Patricia is a retired English teacher who at one time ran a baking business from her home.
A Place Your Taste Buds Won’t Forget
If you’ve ever visited the iconic over-55 community in Florida known as The Villages, You probably noticed that every fast food venue ever created has found a home there, along with a bevy of restaurant chains such as Applebee’s, TGI Fridays, Perkins, etc. in addition to many upscale dining establishments. If you’re ever in the area and find yourself in the mood for food that’s organic, farm grown, and absolutely delicious, however, you might want to visit a family-owned food gem known as Bountiful Bistro.
Outdoor Dining: Organic and Delicious
Located-literally-in a field at 27314 County Road in Okahumpka, Florida, Bountiful Bistro is particularly unique in that dining tables are situated outside in a circle under a massive oak tree, while its kitchen and restrooms are situated inside a trailer.
Much of the “bounty” served at the Bistro is grown organically at Bountiful Farms, which opened in 2013. (The Bistro opened on December 4, 2018.) Owners Jessica and Gareth Gentry met when they were attending (what else?) culinary school. The Gentrys went on to work in various restaurants together before establishing the farm and, several years later, the restaurant, which features seasonal crops (120 varieties) grown at the farm. A local pie maker provides the Bistro with desserts.
The Secret: Succulent Food
A look at the menu might be enough to entice you to visit Bountiful Bistro. (Reservations are strongly advised!) The appetizers include, among other tasty offerings, fresh corn chips, heirloom tomato salsa, sweet potato fries and tempura vegetables. One of the many tempting salad offerings is the Fresh and Fruity, which features spinach, lettuces, blueberries, strawberries, cinnamon, and honey roasted pecans served with lemon balsamic vinaigrette. One of the sandwich options is The Beat, which includes smoked bacon, carmalized onions, avocado, lettuce, and heirloom tomatoes served on activated charcoal bread. (I must admit that “activated charcoal bread“ didn’t sound all that appealing, but when I tasted it, I was pleasantly surprised.)
Word has it that two German shepherds, one of whom actually understands German, roam the grounds of Bountiful Bistro. Some of us attempted to address the dogs auf Deutsch, but they didn’t seem to be interested in communicating in a foreign tongue. They were a handsome addition to the outdoor dining experience, though.
If you’d like to take a taste of Bountiful Bistro home with you, a farm stand is conveniently located on the grounds behind the restaurant. According to their website, Bountiful Bistro is open Monday through Saturday, 9-5, from October through May (which marks the end of the growing season).
So…if you’re planning a trip to The Villages, you might want to include a visit (or two) to Bountiful Bistro in your itinerary. Your taste buds will be forever grateful!