Moving from South Florida to Plant City was a bit of an adjustment. We were used to a fast paced life. Driving on I-95 everyday, or riding the tri-rail to avoid I-95 altogether. Aside from our friends and the beach, the one thing I missed the most was Whole Foods Market. Now, I know what you are thinking. How can I miss Whole Foods when I'm at the market everyday with fresh produce? You see, Whole Foods to me was not about their produce, but it was about their salad bar, deli case and prepared meals. To me Whole Foods was a gate to expanding my culinary tastes with new cheeses, olives, and ethnic products I couldn't find at Publix. So about five years ago, I ventured downtown and I found the corner store.
I remember walking in there or should I say "waddling" in there with our youngest daughter in my belly. The corner store became a special treat for me. I would go there once a week for lunch and look through their shelves. Bring some cheese and olives home. I found the best Coconut Milk at the corner store. Needless to say, it wasn't long before Cynthia and I became friends.
This past Thursday night was very special. Two friends came together to showcase their businesses and also our beautiful city, Plant City. A select group of Yelpers, I believe most were from the Tampa area, made the "trek" to Plant City for this special "Berry Good Yelp Event". I would say about 80% of the guests had never been to the corner store or Parkesdale Farm Market. But oh boy, they were in for a treat!
We set up veggie trays with fresh vegetables from the market and our new Smoky Bacon Vidalia Onion dressing for dipping. Our famous Strawberry Salsa and Salsa Grande made an apperance along with our crispy Veggie Chips. We just received a shipment of goodies, so we brought out our new Crushed Olives spread. Be careful, it's got jalapenos in it and it is delicious!
Of course we brought some of our delicious Parkesdale Strawberry Butter, Blue Blazes, Lemon Marmalade and Hoppin' Frog jams.
The evening started with Cynthia's amazingly good butternut squash soup. How she makes it so creamy without it being too heavy is beyond me! Then came the salads, the hummus, the cheese plate, the paninis and the wraps. Yes, it was so much food. And all good food. I know I'm partial, but you can read these reviews from the Yelpers. Fresh fruit provided by Parkesdale was beautifully presented in a skewer by the crew at the corner store.
But it wouldn't be a Parkesdale event without our Famous Strawberry Cookies or our Strawberry Milkshakes! Yes, our amazing employees in the shortcake area figured out how to transport our milkshakes for this event. I'm so thankful for our team! Not only were the guest served our Strawberry Milkshake, but they also got to try our new Pumpkin Pie Milkshake! I think these Yelpers were in shock. I don't think they've ever had so much good food made with fresh, local ingredients and a lot of heart. If you are ever near Plant City, may I suggest you stop at the corner store for lunch, then come down and see us for dessert. You will not be dissapointed!
Did you know we were making Pumpkin Milkshakes?
Do you ever visit Plant City's Downtown area?
Have you ever tried Cynthia's great food at the corner store?
P.s. I was too busy having fun and did not take any of these pictures. Some were taken from Meals and Miles' blog. The rest were taken from the corner store's Facebook page.