Farm to Ladle

Address: 675 Ponce de Leon Ave NE, Suite N140, Atlanta, Georgia 30308 (Ponce City Market/Midtown)
Website: www.farmtoladle.com
Cost: $-$$
Atmosphere: Very casual, Take-out, No seating - eat in PCM Food Hall

It may be getting cold outside, but the food hall at Ponce City Market (PCM) is hot! Ashley and I visited Farm to Ladle, which was one of the earliest restaurants to open in this new and popular destination for in-town Atlantans. Farm to Ladle occupies a smallish space near the West Elm store and offers breakfast, lunch and dinner. In addition to its weekly-changing menus, Farm to Ladle offers prepared salads, sandwiches, packaged soups, and half-sour pickles.

Stone Ground Grit Bowl (pick your own toppings)

Let’s start with the morning fare. For breakfast, I ordered the stone ground grit bowl. The grits come with yellow cheddar, and although I’m not normally a fan of cheese grits, Farm to Ladle is using high quality, flavorful grits so you can taste the corn flavor and aren’t overpowered by the mild cheese. The grits were served at a perfect temperature; warm and comforting and ready to eat right away. With the grits, you can choose up to four toppings. Although it’s not clear from the menu or the space what exactly the topping choices are, once you ask the friendly staff, you learn that the grit-bowl toppings are the same as omelette and oatmeal toppings, so if you like golden raisins and brown sugar in your cheese grits, Farm to Ladle is the place for you. I chose my toppings from the omelette station: bacon, spinach, mushrooms, and onion. Unfortunately, the raw red onion was a bit strong. Since the onion touches the pan at least briefly in an omelet, it might be good for omelettes, but I found the red onions a poor choice for cheese grits. The mushroom, bacon, and spinach were all great. If I could go back, I would order a double order of mushrooms, bacon and spinach. At $6.99, I can’t say that the grit bowl is a bargain, but you do get a substantial portion of grits for a filling breakfast. I would definitely order this dish again (without the raw red onion).

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Veggie Omelet with Hash Browns 

Ashley chose the vegetable omelet with hash browns for her opener. Farm to Ladle could improve its delivery and service, because her omelet came out with no hash browns, which Ashley had chosen as her side from a group of four options. Farm to Ladle managed to lose the hash brown order, and although the situation was remedied, Ashley’s meal was considerably delayed and her omelet was no longer hot by the time the full meal made it to the table.

Lunch Trio : Three Bean Salad, Green Veggie Hoagie, Green Gazpacho

When I returned for lunch, I chose a salad, half sandwich, and a soup. Farm to Ladle offers “trio specials” that allow you to sample several items. If you order the trio, unless you’re really hungry, you’ll likely have a little extra for leftovers. For my trio, I ordered the three bean salad, green veggie hoagie, and green gazpacho. The bean salad was composed of chickpeas, black-eyed peas, and green beans with a good bit of vinegar in it, perhaps a bit too much. On the whole, the salad lacked flavor and would not be a dish I would endorse.

The bread on the hoagie was good, but the sandwich lacked flavor. I really didn't get much flavor from the grilled zucchini or the guacamole. Perhaps Farm to Ladle should use a less substantial bun or add more filling, because this sandwich is not one I would order again.

I almost skipped the green gazpacho because it looks like tomatillo salsa you would see served up with a bag of tortilla chips at a local California burrito restaurant. However, the depth of flavor of this cold soup goes well beyond the tomatillos in the dish. According to the sign, the gluten free, vegan gazpacho contains tomatillo, green peppers, cucumbers, jalapeno, green grapes, garlic, citrus juice, vinegar, salt and pepper. It was interestingly sweet as vegetables such as sweet potatoes can have a sweetness to them, and I have to assume that the green grapes added some natural sugar. The gazpacho is interesting and flavorful and warrants a visit to Farm to Ladle. I cannot say I’ve ever had a dish quite like it. The flavors are blended together well, and it can be really hard to pick out the individual ingredients; for example, I would never have guessed it has jalapenos in it, as I did not get any notes of heat.

Overall, Farm to Ladle is a good option for a quick, healthy, satisfying meal. I hope that with time Farm to Ladle will improve its service and refine its menu options to its best dishes, because they definitely have some dishes that qualify as fresh, healthy and delicious.