By Tim Collins – Publisher
One of the things I like to do in this magazine is to tell our readers about things they probably don’t know about, but probably would enjoy. Today I visited Smith Farms, a store in Heflin, Alabama that I absolutely loved and had fun tasting my way through.
My son noticed the store last week, when we were on our way back from Cheaha State park near Anniston. (another spot I need to review sometime). What caught our eye first was that we could see the word fudge, as we passed, and we had been looking for a local business that actually made its own fudge (there are none that I know of anywhere on this side of the Atlanta area). So, I looked it up at www.smithfarmsalabama.com, and called to find out more, and then we made the 35 minute drive from Villa Rica to exit 205, eight miles over the border.
This is such a cool store. One thing that I really liked is that there were tons of free samples. You could try all of the fudge which had just been made there in the store, plus sample tons of unique cheeses, pickled Okra, Pickled Asparagus Spears, homemade bacon and much more. It’s a great strategy on the part of Smith Farms, because the things they sell there are really delicious and unique. And, to top it off, on Friday and Saturday they sell ribs and Boston butts. We took home a Boston Butt, which had been smoked for 14 hours and was absolutely delicious. It was only $25 and weighed about 6 pounds (she said these were a little bigger than normal, but even if they were 4 pounds like normal, that’s still a great value)
I think what I liked best about the store is that I found so many things there that I have never tried before. My family had so much fun. Many of the products are local, but they also had a bunch of Amish cheeses and other items. They also have a wine cellar with lots of local wines, including strawberry and watermelon wines. There are many unique jellies. If you were trying to put together a unique gift basket, this would be a good stop, or you can order online. But I would recommend coming – it is an enjoyable experience, and it was relaxing – not crowded.
Here is some of what we left with; six flavors of fudge, a Boston Butt, Bacon strips, Cajun Cheese Curds, Amish area Round butter, Green onion cheese, blueberry cheddar cheese, Hickory smoked baby Swiss cheese, hickory smoked provolone cheese, several brands of gourmet crackers, apple cinnamon barbecue sauce, and horseradish barbecue sauce.
I really wanted to buy a bunch of other things I have never experienced, like Muscadine jelly and some of the pickled items, but I knew I was going to come back, so that will have to wait for my next trip.