Farm to Plate: Behind the scenes of Hundred Acre Lunch
The Hundred Acre lunches at Rosy Tomorrows Heritage Farm have been featured by the News Press.
Here’s what they had to say (or read the article on the News Press):
By Anne Reed
When visiting Rosy Tomorrows Heritage Farm, the farm to table proof is in the fields around the barn.
(Photo: Andrew West/The News-Press)
- Rosy Tomorrows Heritage Farm hosts guests each Wednesday for the Hundred Acre Lunch.
- The menu for the farm to table lunch highlights beef, chicken, eggs and pork raised in pastures surrounding the barn.
- Produce is harvested the morning of the lunch and used in the entrees and salads.
Morning on the farm is a blur of activity.
Chickens roam their pastured area, an occasional rooster call interrupting their soft clucking. Two turkeys, Tim and Tom, huff and puff their way to the fence, their tail feathers standing at attention as they warn onlookers to stay back.
The squeals of three adult Red Wattle pigs rise from a far off pen, their legs carrying them in a feeding-frenzied scamper toward their newly-delivered breakfast.
And in the large barn, the staff of Rosy Tomorrows Heritage Farm is preparing quiche and tomato pies for the Hundred Acre Lunch.
Held on Wednesdays, the lunch has gained such a following that, according to farm owner Rose O’Dell King, there is more than an 80 percent return rate each week.
Why the popularity?
This is a true farm to table experience.
Preparations for the Wednesday lunches begin the Friday before when the harvest list is announced. King begins brainstorming with local American Culinary Foundation president Chef Scott Boyd, Sous Chef James Nemzin of Harold’s Restaurant and the staff of Rosy Tomorrows Heritage farm to create the lunch menu.
Each Wednesday is a celebration of the bounty of the farm. Heritage Red Wattle pork and heritage breed chickens you can see roaming the fields around the barn are proof that what you are eating is truly from the farm. Produce picked that morning is piled near the door next to pasture raised eggs, waiting for guests to take home a bit of the farm. Loaves of bread, baked the day before, wait to be sliced and slathered in the organic chicken liver pate.
The lunches are also a celebration of the values of the farm, the honest and humane way that all of the animals are raised and the commitment to growing seasonal and often heirloom produce throughout the year. That connection with the land is palpable, part of the energy that draws guests to the farm week after week.And while the lunch days are busy for King and her staff, with the day’s prep starting at 6 a.m., it’s the type of busy that is oh-so-good. The chance to share what they do and the love they have for what they grow and raise makes the long, early hours of the day worth it.As the first guests arrive for the Hundred Acre lunch, the dining room of the barn exudes rustic elegance, the screened windows allowing for sweeping views and the soft sounds of life on the farm. A perfect way to spend a Wednesday afternoon, immersed in the farm to table experience.
Things to Know
- Rosy Tomorrows Heritage Farm was founded by Gary and Rose O’Dell King in 2013 and covers over 100 acres.
- King is committed to raising animals and produce as close to nature as possible, using organic, humane and sustainable farming methods.
- The farm features a herd of 50-plus longhorn cattle; heritage Red Wattle pigs; Black Australorp, Dominique, Silver Laced Wyandotte heritage breed laying hens and Freedom Rangers chickens that are raised without hormones or antibiotics on pasture from sunrise to sunset.
- No chemical fertilizers or pesticides are used on the farm and the produce is seeded, hand-harvested and grown using organic methods. King promotes organic and natural farming and focuses on making healthy soil and ecological systems.
- The animals on the farm are guarded by Sandy, a Rhodesian Ridgeback-German Shepard rescue dog who has found her forever home; two turkeys, Tim and Tom; and three miniature donkeys, Blossom, Margaret, and Humphrey.
If You Go
What: Hundred Acre Lunch
Where: Rosy Tomorrows Heritage Farm, 8250 Nalle Grade Road, North Fort Myers; 233-4888; rosy-tomorrows.com.
When: Wednesdays from 11 a.m.-2 p.m.
Cost: Approximate price range for entrees is $13-16
Other: Reservations are required. Email firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, phone number, number of people in your party and date you would like to attend.