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Posted on Feb 18, 2013 in Food | 8 comments

Founding Farmers, Take 2

Happy President’s Day, everyone! I’ve got the day off, and thus have sworn to high heaven that I’ll be making use of my holiday by writing (we’ll see how well that goes), but for those of you who are stuck dredging away the day in the office, I’ve got some mouth-watering photos for ya.

As I mentioned in Friday’s post, I had dinner with my good friend Lauren from Oatmeal After Spinning, and my new friend Kelly from Kelly Fiore Writes on Saturday! Lauren and Kelly are best friends from high school, and while I’ve known Lauren for a while thanks to the mad and lovable world of blogging, I got to meet Kelly for the first time last weekend (at the Frederick Restaurant Week sneak peek).


We dragged our significant others out to dinner to belated celebrate Lauren’s birthday, and to celebrate Kelly’s husband’s birthday. While I was obviously super excited to get to hang out with these lovely ladies (and their equally lovely husbands), I was admittedly a little hesitant as well. See, our dinner destination was the Montgomery County location of Founding Farmers, and some of you may already know that I had a pretty miserable experience at the original Founding Farmers in DC a couple years back. So even though I knew this was an entirely different location, I was still a little bit unsure of how the experience would go.

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Well, I’m happy to report that things went MUCH better this time around! It wasn’t an impeccable dining experience, service-wise, but it was like 10,000 steps up from what I experienced before. And since the food was indeed delicious, and the company was perfect, overall I really did end up having a great time. I started with a glass of Willamette Valley pinot noir (the best!) and we all shared a few of the small plate appetizers from FF’s extensive farm-to-table menu. (Seriously, I spent like 15 straight minutes poring over the menu–so many options that ALL appealed to me!)


The selection of apps included housemade ranch popcorn, bread and dips (including this garlicky green goddess dip that I wanted to spoon directly into my mouth), and spicy pickled carrots. Lauren also ended up getting a thing of skillet corn bread with her meal, which ended up being my favorite thing on the table. Lots of real pieces of corn, and an epic honey butter (which was literally butter and honey combined in one little condiment cup, haha)… mmm, I’m drooling just thinking about it. Regretting not having snagged a picture.


For my meal, I started out with a sample sized Farmer’s Salad, which included romaine, avocado, figs, cherry tomatoes, grapes, slivered almonds, olives, and a bit of parmesan cheese. Yum.


Then, for my entree, I ordered the Lemon Meunière Diver Scallops, which were delicious. I loooove scallops, so it’s pretty hard to screw them up for me, and these were garlicky and lemony and cooked very well.


They were served with a butternut squash risotto in the middle, which ended up only being okay for me. While I loved the concept of the butternut squash in the risotto, there was just something off about the flavor–it had kind of a bitter aftertaste that I wasn’t expecting. Still, overall I enjoyed my plate a lot. And I also enjoyed the bites from Sean’s steak and enchilada dish that I stole, hehehe. Ultimately it was an awesome dinner out with friends, and certainly helped redeem Founding Farmers in my eyes–at least at the Maryland location.

Now I’m off to write! And if you’ll allow me just one li’l shameless plug before we part ways here, I do have a fun announcement: My book, Terra is currently on sale!!

Pick up a digital copy for your Kindle, Nook, Kobo, or iPad/iPhone for just $3.99. Happy President’s Day!


  1. Gretchen – I just finished your book (couldn’t put it down) and LOVED it! Seriously, girl, you have some talent!! I can’t wait til the second book comes out.

    • Thank you SO much, Rachel! That is amazing to hear. 😀

  2. I ❤ Willamette Valley Pinot!

    • Right? The best! I’m going to Oregon at the end of July… hehehehe…

      • Awesome! Can’t wait to read your recaps! I’d love to go vineyard hopping in Oregon and Washington!

  3. Matt and I were just talking about how the service was probably the worst we’ve had there — I think it’s the difference between going on the weekend or on a weekday — which means we need to go again on a weekday! Had a blast — and, of course, your pictures look amazing!

  4. Glad you liked your 2nd experience there. I hate getting dragged to restaurants that I don’t love for get-togethers. It puts me in a grumpy mood, and I’m extra bitchy to the server when they inevitably eff up my order.

    Side note … totally buying your book. I got about 30 pages into 50 Shades and decided it just wasn’t worth it. They need to make rifftrax for books.

  5. Your photos are INCREDIBLE!! Put my iPhone ones to SHAME! 🙂
    I didn’t even realize that you ordered a W.Valley Pinot!! Ahhh! My fave!!! If i ever seen a 2008 on a menu, I order it! Greg and I went there during our honeymoon and visited 6 or 7 wineries and learned ALL about Pinot. Some vineyards offered more than 5 Pinots to taste. I was in HEAVEN!
    Such a good time with you all, and I’m glad it was better than the last experience. 🙂

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