Wednesday, March 30, 2011

REVIVAL MARKET HOUSTON HEIGHTS TEXAS

2nd Man and I were fortunate enough to spend an hour last Saturday roaming around at the newest retailer to come to the Houston Heights....Revival Market.

Revival Market is the brainchild of Morgan Weber, of Revival Meats (check out his website here) and business partner chef Ryan Pera, formerly of The Grove restaurant.  Morgan has been selling meat from his farm at local venues such as Houston Dairymaids (review of them coming soon) and the Houston Farmer's Market, as well as supplying many area restaurants.  Morgan's philosophy is to keep it local, sustainable and most importantly, humanely raised.  His farm is known for its Mangalitsa pigs as well as the fact that it does not use growth hormones, GM grain, or antibiotics in any way.  He features beef, pork and veal.

Ryan's involvement and background is to bring his culinary expertise and putting that into curing meats, a process called Charcuterie.  As in bacon, ham and sausage (among other things).  In fact, Revival Market has Houston's first and so far, only, dry curing room in a retail shop.  Some amazing stuff is coming from Ryan and the use of that room. 

The two together have created a really nice, and much needed, alternative to the Whole Foods and Central Market's of the city.  One important thing they have done is partner with all sorts of local food producers/providers.  Including, but not limited to, cheese from Houston Dairymaids, bread from Slow Dough Bread Company, and to die for desserts from Fluff Bake Bar (chef Rebecca Masson).  Also represented are several other smaller providers of local products.  They even have locally roasted coffee beans in their in-house coffee bar.

Our purchases for the day included farm fresh eggs from Burr Farms in Wharton, TX (yes, I know, we'll soon have our own supply of farm fresh eggs but when you have the opportunity to buy them IN Houston, don't pass it up).  We also bought some low pasteurized milk and cream from Way Back When Dairy (love that name) in Jacksonville, TX, a loaf of french bread, and some of their house made strawberry jam.  It was wonderful spread across the still warm baguette.  Oh, we also got a slice of cake to have later with a glass of the freshest milk we've ever had.

We wanted the bacon in the worst way, which I've heard amazing things about.  So we stood in line to get some, but unfortunately, they sold out, just one person prior to our turn.  We'll have to get there early next time.  Their steaks and meats (including chickens) were beautiful.  The beef was a deep, rich, red color, the kind you don't see at regular grocery stores.  They also have sausage and cured meats and the like.  The store was packed the day we were there and I hope this is a good sign for them.  Despite the crowd, we were able to check out quickly when ready. 

That's one of the great things about this place is just ALL the local stuff.  We've never had anything like this, short of going to a weekend farmer's market, all in one grocery store.  When we pulled into the parking lot, a gentleman was bringing in a huge basket of fresh vegetables, he was one of the suppliers, and later those veggies would be for sale in their produce department.  From harvest to grocery store shelf.  The only way you could get something fresher would be to pull it out of the ground yourself and eat it.  A nice feature is that most everything they sell, puts the name of where it's from on the nameplate underneath it.  You can SEE that what you are buying is about as local as you can get.  They even have local honey, Texas grown and made olive oil, fresh herbs and veggies, and their own house made pickles, jams, and butters.  Rumor has it they are going to expand into prepared meals as well.



So please, if you are in Houston and especially inside the loop, it's worth checking out.  See what "eating local" is all about.  This is exactly the philosophy we want to adapt to by having our own farm.  Now it will be great having a source for similar things in the shadow of downtown Houston!

They are located at 550 Heights Blvd (just North of I-10).

They are open Mon-Fri 6:30am to 7:00pm, Saturday 8:00am to 7:00pm, and Sunday 10am - 5pm.

Morgan, Ryan, and all the other fine folks at Revival Market, WELCOME TO THE HEIGHTS!

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