Amid Korean barbecue, kombucha and franchised pizza restaurants on Baxter Street sits Farm Cart, a small farm-to-table breakfast and lunch spot that specializes in locally-sourced biscuit sandwiches.
The Farm Cart brand, which opened its Baxter storefront in May 2019, got its start as a food truck in early 2015, store owner Iwalani Farfour said. The original goal of the Farm Cart food truck was to go to the farmers market and feed breakfast to market-goers.
The owners of Farm Cart own their own farm, as Farfour, who has been-culinarily inclined since she was little, is a farmer herself. She was in the horticulture field for about 10 years after college and loved working with plants. She then chose to go to the University of California Santa Cruz and take their Organic Farming Apprenticeship program.
“That kind of spurred the whole farming thing, but I have always had a love of plants, so it kind of started there,” Farfour said.
Along with Farfour’s farming expertise, her husband Michael is the head cook at Farm Cart, and her mother became a baker once she moved to Athens. Together, the three have brought their talents together at the restaurant in order to create something special.
The Farfours own Full Moon Farms and are members of Collective Harvest, which practices community supported agriculture, in which consumers commit to receiving weekly produce from farmers and the farmers commit to provide the food for them weekly.
Most of the food served at Farm Cart is locally produced and grown, as the ingredients are bought from local farmers and purveyors, such as Anderson Farms, Pastures of Rose Creek, Red Mule Farms, Piedmont Provisions and others.
“What stands our biscuits apart is that I think we are the only people in Georgia using organic flour,” said Farfour. “It is very important to us to be farm-to-table and our values are in organics, so it was a really big push for us to be able to support local wheat growers.”
The menu at Farm Cart is diverse, ranging from buttermilk breakfast biscuit sandwiches to lighter fare like sourdough bagels and vanilla yogurt with homemade granola. The restaurant offers a small lunch menu with locally-sourced beef burgers, gluten-free grilled cheeses and pulled pork sandwiches. The restaurant also serves 1000 Faces Coffee and alcohol to provide “many facets of the day where people can come,” Farfour said.
Farm Cart prides itself on its organic and house-made ingredients, Farfour said. They locally source their meats, all of their vegetables and all of their flour. They also house-make all of their jams and many other elements of their menu.
“A lot of our stuff we make from scratch so we try and use the best ingredients that we can,” Farfour said.
Along with selling food at their restaurant and from their food truck, Farm Cart also offers catering in the form of dozen packs of fresh or frozen biscuits and is available at the Athens Farmers Market on Saturdays between March and December.
KJ Wynter, an employee who has worked at Farm Cart since May 2019, said working at the restaurant exposes him to all types of faces in Athens.
“Working here, I see people from downtown and people from all over the area and build a repertoire with them, but also, I get to learn more about them and Athens,” Wynter said. “It’s only my second year living here so it’s really nice to get a taste of all of the different mediums.”
Alongside fostering and nurturing a sense of community, Farm Cart also aims to provide an atmosphere where the customer feels relaxed and comfortable.
“You’re at ease, the music is calm, you can talk to your family, nobody is in your face,” Wynter said of the restaurant. “You can breathe.”