Just a few miles west of the intersection of Routes 1 and 26 are the small towns of Ocean View and Clarksville. These inland areas are undergoing rapid growth, and Susan Ryan and her family have watched the development from their organic farm, Good Earth, a scenic oasis now surrounded by communities and shopping centers.
A familiar presence at area farmers markets, Good Earth also has an on-site grocery store with healthy packaged foods and household items. But more recently, residents and vacationers have been heading to Good Earth for its bar, barista and breakfast, lunch and dinner menus.
The café, which joined the venture in 2012, was originally leased by a third party. Ryan took it over two years ago and hired well-known chef Nino Mancari, who has worked at Salt Air and Liquid Assets.
Photos by Kim Bemis
Not surprisingly, the menu features fruit smoothies with chia seeds, chai with almond milk and avocado toast.
But you might also find a creamy seafood chowder with bacon, shrimp and grits with aged chorizo and the popular turkey sandwich, which includes avocado, Havarti cheese, lettuce, tomato, sprouts and mayonnaise.
Diners can eat in the cozy café or at the 13-seat bar, which was added last August. The barista counter is also in this section. “It does double-duty,” Ryan says. On weekends, many people stop in for happy hour. There is a cocktail menu with specialty drinks.
When the weather allows, take a seat on the patio. “In spring, everyone loves it because the garden just comes alive,” Ryan says. “Some people come here just to walk through the garden.”
Like what you see? Book a room. Ryan, who previously had a home construction company, is putting the finishing touches on a two-bedroom rental cottage, which should be available on Airbnb by Memorial Day. A loft and a small one-bedroom house on the property are already on Airbnb.
Photo by Kim Bemis
Not only can you honeymoon at Good Earth, but you can also get married here. There is a new bathhouse with cedar shake siding and toilets near the “wedding field,” so brides no longer need to rent a bathroom trailer.
Despite all the expansion, the market remains a mainstay. (Peruse the wares while waiting for your food.)
The bar cut into the old market space, but wood shelves—rescued from a closed South Moon Under store—has allowed Ryan to offer more products in less space. “I don’t know how we lived without them,” Ryan says. The coastal area might say the same about Good Earth Market & Organic Farm.
If you want to experience all that Good Earth has to offer, consider booking a seat for the four-course Tensley wine dinner on Thursday, March 28, beginning at 6:30 p.m. Courses include quail, cooked under a brick, with stone fruit mostarda and lamb and lentils. The cost is $75 per person.
Good Earth Market
31806 Good Earth Lane, Route 26, Clarksville • 537-7100