Fast and Fresh Times at Georgia's Farm-to-Market Downtown
Photos by Christina Uticone
Note: I wrote this entry before learning that Georgia Bost of Georgia's Farm to Market had passed away. I was sad to hear that, and she seems like an awesome lady.
My best friend and his wife were visiting this past week from St. Cloud, Minnesota, and when they come to Houston the only thing they want to do is go out to eat -- for every meal. Apparently there is a lack of amazing dining opportunities in St. Cloud. After six days of Tex-Mex, seafood (with plenty of butter), barbecue, pizza, burgers and many, many, many drinks, I was officially sick of food. So sick of food I couldn't even look at it anymore, but still -- a girl's gotta eat. Unfortunately, we didn't have a thing left in the house, unless you count a half jar of pepperoncini and the three cases of PBR my friend left behind after returning home to Minnesota. In need of a few groceries and some semblance of a lunch, I headed downtown to Georgia's Farm-to-Market.
I was hankering for a sandwich, but there were only egg and tuna salad to be had, neither of which is my favorite. I liked the look of the Veggie Wrap ($5) that comes with a fresh fruit side and a piece of some sort of raisin cake-like thing. I also grabbed a small portion of pasta salad ($3) just for the heck of it.
When I picked up the wrap, I didn't notice that it contained Vegenaise. You guys know how I feel about mayonnaise, so I was a little bit scared. I was surprised at how sweet it tasted, and while it's not moving to the top of my condiment list, I found it edible. The spinach wrap was stuffed full of fresh, crisp vegetables: spicy and sweet red and green peppers, sweet shredded carrot and spicy/earthy sprouts, plus light spears of cucumber. For a person who needed to eat but didn't want to eat, this was just what the doctor ordered. After a while the Vegenaise got too sweet for me, though, so I ended up eating the vegetables out of the middle of the wrap. I think it's definitive -- I don't like any of the "aise"-es. I just made that a thing.
The pasta salad was good, if a tad on the mushy side, but that's one of those "can't help it" problems with a prepackaged pasta salad. There is a lot of yummy cheese mixed in with the pasta and the fresh carrots and crunchy bell peppers; black olives and chopped pepperoncini add a salty kick. I hid the leftovers in the back of the fridge so my husband wouldn't eat them. (This salad was just as good on day two as it was on day one -- it holds up really, really well!)
I found the little raisin cake-thing compelling, if a bit confusing. It's pleasantly sweet but not overly so, and in taste it somewhat resembles a coffee cake, but the texture is that of a very wet, very dense sponge. Not unpleasant, but unusual, to say the least. It wasn't my favorite thing about the meal, but a few bites with a cup of coffee was a nice enough way to round out this lunch.
I like Georgia's, and even through the early "working out the kinks" period, overall this place has been a great addition to downtown. (Have you had the bison chili? It's fab.) I would love to see the more-affordable grab-and-go options expanded a bit -- maybe a few more kinds of sandwiches? -- a change that would probably bump this place to the very top of my "downtown destinations" list.
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