After a day wandering among the blossoms at our lovely local Norfolk Botanical Garden, a fresh bite to eat is exactly what I need. Lucky for me (and you, too!) restaurant Marigold and Honey opened up a couple weeks ago by mother/daughter team Monica and Shannon Severy right inside the Garden gates.
I talked to daughter Shannon Severy and she explained, “We try to make our menu as flexible as possible with fresh, seasonal food.”
“Fresh” is the operative word here. The garden pear salad, served with candided walnuts and balsamic vinegarette, just tasted like it was plucked from a summer garden. I’m a big fan of the sweet/savory salad combo, and the candided walnuts offered a nice crunch that complimented softer bites like the lettuce and pear.
That was immediately followed by a seasonal favorite, the turkey avocado BLT. The bread was clearly fresh and the avocado was a nice touch. It was more filling than a salad with the generous serving of bacon and turkey, but definitely not too heavy.
But I have to admit the first thing that plopped down on my table was my favorite: the delectable fresh fruit and yogurt plate, pictured above. The fruit was seasonal and delicious and came with a fresh yogurt, coconut, walnuts, and of course, honey. It was seriously the perfect compliment to the summer’s day.
“Everything contributes to the Garden as a whole. It’s great to contribute to the Garden in this way!” says Shannon Severy. “It’s really great coming in and working with the pros in the Garden.”
This isn’t Shannon’s first experience in a garden. In college she worked on her university’s environmental campus which focused on local farms and fresh food. Allergy awareness is also important to this young restaurateur. She explained to me that she has some allergies and is mindful of that when Marigold and Honey prepares food, so if you’re worried about a food allergy for you or your child, don’t be afraid to ask!
On my “to-try” list is definitely the fresh squeezed lemonade (available in a variety of flavors) the roasted chicken and spinach hot sandwich, and one of their fresh smoothies.
Marigold and Honey is open 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. seven days a week. They also cater, and have a nifty little delivery service within the garden, but I won’t ruin the surprise. Stop by and check them out yourself! They’re inside the gates of Norfolk Botanical Garden, just a short walk from the visitor’s center building.