From Table, to Farm, to Table Again

By Leah Mennies | Boston Magazine | April 2015

1. Raw endive 2. Roasted pistachios 3. Roasted cauliflower florets 4. Medjool dates 5. Feta cheese

1. Raw endive
2. Roasted pistachios
3. Roasted cauliflower florets
4. Medjool dates
5. Feta cheese

When Ben Elliot took over his family’s West Concord property, Saltbox Farm, after nearly two decades working in places like No. 9 Park, he hoped to escape the daily restaurant grind. Over several years, he added chicken coops, beehives, and apple trees, and then began teaching cooking classes at a cottage on the premises. A catering business came next. Now Elliot is ready to give the restaurant world another go—albeit on his terms. “I realized that I can have time for my family, work on the farm, and cook,” he says.

Which is why this spring, he’s opening Saltbox Kitchen, an eatery just 3 miles from the farm and around the corner from the West Concord commuter-rail station. There will be breakfast (sour-cream-biscuit sandwiches), light lunch (buckwheat crêpes with goat cheese), and elegant plates in the early evening (seared scallops with savoy cabbage), with grab-and-go dishes like the cauliflower salad above. Completing the locavore experience this spring? Beers brewed in house by fellow No. 9 Park alum Ralph Fiegel, using hops grown on the farm.