Go: Mendocino Farms
Meet the memorable mascot of Mendocino Farms Sandwich Market: the blue cow. There's something about her I just love, she makes me smile. (I almost wrote he, but then realized this cow statue is clearly female and ready for a milking.)
The first Mendocino Farms opened in Los Angeles in 2005 with a passion to serve delicious, healthy, seasonal, locally-sourced sandwiches and salads. Fittingly, their food partners are displayed with pride and transparency on their website. The business has been such a hit in Southern California that they recently spread their wings north to open the 17th restaurant in Silicon Valley, at The Pruneyard in Campbell. I first spotted the blue cow in December and was immediately intrigued by the symmetrical wall plants, the foosball table, the interior walls covered in faux grass and cow statuettes—the whole vibe drew me in and beckoned, "Come."
Two weekends ago, my family and I finally made it in for dinner and it did not disappoint. Yum and fun! I had a salad: the Save Drake Farm's Salad, with free range chicken breast and goat cheese. My husband had a sandwich: the Real Old-School Pastrami. He got the big size with 10 oz. of meat, it reminded me of Carnegie Deli's legendary pastrami masterpiece. He devoured the whopper with a grin on his face. My children each had a kids meal with grilled cheese; my middle son smiled and said, "This is really good, Mom. Write that in the article."
More details to note:
- They serve Puck's all-natural fountain soda made with cane sugar. It comes in 8 flavors: Cane Cola, Diet Cola, Orange, Lemon Lime, Dark Cherry, Diet Cherry, Cream, and Birch.
- They have craft beer and local wine on tap.
- They have vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free food options as well as a soup of the day and a selection of side salads.
- They cater.
I have a tradition when I go to a new restaurant: I always ask what their most popular dish is. It helps me order well. My only regret about my visit to Mendocino Farms is that I didn't ask this question before ordering. As we dined, General Manager Mike Schuster came over to chat, and I asked my question. He said, without skipping a beat, that there is one best-seller on their menu that far exceeds every other dish in popularity and that is the Avocado & Quinoa Superfood Ensalada. I liked my salad a lot, but I must experience the best-seller; I can't wait to return and give it a taste, or rather, a devouring.
Mike just transitioned over to the Santana Row location, in preparation for its grand opening this Thursday. There are two more Bay Area locations set to open soon: San Mateo and San Francisco. The blue cow has officially moved into the neighborhood, and I sure like having them here. Use the comments below to tell us your favorite things about Mendocino Farms. Bon Appétit!