Omnivore - Farm-to-table a farmhand can afford

The best deal I've found in a restaurant in quite a while was The Glenwood's first "summer farm dinner" last Monday, Aug. 4. We dined on five very good courses, featuring the produce of Scharko Farms, for $35.

The meal concluded with this "raspberry Napoleon" with lemon-verbena cream, surrounded by a mint moat. I am ultra-picky about raspberries, which seem to be the most abused berry on the planet. There was no abuse here. The raspberries were so flavorful, they rendered everything else on the plate back-up material. But I liked the novel combination with mint.

The fifth course (above right) was slices of medium-rare venison with arugula salad, corn pudding and black berries. Chef Ryan Stewart stopped by our table while we were eating this and waxed eloquently about how deer are eating berries and corn this time of year, so that the plate was like an ode to summer. Then he mentioned that the venison was from New Zealand and, it being winter there now, we wondered if he had not spoiled his ode. He agreed and moved on to another table.

We didn't mind, because the plate, like all others, was delicious no matter who is eating whom this month.

We were especially impressed by the first course — "heirloom tomato water" with cucumber and basil sorbet. I assumed the name was a "food-ism" for tomato juice, but it actually was clear. One of the restaurant managers explained to us that Stewart squeezed the tomato's pulp through a filter, leaving behind the essence of tomato. One complaint only: The tiny bowl's sorbet was almost completely melted when it hit the table. I would have liked a more substantial taste of it.

Check the restaurant's website regularly for other special dinners. By the way, work has begun on The Glenwood's expansion into an adjoining space. Look for a smoke-free space with a wine bar.

(As always, full disclosure requires that we report that Chef Ryan Stewart is married to our cuisine editor, Besha Rodell. But, honestly, this East Atlanta Village gastro-pub is unique in our city.)

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