There’s only one Farmtruck Pizza & Greens. But to look at the sleek counter-service spot, you wouldn’t know it. And it turns out, the Chantilly restaurant once was part of a chain, Gusto Farm to Street.
According to NoVA-based CEO Meg Schiffman, five of the previous seven Gustos closed during the pandemic. In January, the Chantilly Gusto became Farmtruck because, as Schiffman puts it, the old name “just didn’t clarify what the concept was.” The other remaining Gusto, in Durham, NC, is now Farmside Kitchen. And she’s right; both indeed tell you what to expect.
And the best way to enjoy the locavore eats, in my estimation, is to sample both the pizza and greens. That’s why I’m a newly minted devotee of the Half n’ Half. At Farmtruck, $12.45 buys you a petite, made-to-order pizza, a salad, and a drink. The oblong pizzas, flash-baked on a conveyor belt, are stretched to order and remind me a bit of a wheat-flour version of a Mexican huarache. But this is Meatless Monday–I’m here to tell you about eating without harming animals, and, while Farmtruck isn’t exclusively vegetarian, it is locally focused and uses regional farms for many of its ingredients.
To take optimal advantage based on the farm partners listed on the restaurant’s walls, I ordered the Wild Shroom pizza, which is covered in mushrooms from Cardile Mushrooms from Avondale, Pa., as well as arugula from Bright Farms in Culpeper, among other local-ish suppliers. With a base of balsamic mushroom truffle sauce, the oval of dough is topped with cremini mushrooms, smoked Gouda, and mozzarella, and finished after baking with arugula, goat cheese crumbles, and a bit more balsamic. It’s a tangy, creamy delight.
I paired it with the Thai Crunch salad, which I admit that I chose for its inclusion of fresh mint. The cilantro-lime dressing and squirt of peanut sauce over a collection of vegetables like cucumbers, radishes, and edamame made it a luminous foil to the pizza.
Yes, it may operate in the mold of a chain (you can even have your salad or pizza made to your specifications), but this one-of-a-kind business is a pleasant surprise when skipping meat, or just focusing on healthy, local fare.
14385 Newbrook Dr., Ste. 500, Chantilly
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