The new Bethesda Central Farm Market (Thursdays, 3-7 p.m.) is just steps from the kitchens of Bethesda Row's participating restos. Local farm-fresh produce hitting the tables includes meats, cheeses, seafood, veggies and more.
At Redwood (7121 Bethesda Lane), for instance, Executive Chef Blake Schumpert prepares a three-course tasting menu (exclusively on Thursday evenings) incorporating what he purchased that afternoon.
Pricing for the three-course menu range from $39 to $45, but you can also still opt for the a la carte menu.
Appetizers from the new market menu include chilled corn soup with smoked trout and tomato salad; heirloom tomatoes and watermelon salad with Stonyfield Farm goat cheese, fresh herbs; pole bean and zucchini salad with Virginia Fromage Blanc and green gazpacho dressing, as well as wood-oven pizza served with Pipe Dream Farms pork belly, arugula and locally sourced cheeses.
Schumpert cited entrée highlights as wood-grilled bison steak from Towson, Md., served with market succotash, potato puree and natural jus; market fish selection served with a Chesapeake Bay corn chowder sauce; rotisserie Amish hen served with a tomato and olive bread Panzanella salad, and Silver Spring pasta served with a selection of market vegetables au pistou.
For a sweet ending, Schumpert serves a dessert of fresh corn gelato (from neighbor La Dolcezza) with marinated market berries. Fruit soup with "Sweet Virginia" crème fraiche or a sheep’s milk crostini with drizzled with honey from the Bethesda Central Farm Market are also found on the special Thursday menu.
Go green and go local -- through Nov. 1. Then the meaning of "seasonal" starts to seem a whole lot less exciting.