Hyper-local sourcing trending on menus


Tender green asparagus spears signal that spring is in full swing on restaurant menus. But when you order a plate of jumbo asparagus topped with a poached egg, bacon lardons and brioche croutons at the Century House Tavern in Woodstock, chef Daniel Porubiansky sends another sign of the times.

He wants you to know that the egg came from a Bantam chicken raised by Tim and Nichelle Stewart of Rockin’ S Farms in Canton. This is more than a focus on locally grown. This is what’s being called hyper-local sourcing. Many people today want to know a heck of a whole lot about where their food is being grown. The National Restaurant Association’s annual round up of top 20 menu trends places hyper-local sourcing at No. 7, ranking higher than demand for sustainable seafood (No. 8) and gluten-free cuisine (No. 12).

Menu with a hyper-local view

The ultimate in hyper-local sourcing is when restaurants grow their own right on the property, either in raised beds, on the roof or as part of the landscaping. A short distance from hectic Los Angeles, Terranea Resort in Rancho Palos Verdes, is a welcome oceanfront oasis complete with three swimming pools, a spa, a nine-hole golf course and lush landscaping dotted with edible gardens to supply the resort’s chefs with just-picked produce.

When you savor the Meyer lemon cheesecake with strawberry tomato basil salsa on the menu at Terranea’s Mar’sel restaurant, your dinner comes with a taste of the resort’s fresh picks and a view of Catalina Island. While guests sip cocktails and take in the sunset from the cliffs high above the Pacific’s crashing surf, chefs are busy preparing meals made with a hyper-local grocery basket of leeks, eggplant, parsley, basil, citrus and strawberries harvested on the property. It’s good to know all that southern California sunshine benefits the flowers and the food.

Up on the roof

Ahead of the culinary curve, chef Robert Gerstenecker of the Four Seasons Hotel’s Park 75 restaurant in Atlanta added herbs, vegetables and even honeybees to his roof top Terrace Garden a few years ago. The arugula, kale and green beans are ready now, the peppers are flowering and the heirloom tomatoes have just been planted to ripen in time for summer menus ahead. The hotel’s spa has gone hyper-local too. Honey-based skin treatments utilize the sweet stuff from Gerstenecker’s bees buzzing on the fifth floor terrace.

Carolyn O’Neil is a registered dietitian and author of “The Slim Down South Cookbook.” Email her at carolyn@carolynoneil.com.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Food

Curry Up Now picks first metro Atlanta locations and other dining news from the week
Curry Up Now picks first metro Atlanta locations and other dining news from the week

A popular San Francisco-based Indian chain has chosen its first metro Atlanta locations. Curry Up Now is slated to open at 1555 Church St. by the end of the year, with more locations to follow at Madison Yards on Memorial Drive in Reynoldstown and The Interlock on Howell Mill Road in West Midtown. Franchisee Hemant Suri, who recently sold Midtown Tavern...
Celebrate Oktoberfest with Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest 2018
Celebrate Oktoberfest with Sierra Nevada Oktoberfest 2018

Oktoberfest officially begins on Sept. 22 this year, with Atlanta’s Der Biergarten kicking off its downtown Atlanta celebration at noon on Saturday.  But there will be many more events later this month and into October all around Atlanta, including at Brick Store Pub, New Realm Brewing and Historic Old Fourth Ward Park. And in honor of the...
The Barrelhouse is opening in Old Fourth Ward Monday
The Barrelhouse is opening in Old Fourth Ward Monday

A bar formerly located in Midtown is set to make its debut in Old Fourth Ward next week. The Barrelhouse, which was located at 22 5th St. NW at Tech Square for seven years, is opening Monday in a space previously occupied by Cast Iron, which closed earlier this year. The 2,500 square-foot space will seat 104 guests total, with 68 seats in...
Check out the menu for Ramen Station, now open in Grant Park
Check out the menu for Ramen Station, now open in Grant Park

Ramen Station, the restaurant from the team behind several other Atlanta restaurants, is finally open in Grant Park. The eatery opened its doors yesterday in Larkin on Memorial at 519 Memorial Drive SE in Grant Park. The menu features several starters including steamed buns, skewers, musubi and potato croquettes; five different kinds of ramen with...
Atlanta Bread in Smyrna offers free coffee and pastries, $5 sandwiches through Sunday 
Atlanta Bread in Smyrna offers free coffee and pastries, $5 sandwiches through Sunday 

Atlanta Bread is celebrating a new look at its Smyrna location with a slew of dining deals.   Guests can enjoy $5 flatbread sandwiches today and receive a complimentary cup of soup with any purchase tomorrow, Sept. 22. The aforementioned offers are valid all day. On Sunday, Sept. 23, the first 25 guests in line will receive an Atlanta Bread gift...
More Stories