Like many great ideas, the inspiration for Stallard Road Farms came from the founder’s mother.
As a child, owner Katherine Adams suffered from bouts of bronchitis and pneumonia. To help improve her daughter’s health, Adams’ mother used food as medicine. “Before it was even cool, my mom was using vitamins and organic foods to help me,” says Adams.
That experience formulated Stallard Road’s goal, says Adams, of bringing “good, clean, local food alternatives to as many people as possible.”
After Adams and her husband, John, bought the Rixeyville farm in 1999, she began making herbal tea blends and spice mixtures and would gift them to friends and family; by 2007 she put a price tag on them, selling herbal syrups, lip balms, throat sprays and honey (made by her beekeeper husband) online and at The Local Market in Falls Church and Maple Avenue Market in Vienna. (There’s also the Herbal CSA.)
Adams’ favorite is Fire Tonic, which can be downed in a single shot for fans of the horseradish sting. She suggests using the tonic—apple cider vinegar and Stallard Road’s onions, garlic, cayenne and honey—in a marinade or salad dressing that will clear the sinuses and kick-start the immune system.