Arbor Farms Market Offers Quick, Clean Eats

. August 27, 2016.
sandwich

Arbor Farms Market

2103 W. Stadium | Ann Arbor, MI 48103
Hours: 9am-8pm daily | salad bar and sandwich counter
8am-9pm daily | whole store
(734) 996-8111 | arborfarms.com

For most families, September means back to school. It also means back to crazy weeknights brimming with homework and activities. That’s why it is timely to check out Arbor Farms Market this month. Busy families can benefit from learning about its organic salad bar, sandwich bar, and takeaway options.

Eat locally

Arbor Farms has operated in Ann Arbor since 1979. At first, my family of four was confused,  why we were dining there?  It is not a restaurant, but a specialty market offering organic and local produce, Michigan grass-fed beef and a gourmet deli. Their confusion quickly turned to delight upon walking in the corner entrance nearest Stadium Boulevard. A large salad bar and sandwich counter greeted us. There were also cases of takeaway grub with items like orange teriyaki tofu bites and apricot orzo pasta salad. An in-store dining room by the windows offered a place to sit.

We stepped up to the sandwich counter where Arbor Farm uses only natural meats without preservatives ($6.99 per sandwich). From the Build-Your- Own menu my son, 13, ordered roast beef and cheddar on a pretzel bun. My daughter, 9, picked smoked turkey, cheddar, lettuce and tomato on a pretzel bun. Younger kids might like the offerings from the kids’ menu: a toasted bagel with cream cheese ($2) or PB&J or grilled cheese ($3). I selected the sandwich of the month with chicken, bacon, smoked Gouda, D’anjou pear, and honey mustard on farmhouse bread. My husband chose roast beef with spinach and blue cheese on multigrain. We asked for our sandwiches to be grilled.

Next we visited the sizable salad bar ($8.99/lb). Everything is organic, from the cucumbers to the tempeh. The kids loaded up on blueberries, strawberries and grapes. I crafted a small salad of greens, kale, feta, olives and roasted garlic while my husband filled his salad box. Three types of soup were available at the salad bar, too, including Spiced Mexican Squash Stew. My husband sampled it and found the mixture of squash, corn, tomatoes and spices amazing. We picked drinks—Calder Dairy chocolate milk, bottles of IZZE, and an Honest Tea—and checked out.

Lots of clean eating

“Who got the $9 salad?,” I asked as our dinner was rung up. That’s a pound of salad! My husband looked sheepish. “What did you put in there?,” I asked. “Everything.” We sat at the counter in the dining room to eat. The salad ingredients tasted bright; the fruit fresh. In my Club, I liked the crunchy pear, tart cheese and chewy bacon. My husband called his roast beef and blue cheese “delicious”. My daughter enjoyed her turkey sandwich and impressed me by eating her lettuce and tomato. “It was the same amount of everything so it tasted really good,” she offered. My son wolfed down his roast beef and cheddar but called it dry. “Did you get mustard or mayo on it?” I queried. “No,” he replied. There you go! The kids finished with vanilla pudding ($2.25) and a flourless chocolate torte ($3.99) from the dessert case. Both were delicious and a sweet end to our organic, natural eating experience

“Did you get mustard or mayo on it?” I queried. “No,” he replied. There you go! The kids finished with vanilla pudding ($2.25) and a flourless chocolate torte ($3.99) from the dessert case. Both were delicious and a sweet end to our organic, natural eating experience.

The Short Course

Kid-friendly: Yes.
To avoid wait: Not an issue although sandwiches are made to order so you may wait a bit if busy or you want it grilled.
Noise level: Moderate.
Bathroom amenities: No changing tables in restrooms.
High chairs? Yes.
Got milk? Yes, plus tons of juices, water and tea.
Kids’ menu? Yes.
Anything healthy for kids? Pretty much all!
Food allergy concerns? Gluten-free items are available. Cross-contamination, however, could be a concern for other allergies at the salad bar and sandwich counter.