GLEN ROSE – Sweet Magnolia Market, an eatery and non-profit farmers market, officially opened its doors the first week of April and its owners, Glen Rose High School alumna, Tonya Fonseca and Glen Rose resident, Landra Sheffield, are excited to embark on their newest endeavor. The tandem has completely restored and renewed the house and revitalized the landscape, located at 603 Austin Road, with a fresh new refreshing vibe.
“I am interior designer and I flip homes, so when I purchased this property to flip. I wanted to expose those beautiful oak trees,” Fonseca said. “It was completely grown up, it was an old shack. I wanted to shell out this old house and flip it. In the process of that, I fell in love with it. I started thinking in terms of business and what would be great here. I thought about a farmers market.”
Fonseca and Sheffield were acquaintances and were mutually aware each other’s artwork.
“I already knew Landra,” Fonseca said. “I’m an artist, [and] Landra is an artist, so we would randomly seen each other and each other’s artwork around town and when I thought about opening the business, somehow, I don’t know how, I just knew that she needed to be apart of it. I just thought she would be awesome at it.”
The two became Facebook friends and messaged one another about vintage trailers in the past.
“I called her and asked her to breakfast and she said yes. We started talking and brainstorming and this what we came up with,” Fonseca said. “We never stopped talking and we spend every day together. It’s like we’ve known each other forever.”
Fonseca purchased the property in July 2015 and began renovations in August with no intention of turning the property into a business.
“I remember it was really hot. But no matter how hot it was, when I was out working under those oak trees, there would be shade and a breeze, and that’s where I really fell in love with it,” Fonseca said.
After falling in love with the property, Fonseca dreamt up the idea to open a farmer’s market.
“Then, I thought it would be cool to cook whatever is available and local at the time,” she added. “We really developed the farmer’s market as the primary idea and the eatery is kind of secondary. But, the way it turned out is that we’ve been so busy with the eatery because people want fresh, local food, we haven’t even had time to cultivate the farmer’s market. That’s what we’re working on right now.”
The eatery’s food is either from a 100-mile radius or it is organic. Fonseca and Sheffield focus their food on what is fresh and local.
“We have a quasi set menu,” Fonseca explained. “We’re always trying anything that is fresh and available and what we’ve landed on are some staples, some signature dishes that will stay with the menu. Our soup changes every week. We like offering change to people, and offering things that are cool and different that people want to search out while visiting a town. We want to have things that are different and yummy and fresh. That’s the most important word we use here, fresh.”
On Monday’s, Fonseca said she will make trips to Hamilton to pick up some of the meat used at the eatery for the week.
“All of our pork, chicken and beef have no growth hormones and no antibiotics. Our food costs are higher because of that, but we feel like it’s worth it,” she added. “We only get local fruit and produce. We make all of our dressings homemade and our eggs are from local chicken producers. We go through about eight dozen eggs a day.”
Sheffield said the two prefer to keep a wide variety of different types of food on their menu.
“We’re going begin making chorizo from Hamilton. It’s not greasy and it has no added sugar. It’s the best chorizo I’ve ever had,” Sheffield said. “We’re making a stuffed sweet potato with that chorizo and sauteed onions and bell peppers and some cheese, it’s the best flavor combination I’ve ever had in my life. We’re even going to do a breakfast taco with that chorizo and diced sweet potato with farm fresh egg over it.”
The eatery gets their coffee shipped in from an organic company out of Dallas and their tea from another organic company based in Rockwall. Along with the diverse menu, the eatery offers brunch on Sunday’s where the customer is offered a free mimosa if dining in.
“We’re going to start grilling out and having live acoustic music in the garden on Saturday’s from 6-8 P.M. Just come and hang out and chill in the garden with us” Sheffield said.
The eatery will also begin business lunch deliveries on Friday’s. “If folks call in their order on Thursdays for a certain amount of boxed lunches, we’ll do deliveries on Friday,” Sheffiled said.
The two are in search of farmers who would like to set-up a stall at their non-profit farmers market. If interested, please contact Tonya Fonseca or Landra Sheffield at (254) 897-1220.
Kelsey Poynor, @KPoynor_GRR
(254) 897- 2282