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OS Reviews: Way Fruit Farm Downtown Market & Cafe

It’s officially the best season of the year fall, so our staff took that as a sign to head over to Way Fruit Farm and see what the hype is all about.

Way Fruit Farm opened a downtown market and cafe last month at 252 E. Calder Way, and it features a cafe chock-full of sandwiches, salads, apple cider, and baked goods.

The 150-year-old farm has been a Centre County staple for quite some time, so its downtown location is incredibly convenient for fresh produce, specialty dried goods, a ~soda wall,~ and a quick bite to eat.

Check out what our staff thought about the new spot:

Keeley Lamm: Open-Faced Caprese Sammy

Not to be dramatic, but I think Way Fruit Farm is my favorite place on the planet. It’s approximately 860 feet away from my apartment, and I’ve really enjoyed stopping in for fresh veggies or a quick snack since it’s been open. This week was the first time I tried anything on Way Fruit’s lunch menu, and it rocked.

I got the Open-Faced Caprese Sammy, which consisted of a toasted ciabatta roll with fresh mozzarella, tomato, pesto, and arugula topped with balsamic glaze and sea salt. It was so filling and the fresh, orange tomato was especially yummy. There’s no such thing as apple overkill, so I loaded up on a side of applesauce and a cup of cold apple cider, too. The side of applesauce was a perfect size and, along with the cider, I felt so ~autumnal~. Love you, Way Fruit Farm. See you tomorrow, probably.

Mikey DeAngelis: The Donut-wich

The “Donut-wich” definitely exists. You can buy it. On paper, it’s a monstrosity — a sliced cider donut sandwich with bacon, apple slices, cheddar cheese, and apple butter aioli. Of course, I had to try it! I have two takeaways from this. The first is that cheese definitely doesn’t belong on this sandwich. The cheddar was cold and just threw the whole thing off.

Secondly, this sandwich isn’t healthy. I think that’s obvious. My advice? Eat this as a dessert without the cheese. Embrace it as a dessert. I took the cheese off after a bite or two and it was delicious! The bacon is great, the apples are fresh, and the donut is fantastic! Don’t taint the experience with cheese, just enjoy a sweet, fall treat without it.

Grace Cunningham: Zucchini

I recently discovered my love for zucchini. I simply forgot that it was something I could have, but now I’m addicted to it. Way Fruit Farm’s zucchinis are ginormous and 75 cents. Not even Trader Joe’s can beat that. Toss those babies in the oven with some olive oil, salt, pepper, parmesan, and balsamic glaze and your life will be changed forever.

Marie Moyer: Meatloaf Sandwich

I want to start by saying I loved the atmosphere: easy listening hits, friendly staff, quirky sodas, and snacks that remind me of my local farmers market. I loved it. I got the meatloaf sandwich because I was feeling quite ravenous after classes and I was kind of nervous. Just due to the broad tastes of meatloaf recipes, I’m kind of partial to my mom’s meatloaf. I made the right decision, though.

The sandwich had a similar taste to a French dip roast beef sandwich: it was onion-y, garlic-y, and meatloaf-y in all the right places. The meatloaf also had a little kick that I enjoyed, and the meal was quite filling. The pasta salad side I chose was a nice addition and added to the homey farmers market vibe. I also got a whoopie pie, not just because I’m fiscally irresponsible, but to bring me back to my Pennsylvania Dutch roots (rural-ish Delco). My only complaint is that the pasta salad was kind of bland but also I might love red wine vinegar and herbs a little too much. Overall, the meal was pretty good, and I definitely see myself popping in while walking back from class for some baked goods.

Anna Wiggins: Rooster in the Orchard

After making my way over to Way Fruit Farm’s downtown location and trying out some of their apple cider donuts on my own time (spoiler: they were delicious), I was very excited to head back and check out its cafe menu. Ultimately, I went with the Rooster in the Orchard sandwich with a side of macaroni salad. The Rooster in the Orchard is pulled chicken, bacon, cheddar cheese, apple slices, and barbecue sauce on a ciabatta roll served warm. It was mighty delicious.

The barbecue and apple complimented each other in such a warm and cozy way, which is perfect for fall. The bacon and pulled chicken (which is apple cider roasted) also helped bring together a nice smokey flavor. All in all, this sandwich was savory, slightly sweet, and the perfect seasonal sandwich. I was also surprised by the macaroni salad, and not just because I thought I ordered a side of mac and cheese. It was creamy, super flavorful, and reminded me of my family’s very own German potato salad. That’s what I like to call home-away-from-home cooking.

Colleen Nersten: Italian Stacker

I’ve been looking for a go-to lunch option in State College, and I may have finally found it. I got the Italian Stacker — a classic sandwich with ham, salami, pepperoni, provolone cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, and mayo. It was pretty good! I could definitely make the same sandwich at home for like $2, but who has the discipline for that?

This sandwich probably isn’t the most interesting thing on the menu, but it’s ideal for a quick bite and when you don’t want to be super full when you’re finished eating. Way Fruit Farm is great for an in-between class meal, and there’s a lot of seating, which is convenient.

Ryan Parsons: Way Apple Salad

Boy was this fresh! When you’re going to a ~fruit farm~ you have to get fruit, right? Between the fresh apples, apple cider vinaigrette, and local ingredients like feta and bacon, this salad was screaming fresh and delicious fall goodness. I also grabbed an oat pumpkin spice latte from Bees Knees Coffee, which was canned just two days before. Oh, and the bread! My salad came with a choice of bread (I did rye) and the jam was a big highlight. This is such a unique spot, and I’m happy it’s downtown now.

Dana June Nunemacher: Rooster in the Orchard

For my first Way Fruit Farm visit, I tried the “Rooster in the Orchard.” It did not disappoint!!!!! The sandwich featured pulled chicken with barbecue sauce, bacon, and cheddar cheese. It also came with apple slices on the side and on the sandwich itself. I’m not one for fruit on my sandwich but, to keep the sandwich in its truest form, I left them on. I’m very happy I did! The farm-fresh apples gave a nice extra crunch with a pop of sweetness. 12/10 recommend stopping in the store. 

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