By Miriam Raftery
March 4, 2017 (La Mesa) – I come from a farming family, so I’ve looked forward to sampling the farm-to-table fresh cuisine at Farmer’s Table in La Mesa. The restaurant lives up to its pledge of “honest food done right” with locally grown, organic vegetables and an array of tasty dishes to savor.
The restaurant is located at 8141 La Mesa Blvd. La Mesa in the space formerly occupied by Sanfillipo’s Pizza. The space has been completely redone using 80% reclaimed materials, from a 1930s tractor to vintage woods, as well as a sunflower mural, wallpaper, cheery blue chairs, and light fixtures with Einstein bulbs.
The expansive space includes heated outdoor seating as well as indoor seating with street views, an inviting bar and private dining room. There are some special spaces—such as several tables with vintage vehicles as bases and an outdoor group table made from a tractor tire topped with glass.
I’ve stopped in twice now and both times, the food was great. First I sampled a ratatouille risotto cooked with wine, rice and seasonal vegetables, as well as an appetizer of pear ricotta bruschetta and a glass of Valpolicella, an Italian red wine. The ratatouille wasn’t a traditional French stew but was warm and satisfying with plenty of fresh squash and creamy risotto.
On my second visit, for lunch, I had a kale salad with butternut squash, an excellent spinach soup and a tangerine mimosa as an added treat. My companion had a tasty pecan-crusted chicken sandwich.
It’s great to find a place that offers up a wide variety of healthy and tasty foods. I look forward to coming back and trying pizzas cooked up in a wood-fired pizza oven imported from Italy (a wonderful find for those missing the site’s former Italian restaurant). There are also hearty dinner dishes such as duck gnocchi, game of the day, short ribs, bouillabaisse, steak and pork chops.
The experience was wonderful except for one thing: noise. Going with a lofty ceiling may look rustic but it was hard to carry on a conversation, plus tables were crowded close together. My suggestion is to lose the tractor and move a few tables into that space, giving a little more room between tables to assure private conversations, and consider adding some insulated tiles on the ceiling. A couple of booths or some chairs with higher padded backs for those of us with back/neck troubles would also be welcome additions.
There is a large booth for parties of six or more, with a dropped ceiling for quieter dining. Next time, I plan to bring a few friends!
Farmer’s Table serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. It’s open seven days a week, another plus. You can check out their menus or make reservations at https://www.farmerstablelamesa.com/ or call 619-724-6465.