Farmers know this by heart: nothing compares to biting into a fruit or vegetable moments after it was harvested.
“You can taste the difference, as opposed to something that’s been sitting for a week or two,” said Emil Breitenbach, who is preparing to open Breitenbach Farms in Aquebogue for the season next month with some new additions.
He’s kept busy over the winter coming up with new plans for the farm, now in its fourth year.
The first is a simple way to share farm-fresh ingredients with hungry customers through the Greenhouse Café, slated to open within the farm stand by the end of May.
The simple menu will consist of paninis and soups using their vegetables, fancy and grilled PB&J sandwiches (there are a whopping 20 jam options), veggies and dips, apple cider donuts as well as freshly squeezed lemonade with in-season berries and locally roasted coffee.
“I want to incorporate as many of our products as I can, and not just the vegetables,” Mr. Breitenbach said. “We have so many things that complement each other and I want to put it all together.”
When tomatoes are in season, he plans to offer an open faced heirloom tomato sandwich with their cucumber dill spread grilled on a panini press. Other menu items include vegetable soups, a Long Island three-potato soup and more summery items like a chilled peach soup.
Mr. Breitenbach is hoping to source local, artisan bread and said warmed-up pies will also be available by the slice due to popular demand.
He’s still putting the finishing touches on the food prep areas and plans to add picnic tables to the rear of the farm stand, where they opened their first U-pick pumpkin patch last fall.
Before it’s time for pumpkins again, that space will also be used for yoga classes hosted by Mr. Breitenbach’s girlfriend, Steph Visek, and a trellised flower “dome” they’ve planted alongside more than a dozen varieties of cut flowers. “People are always asking for bouquets,” Mr. Breitenbach said.
The bouquets will be available at the farm stand and also as part of their new 20-week Community Supported Agriculture program set to begin in June.
“I wanted to make it as customizable as possible,” Mr. Breitenbach said.
There are three tiers to the CSA program ranging from $20 to $35 per week and all come with a 10% discount on additional items at the farm stand. CSA members can also add on a variety of products like chicken or duck eggs, honey, flowers, fresh mozzarella, pies and their jarred items. Local delivery within Riverhead Town is also available for a small fee.
The farm stand, located at 460 Main Road in Aquebogue, is set to open May 6, just before Mother’s Day. The café will open a few weeks after. For more information, follow @breitenbach.farms and @the.greenhousecafe on Instagram for updates and menus.