We had the pleasure of experiencing a lunch on the last day of our trip in the heart of Greenwich Connecticut that is about as organic and local as it gets! Meet The Back 40 Kitchen, whose menu includes only the highest quality organic ingredients which means that they source locally so that items are fresh and seasonal. They only use grass fed and grass finished meats, organic beans and grains and organically grown vegetables from their own family farm. Other local farms they support and source from include Hemlock Hill, Hidden Camp Farm, Rolling Stone Sheep Farm, Mountain Rose Herbs, Dancing Dog Farm and several others.
The Back 40 Farm is a family owned business nestled on 75 acres in Washington, Connecticut and their mission is to grow quality organic produce and distribute fresh healthy food to their extended family and community. Their farming goal is to return more to the earth than they take out and to serve as an educational source to generate dialogue about the sustainable food movement. Hats off and bravo!!
The Back 40 Kitchen is their main business however they also run The Back 40 Mercantile which is on South Beach Avenue in Old Greenwich – there’s a boat load of wholesomeness to be found there also. When dining at their restaurant, if you happen to be vegan, vegetarian, gluten free, or have food sensitivities, they have plenty of options. They use high quality oils, vinegars, spices, and natural sweeteners as well.
Scrumptious dinner options include Roasted Pasture-Raised Chicken with Parsnip Puree, Sauteed Kale and Meyer Lemon, Grass-Fed Hangar Steak with Potatoes, Onions & Black Garlic, Roasted Wild Hake with Stewed White Beans & Citrus Brown Butter, Pasture-Raised Pork Chop with Honey Glazed Rutabaga, Roasted Apples and Cider Sauce, Pan-Seared Sea Scallops with Roasted Parsnips, Celery Root, Cabbage & Mustard and Red Quinoa and Roasted Vegetables with Coconut Milk Curry.
Behind the menu is the man who runs the kitchen, executive chef George Demarsico. After years stewarding kitchens from Martha’s Vineyard to Bedford NY, George is now committed to The Back 40 Kitchen, where he works closely with every farm, purveyor and food source, especially the Back 40 farmers to design an ingredient-driven and seasonal menu that changes regularly.
Since we weren’t there at night, we sampled some of the lunch options, although there were several dishes we didn’t try, largely because we had been eating non-stop for the previous four days. How about their Maryland Crab Cakes with coleslaw and house made spicy aioli, the Chicken Liver Mousse with onion jam, Hen of the Woods Mushrooms with black garlic and bacon (YUM!!) or their Pasture Raised Pulled Pork Sandwich with slaw? You can’t go wrong with any of them.
We kept things light and ordered their scrumptious curried butternut squash and cabbage soup which was so delicious, we ordered a second. We also tried their Beet, blue cheese and pistachio butter salad with a fig balsamic vinaigrette. Two other great salads worth trying are their Anjou Pear Salad with greens, Alpine cheese, pecans and cranberries, and their Vegan Caesar Salad with kale and chickpeas, which they toss in a Hemp Caesar dressing. You can add grass fed steak, bacon, scallops, shrimp or poached egg to any of the salads of your choice.
Julissa opted for a Pasture Raised Bacon Grilled Cheese sandwich on grain bread with her soup which she happily finished. They make cold housemade iced tea, Matcha Green tea, Mint lemonade and French Press Coffee (I’m a huge fan). Also on the menu is a variety of loose leaf teas, including Chocolate Mint Mate (so delish!!), Chamomile, Mint, Hibiscus, Lemon, traditional Black and Green tea.
The restaurant staff and owners Lesley and Bill King have a huge commitment to sustainability which we applaud. They only source fish from wild, sustainable docks, only buy in season organic produce from local farms, only use Himalayan Pink Salt or pure sea salt, only use organic spices, dried herbs and teas and only use organic coconut oil and organic extra virgin olive soils. Everything is made from scratch using organic non-GMO ingredients, their sauces and stocks are bone broth reductions and they never use bouillon or artificial flavors or thicken sauces or dredge meats with flour.
Two thumbs up!