops at Terrapin Brewery, so it’s kind of sweet. I think it’s the best bread I’ve ever had. Holy cow.

Mom and I ordered a wonderfully delicious cucumber and pomegranate martini, and Dad ordered a gin drink. Their cocktail menu is extremely interesting.  I think it’s the most diverse menu I’ve ever seen.  Take a look.

Since they raise everything on the farm, they serve what they’ve got.  That means it is a very seasonal restaurant with not as an extensive menu as, say, Applebees.  Never fear, Dawg Food fans.

There were about five entrees listed on our menu, but it was nice to know Mom’s chicken wasn’t shot full of steroids and hadn’t been in a freezer for a couple of months.  I wonder what the “animal turnaround” is.  Maybe one day from the farm to the table?  That’s a question I will have to ask them.

For an appetizer, we ordered a cast-iron raclette. It was a little cast iron skillet with a slice of melted, strong, oh-so-pungent-but-wonderful French cheese in the middle, and was accompanied by homemade pickled okra and green beans.  I had never had pickled green beans, but they were fabulous. The skillet also came with little toasties to put the cheese on.

If you partner the pickles with the cheese, the vegetable balances the pungency of the cheese.  You’ll like it. Trust me.

For dinner, I ordered the vegetable plate; Mom ordered the chicken, and Dad ordered the spaghetti bolognese (bow-long-ney-sey).

I’ll let them describe it to you:

veggie plate
Full Moon eggplant caponata, pink-eyed pea salad, grilled Full Moon okra,
hummus & lavash, heirloom sweet potato fries   15

Full Moon pork & lamb bolognese
cappellini, Grana Padano    16

Full Moon pasture-raised chicken
grilled half chicken, sweet potato purée, Alice’s green beans, grilled okra   21

Um, I will say it was the BEST veggie plate I’ve EVER had.  The hummus was a little garlicky, but everything else was so incredibly fabulous.

Mom said it was the best chicken she’s ever had. It seriously fell right off the bone. At one point, she wasn’t eating her food, and Dad and I went right for her plate at the same time. Apparently she wasn’t done, so she smacked both of our hands. I’ll never do that again. 🙂

Dad’s pasta was amazing.  I was so puzzled at the large amount of meat in the spaghetti, but it was very light in your mouth. Does that make sense?

It was so, incredibly full of flavor. You could taste each spice, and I don’t think it needed (or had) a sauce. The oil and juices from the meat were enough.

A comment on the service: they are sooo nice!  I’ve said before that it’s hard to get good, friendly people to serve you in Athens, but our waitress was, truly, the NICEST waitress I’ve had in Athens. You know those people who are just genuinely caring and, well, nice?  Yeah, that was her.  So, thank you for making our experience even better than it was!

Guys and gals, I will have pictures another time because I know I’ll go back to Farm. I have also heard from reliable sources that the Sundee (yes, I said Sundee) brunch is the best in town.

Moral of this culinary story: Try Farm. Come back. Tell us what you think.

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Responses

  1. I have completely disagreed with this blog’s reviews of both trax and taqueria del sol.

    I could not agree with this review more.

    I’ve eaten at every eatery in town. Some better than others. Some more bang for the buck.

    Farm does cost a couple bucks… My girlfriend stated proudly, “Most expensive meal I’ve ever bought!”

    I remember my biggest ticket too! (Table in Asheville, NC…awesome!)

    All that said, I whole heartedly agree. Farm 255 is the best food joint in the classic city. I visited recently and it seemed like the chef had just finished the book Charcuterie. Pates, Terrines, Sausages! A brilliant fall menu!

    I settled on the celeriac soup with duxelles apple croutons, badass. For my main, i chose the pork two ways, a ham and seared belly with spoonbread and i think a braised cabbage? Everything was remarkable.

    Bottom line i suppose…I’m a chef in town and that meal made me want to wash dishes in that beautiful open kitchen just to admire the chef’s work.

    keep it up chefs at farm!
    nick

    p.s. cocktail with the basil vodka and the watermelon puree was awesome!

  2. Thanks for your comments, Nick! I’m glad you disagree with me on some posts because everyone has different experiences everywhere. That’s what Dawg Food is for!

    Are you talking about the Starfish cocktail? Oh yes, I’ve enjoyed that one many times. I actually called to get their recipe, and I’ll post it soon! It’s really interesting how they infuse their own vodka, but I enjoyed learning about it. There are also some good Web sites if you want to learn how to do it on your own.

    Happy Holidays!


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