Today I finally made it to Farm Boy Fresh in Malvern.
“Don’t take my picture!” he said “Look at this apron!”
Oh Chef, the thing is this, pristine aprons to me mean y’all aren’t having fun creating your food. (Besides, I am the home cook who can kill an apron almost as soon as I put it on!) So a little smudge of something on your apron is a good thing.
I have been wanting to get to Farm Boy Fresh and as today is Thursday, it was chicken basket day, so instead of just writing about how amazing everything looks, I went for a little look see myself. (I wrote about them earlier this month.)
Yes, seriously, we have a classically trained chef who trained with people like Emeril Lagasse right here in Chester County. Living his best life with his wife on their lovely farm and cooking breakfast and lunch….inside the Sunoco Station at Routes 30 and 29 in Malvern. Yes, where Three Crazy Ladies was.
While there, Chef Paul Marshall was telling me about the chicken he uses when he was preparing my order and a couple of others. He uses Poulet Rouge. I had not heard of that type of chicken in years. As in I saw them on a farm once in France when I was like 14. They are a russet red chicken with long legs and a bare neck. Seriously. I realized those were the chickens I saw ummm…. decades ago.
I did a little reading when I got home and these chickens do indeed have longer legs and they are less round than some chicken breeds can be. They are known for their flavor and apparently they have thinner skin. I actually found a farm down south that raises them and you can buy them and other heritage poultry and meats from (Joyce Farms).
I am not sure if this is where the chicken today came from, but the chicken I had today was so good it was like a religious experience. Did you ever have lunch that smelled so good and looked so good that it was like there was no time for social media and food photos and you just ate a meal without taking it’s photo? You know the way it used to be before we were Instagramming, Tweeting, or Facebooking?
That was today.
The chicken was hot, juicy, and fresh and there was that lovely fluffiness of perfectly cooked chicken that had not only a good dredge with flavor, but buttermilk. And a little bit of a flavor profile that gave it just a little reminiscence of a kick but not spicy. Super subtle. Served with the chicken was this slaw that I am guessing was Napa cabbage (my favorite) and I am not sure all what else, but it had Asian influences and seemed to be more of a vinaigrette and essentially I could have dined on that alone it was so good.
I also bought a yummy blueberry chia muffin, chocolate chip cookies, and a jar of hot pepper jelly.
You know what else I liked? I got to hang out and talk to the chef. I have a friend from high school who is a chef (Carlo DeMarco of 333 Bellrose in Radnor), and have met others over the years through friends and family and they are a lot of fun to speak with.
Since I like to cook, I like to learn, and all of the chefs I have met are happy to talk food and share. Chef Paul Marshall is no exception. He was so nice and very interesting and I also loved hearing him speak about his wife Julie who apparently grew up in the area. That was awesome. You have to totally and immediately appreciate and respect someone who obviously adores their spouse, and their eyes light up when they speak of them.
My friend Sherry Tillman, who created First Friday Main Line and owns Past*Present*Future in Ardmore can tell you that I am a food geek. Whenever we were doing out food events years ago like Foodapalooza, she always knew she had someone to go to the participating restaurants and photograph the food and chefs and speak with them. That is my idea of fun.
Soon at Farm Boy Fresh there will be amazing high boy farm style tables so you can eat in and not just take out. It is totally quirky to have an amazing chef cooking in a gas station, but you know what? That juxtaposition just works. This is fun.
Farm Boy Fresh is a welcome addition to the lunch and breakfast places in Chester County. It’s so great to meet someone that just loves what they do.
Go get yourself some breakfast or lunch. Farm Boy Fresh is located at the Sunoco at 7 Lancaster Avenue in Malvern (the corner of Route 30 and Lancaster Ave in East Whiteland Township)
I will note for the record that I was not compensated for this review. I went in to buy lunch and I will be back! I am Farm Boy Fresh hooked!