Four Flocks and Larder
Kristi Maier | @triadfoodies
Oh the wonder and excitement of the opening of a much anticipated restaurant. There’s nothing quite like it for us foodies. Imagine what it’s like for the owner of the new restaurant, whether it’s their first or second or third! Imagine that it’s not only restaurant but a full-fledged compound. That was the set-up for Morehead Foundry, home of Four Flocks & Larder.
When Four Flocks opened in December, the buzz in the air was palpable. Heck, you could see it with your own two eyes. After an incredible VIP Grand Opening, which acted as a preview of sorts, Morehead Foundry opened its complex two days later. Four Flocks & Larder, Revolution Burger, The Baker & the Bean (a coffee shop and bakery), Hush (a speakeasy), The Public (an event venue) and Carolina Event Rentals. On opening day and the days to come, people lined up, especially at Four Flocks & Larder— to take a look at the awesome space and beautiful mezzanine, see how the enormous shared kitchen is, well, shared, and sink their teeth into some very delicious food, hopefully worthy of all the fresh. local. good. hype.
Then reality set in. Folks converged in mass. People had to (gasp) wait for a table. And then they had to wait an extra-long time on food (double gasp). If you go out to eat a lot, then this ain’t your first rodeo. You know that for any restaurant, even if it’s an owner’s second or 20th, it takes a while to shake off the jitters and work out those pesky kinks. So we heard the reviews. And they weren’t always nice. And so we waited….
Fast forward to not quite two weeks ago and Mr. foodie and I decided we were long overdue for a date night alone and I just knew my dear readers might be anxious to hear our two cents about Four Flocks.
Well, aren’t you?
I’m just glad my husband doesn’t mind a date night to also be research.
First of all, the design and vibe of Four Flocks are on point. It’s a vast and open space, but doesn’t seem overwhelming. It’s actually pretty cozy with cushioned chairs and an ambiance that invites one to linger. There are lots of juleps on the cocktail menu. We ordered drinks straight off. I can’t even remember what we got. I enjoyed my cocktail and how the ice was so very crushed that it made it almost slushy-like. The drink could’ve been a touch stronger for me. My husband felt his drink and the strength of it was just right.
The Southern menu offers a selection of appetizers that all sounded very appealing. We opted simply for an order of this beautiful bread that kind of looks like milk bread, but was a bit denser and slightly sweeter. Served in two cute individual portions. You can enjoy sandwiches if you prefer. As for entrees, we were quite intrigued by the Meat And Three option in which you order a protein and choose from a number of sides like grits, white bread stuffing, seasonal veggies or mashed potatoes. This is a great plan for some folks because Four Flocks doesn’t allow substitutions with its actual entrees. As we tell the kids, “you get what you get and you don’t fuss a bit.”
I had a very difficult time deciding because the quail looked amazing as did the duck entree that comes with sautéed brussels, local grits with a cherry reduction (you can also order duck with three sides). But there was something about the seared NY Strip Steak with Duck Fat Fries and Marrow Toast that called me. It was really the marrow toast that called me…and maybe also the duck fat fries. But ordered it, I did. Mr. Foodie ordered the Duck Entree.
We had a brief opportunity while waiting on our entrees to meet with Executive Chef Daryl Schembeck and he was so nice to bring us a small sample of the feature for the evening. It was a seared ahi tuna with grilled veggies and seared citrus topped with sliced almonds. Anyone who ordered that dish that evening would’ve been thrilled. It was the most perfectly cooked tuna I’ve ever had at a restaurant. And the seared citrus was such a lovely counterpoint to the fish. Very light, completely flavorful and I’ll be looking for something like that next time I visit.
My NY Strip was a perfect medium-rare with an excellent crusty rub. The duck fat fries were amazing and that marrow toast…I love the marrow from bones when I cook from them. This marrow toast had just a small schmear on a crispy piece of bread with micro greens and herbs. It was superb. Can we just add that as an appetizer please? My husband’s duck was wonderful as well, cooked the perfect rosé, as promised by the manager. My husband told me, “Mine was excellent, but yours wins the table because it’s most satisfying.” And he’s right, there’s just something about meat and potatoes. Especially when the potatoes are fries cooked in duck fat.
Chef Schembeck comes to North Carolina from New York, where he was most recently chef for the United Nations. He told us he was happy to be here down south with us and was ready for the change. “I’ve cooked for every head of state in the world, pretty much. The Pope. Dictators, tyrants, presidents, President Bush and President Obama.”
Chef told us that early on, Four Flocks was very busy and chaotic and there were many people who didn’t appreciate the wait on food, but he says he thinks the restaurant is now hitting its stride. “We hope people who were here before come back and give us another shot. I think the kitchen has a great flow now. We’ve got a new menu. It’s worth another look.”
We must agree.
I love little markets so we stopped for a spell and looked around in the larder. Some of the items are kind of expensive but there are plenty of fun, uncommon provisions that would be good for entertaining or as gifts. Definitely worth checking out.
This is our hope for you in regards to Four Flocks and Larder. If you have visited there once or even twice, and walked away less than impressed, you owe it to yourself and to this locally-owned business to give it another go. It’s no small feat or investment to open up a restaurant and we know owner Lee Comer has put some bank and heart into Morehead Foundry.
Eating out shouldn’t be just eating out. It’s an experience. Go for that. Make a night of it. Enjoy a meal, followed by dessert at B & B, take in the views of the Downtown Greenway, then hit Hush for jazz and cocktails and experience this multiplex for how it was intended. It’s also cozy enough to take a load off while you wait on a meal via their popular “to go” service. You might also dig their nightly Blue Plate Specials that highlight items like Meatloaf and Chicken and Dumplings.
Wanna go? Four Flocks and Larder is located at Morehead Foundry, 433 Spring Garden Street, Greensboro. Open for lunch and dinner and Sunday brunch. Visit freshlocalfoodgroup.com for more.
Note: In last week’s Craft Beer issue featuring “Triad Beer and Eats”, we labeled Red Oak Hummin’Bird as an IPA, when in fact it is a Hummin’ Bird Helles Golden Munich Lager. Red Oak specializes in Bavarian Style lagers. We apologize for any confusion. Cheers!