Oren Molovinsky said there is a story behind everything that enters the doors at Farmboy. From the firewood used in the industrial-sized smoker to the apples on display in the front market to the coffee beans used in the espresso machine—Molovinsky knows it all because it is locally sourced, he said.
Molovinsky said all customers need to know about Farmboy is in the Chandler restaurant’s motto: “Shake the hand that feeds you.”
“To me, it’s not about being kitschy and ‘farm-to-table’ and all that,” Molovinsky said. “It’s about having the best ingredients.”
Molovinsky and his family own a farm just a few miles from the restaurant and bring their apples, eggs and peaches to sell in the front of the restaurant, which is set up like a small-scale farmers market. In addition to what his farm produces, they bring in milk, fruits and vegetables from other local Arizona farms, and the meat for sandwiches is locally sourced, too.
“Our mission is really to support local so we can improve access for everybody to have it,” Molovinsky said. “We could have opened a fine dining restaurant, and it wouldn’t have been accessible to as many guests coming in every day [to have] a sandwich.”
Farmboy’s specialty is sandwiches—but the eatery has everything from breakfast tacos to sliders and plenty of items in between. Molovinsky said working with local farmers was key in setting the menu.
“This menu is built around what the farms can provide us,” Molovinsky said. “So what we did was we took a whole side of beef ... a whole side of pork, and ... a whole chicken and we said, ‘How do we develop soups, salads [and] sandwiches and utilize the whole animal?’”
Molovinsky said the real pinnacle of Farmboy is the concept of eating clean and eating local.
“I created this concept as an opportunity to show other restaurateurs and chefs that they can be very influential in how people eat,” he said. “We wanted to show that there is a way to support great local agriculture [and] improve our soil and our environment in our community—which improves so many things economically—but also be able to make great food for a reasonable price.”