Fowl & Fodder
7408 W. Central Ave., Toledo
Mon-Sat: Juice Bar 7am-7pm
Mon-Sat: Regular dining: 11am-7pm
Organic. It’s been the latest buzzword flying around for quite some time now. Simply stated, organic means that food is grown and animals are raised without artificial chemicals, antibiotics and the like. Being a budget minded mama, I will admit that to me, organic is synonymous with “expensive.” However, I know there are many health benefits to me and my children when we eat organic foods. My curiosity was piqued when I heard a new restaurant was opening and it was going to be a “farm to table” kind of place with all fresh and organic ingredients. Of course we had to stop in and check it out.
Fowl & Fodder, a restaurant owned by Scott Bowman, opened its doors in mid-July. Located in an unassuming strip mall on Central Avenue near King Rd., their concept is plain and simple. “It is our goal to make real food, from real farms, for real people.” They achieve this goal by supporting local farms with purchases of produce and grass-fed beef while also trading with local artisan cheese makers and local bakeries. There is no “mystery meat,” or mystery behind where the meat came from. They are proud of their local suppliers and list detailed information on their website.
It is a unique niche. I’m not aware of another restaurant in the area with the farm to table concept that follows the lead of Fowl & Fodder regarding the use of organic and local products. I’m not on the organic band wagon, but I do love the idea that their ingredients are from throughout Ohio and they are supporting local farms.
Offerings will please the seasoned palate
The menu has a variety of salads, sandwiches, and soups to choose from and they are all made with unique ingredients. My friend and I had no problem trying items that included ingredients we had never had or even knew what they were, for that matter. The kids, however, were not so daring. There is no children’s menu, so my youngest ordered the grilled cheese made with gruyere cheese and he adamantly refused to try the caramelized onion jam. (Of course, I tried it and it was very tasty). Items such as duck pastrami or duck confit tacos were certainly not a possibility for him. I held my breath, hoping that he’d like the cheese. Sandwiches come with in-house made sweet potato chips or kale chips. The kids cautiously tried them both, but the sweet potato chips won over, hands down.
I enjoyed pork confit tacos with cilantro, cabbage, cracklings, verde and avocado for $10 and I opted for the kale chips. I suppose the “chips” were healthy, but not very filling. But I did feel better knowing I wasn’t consuming heart clogging French fries. My friend enjoyed the roasted vegetable wrap with pistou on a multigrain wrap. Yes, we googled “pistou.” It is a Provencal cold sauce made with garlic, basil, and olive oil. She loved it. My daughter stayed safe with the $9 Cobb salad, despite other options such as tempura meatloaf and Cuban style Panini.
Organic comes with a price
Unfortunately for $8, my son wasn’t filled up on the grilled cheese sandwich and sweet potato chips. Add his fresh squeezed apple juice to his bill and suddenly it wasn’t very cost effective having taken the kids with me on this venture. I won’t lie. I find $4 kids meals very appealing. But hey, I’m a mama on a tight budget.
We each sampled different fresh squeezed concoctions but the smallish cups were $4 and $5. I get it. The fruit was literally squeezed right there at that time and it was 100 percent juice. Certainly the health benefits don’t need to be explained. You are paying for quality not quantity. Most food items on the menu range from $8-$12.50. I will probably stop back at some point and leave the children at home. And hey, that’s okay. I don’t have to take my children everywhere and until they outgrow their love for chicken nuggets and cheeseburgers, I can take them elsewhere.
Karen Zickes is a mom of three active children and freelance writer who resides in Holland, OH.
She can be reached in c/o firstname.lastname@example.org.