After reading a fascinating profile of Chef Matt Jennings at the Leather District Gourmet and then tasting some of the Prince of Porc's porcine offerings at Cochon 555, I was very intrigued and desirous of visiting Cheff Jennings' restaurant and cheese shop in Providence, Rhode Island.
Matt and Kate, his wife, own the Farmstead, an artisan cheese shop; La Laiterie Bistro, a restaurant; and Farmstead Lunch, a small sandwich shop that also sells meats, cheeses and gourmet foods. Though I have future plans to visit the Farmstead and La Laiterie, I recently had the opportunity to stop for lunch at Farmstead Lunch on my recent trip to Long Island. On route to New London, Connecticut, as it was lunch time, we decided to stop in Providence for a quick bite.
It is a small shop and it even lacks seats, though there is a small elevated table where a few people can stand and eat. The large glass case above contains numerous hams, sausages and other cured meats while there is plenty of cheese atop the case. There are other shelves with gourmet foods, including duck bacon! If I had a cooler with me, I would have bought some of that bacon. But it will have to wait for another time.
The sandwiches, $6-$12 each, are written on a chalkboard, enabling them to easily be revised if needed. Plus, for $2, you can add bacon to any sandwich you want. What sandwich is not made better with bacon? Plenty of the sandwiches appealed to me but we selected two to split: the Cheesemonger's Choice (with bacon) and Jambon Beurre.
The Cheesemonger's Choice ($7) contains plenty of cheeses on country bread and is cooked in a panini press. It was quite tasty, with plenty of gooey cheese and nice fresh bread. The bacon of course added to the pleasure of the sandwich. I am not sure of the exact cheeses used but there were at least two, and possibly three different kinds. One might have been a goat cheese. The exact types are somewhat irrelevant, as I thoroughly enoyed it.
The Jambon Beurre ($8) contains ham, cornichons, sweet cream butter and Dijon (which I got on the side) on Pan Francese. Again, another excellent sandwich with plenty of fillings, good fresh bread and a nice taste. The bread had also been grilled, adding to the enjoyment of the sandwich.
I was very pleased with this little sandwich shop and it gets my recommendation. It made me even more excited to check out the Farmstead and La Laiterie in the near future. Plus I have to return for some of that duck bacon.