Sugartown Strawberries, Malvern

sugartown-strawberries

I’ll never forget the best strawberries I’ve ever eaten. It was 1997; I was in Munich, Germany, strolling on the outskirts of the Viktualienmarkt (a farm market in the center of the old town), when I walked past a vendor selling strawberries that smelled so intoxicating that I couldn’t do anything else but stop. The berries lived up to their fragrant aroma; they were perfectly sweet and juicy, with just a hint of tang. What was so amazing about these strawberries was how they absolutely melted in my mouth. Typically, with supermarket strawberries, firmness indicates ripeness; a strawberry that falls apart while eating is too far on the wrong side of rotten.

Which brings me to Sugartown Strawberries, a small farm that’s about a mile south of Paoli Pike, on Sugartown road in Malvern. Perhaps best known as a purveyor of pick your own (PYO) strawberries (which was unavailable last year and isn’t available yet this year), SS offers fresh produce at a small farm stand Spring through Fall, including strawberries, of course, as well as asparagus, squash, eggplant, peppers, sweet corn and tomatoes.

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BuenaVista Mexican, Malvern (Frazer)

buenavista-mexican

It’s on the main drag (Rt. 30), but not all that easy to notice. Located in the spot that most recently housed the Great Valley Deli (Collegeville Deli II), BuenaVista Mexican is a small, nondescript restaurant in a small, nondescript strip mall (that also houses Strawberry Bakery) along a nondescript area of Frazer. It is, however, worth finding this place, for hearty, homemade Mexican fare that stands above the more common fast-casual Mexican chains of the area.

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Martini’s Italian Market, Paoli

martinis-italian-market-paoli-ricotta

When news broke that Martini’s Italian Market was coming to the Paoli Village Shoppes, I’ll admit the name had me expecting a Carlino’s-style market that focused on prepared food and Italian products. In reality, however, Martini’s — which is run by relatives of the Martini’s who ran the eponymous restaurant in Devon for many years — is firstly a sandwich shop and cafe, with a wide variety of creative and interesting hoagies and sandwiches and a surprisingly ample seating area. There is also a small selection of prepared foods and dinners available to go, along with a small, interesting (if a bit haphazard) selection of pastas and other Italian goodies.

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Ashys Burger & Fries, Paoli

ashys burger paoli

Ashys Burgers & Fries is a little storefront operation in the Paoli Shopping Center serving up excellent hand-crafted, fresh (never frozen) burgers, lots of fries, as well as some Mediterranean specialties like hummus, falafel and stuffed grape leaves.

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