Arlington can be a difficult place to dine for a foodie, what with all of the chain restaurants serving junk by the pound and all. Nine times out of ten I just decide to eat at home where I can get a more wholesome and healthy meal. Plus, I’m super
cheap frugal careful with my money.
However, I kept hearing buzz from many of my friends about a restaurant in downtown Arlington that prepares food with all organic and locally grown ingredients, and here’s the kicker – you pay what you want to pay for the food. It all sounded too good to be true to me, and I honestly didn’t see how their business model was going to be successful.
I was too skeptical to go in and check them out for myself because it didn’t make sense to me, and I was worried it would be a waste of time and money. Plus, every time I passed by they looked closed (their parking is around the side and back of the building).
Well, O-M-G, I’m SOOO glad that I finally went after my bestie invited me to go a few dozen times. The Potager Cafe surprised my culinary socks off!
The building is an old sandwich shop, but when you go in you feel like you’re in a tiny coffee shop in France. The decor is rustic and cozy, and you’re greeted upon entry by the very friendly chef or the always cheerful owner from behind the counter.
There is a chalkboard next to the counter that you order at, which lists all of the menu items of the day. You choose what you want, and the chef plates it all up for you right there. He’ll ask you how much you want of each item so as not to waste food; you can always go back for seconds or thirds. Then you get your drink from another counter and seat yourself.
When you’re finished eating, someone will bus your table. Then you look at the suggested pricing menu on the wall and pay. You can pay cash in an envelope provided and drop it into a tin watering can. Or you can pay by credit card (minimum $10) by using the credit card machine with the provided instructions on the back wall. Genius. I love it.
The amazing chef and owner buy all of the ingredients every morning, and they prepare the menu based on what was at the market. They keep the list small (in comparison to a “normal” restaurant) so as not to waste food. Brilliant! And the food they prepare is amazing! It’s delicious, wholesome, healthy, and fancy but not snooty. They post their menu to their Facebook page daily, so check it out!
So I know what you’re thinking: Is it kid-friendly? The answer is absolutely. It is very fast and so healthy! You get your food right away, so there’s no waiting around for table service. Plus, you can order a small plate for them with little waste, and you know the food they’re eating isn’t a processed mess. I probably wouldn’t have a playdate there, as too many kids might overwhelm the place, but I’d definitely take a couple of kids with no worries.
Definitely check them out. You won’t regret it. Plus, you’ll be supporting a local business, local farmers and ranchers, and feeling like a part of the community. Two thumbs up from this Arlington Mama!
Here are the details from the Potager Cafe website:
Open for Lunch Tuesday to Friday from 11 to 3
Open for Brunch on Saturday from 11 to 3
Open for Dinner Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 5:30 to 9
And, sure, you can BYOB!
We are located at 315 S. Mesquite Street in Arlington. That is just north of Border (aka UTA Blvd.), one block from the Levitt Pavillion, the First Baptist Church and UTA, and just a few blocks from the Central Library, City Hall, Theater Arlington, Johnny Highs and the Downtown Arlington Farmers Market!
Phone: (817) 861-2292