Our Mission

Annel & Drew's Kitchen is committed to producing the best quality hand made food using the finest, local, organic ingredients. We strive to support the local economy and build lasting relationships within the community while bringing families together and getting people in touch with their food sources.


Take The Kitchen Tour


What’s Happening

Taste the love! All items on our menu are made from locally grown, organic produce. Our food waste is used as compost to produce soil at the Paul Ecke Central School garden program where the students have a hands on learning experience. Check out their progress here.

Locations

Leucadia Farmer's Market
Paul Ecke Elementary School
185 Union St.
Encinitas, CA 92024
Sundays (10-2)


Not too long ago, we had the pleasure of sitting down and chatting with Lucila de Alejandro who along with her husband, Robin Taylor own one of the largest most, influential Organic Farms here in San Diego called Suzie’s Farm.  You’ve probably seen their diverse selection of incredibly fresh veggies at your local Farmer’s Market with interesting products that you don’t see everywhere like purple cauliflower and watermelon gherkins (little mini tart cucumbers trapped inside a tiny watermelon body)

And for those of you who think that the famous “Suzie” is some head honcho boss lady running the show down at the farm, you are wrong. Suzie’s Farm is named after an abandoned dog that made it’s way onto the property that Robin and Lucila adopted back in the early days before the farm started.

While down on the farm, we sat right smack dab in the the middle of one of the fields that will soon be yeilding loads of vegetables while acting as an interactive learning center where the public can go and take tours and learn about what goes into that carrot that took several months to grow and at the right time was thoughtfully wiggled and tugged from the earth; its roots still holding on for dear life…You get the idea.  There is a lot that goes into our experience with food.

We sat down on some hay bails, lady bugs crawling on Lucila’s straw hat as we talked about her background, inspirations, challenges of owning a farm as well as where she sees organic farming in the future and much more…

Lucila is inspired by the Earth and all the elements that go along with it such as the sky, the sun, the wind and digging our hands in the soil.  All of these things inspire her and are part of our relationship with the Earth.  She describes the Earth as “enlivening and it’s the giver of life”.  She is also inspired by her two daughters, which are why her and Robin started the farm in the first place.

Robin and Lucila, originally took over Sungrown Distributors which was founded by Robin’s Father in 1984.  It was the first company in San Diego to produce microgreens and sprouts for wholesale customers.  Since that specific market can fluctuate and Lucila was interested in getting to know her customers on a more personal level, the farm was eventually born.

With doubts on how they could make a farm work and be able to pay themselves while working full time jobs between Sungrown and Lucila’s job as an Organic Inspector, they began with just one acre of property and one part time staff member at the farm in Imperial Beach.  They soon found out how much work it would be and how farming such a small size of land would never be profitable, so they were able to acquire more land and quickly grew the farm from 1 acre in 2008 to around 70 acres by July of 2009. Now, four years later, with a team of 85 workers, they have recently acquired another 60 acres where they plan to continue having large events and tours so that the public can experience the work, time, thought and love that goes into the food that they eat.

Having the farm tours and letting people come and harvest their own produce is what sets Suzie’s apart from most average farms.  Lucila states that education, community outreach and getting people down to the farm are all part of their mission and that it is reflected in their staff as well. She says, “Pull the carrot from the ground and look at it. Plant the seed yourself. Take a tour and see what it takes. See how that carrot grows and changes over the course of five months.  While you’re busy with your day to day life, that plant keeps growing, you will eat that plant or it will turn to mush in your refrigerator.  Understand the depth of this human experience.” She also adds that if you are looking for something to do for you’re 3 year old and 73 year old, the interactive farm tour is where youmust go as it is great for all ages.

We have so much more to talk about from our time spent with Lucila, so stay tuned for round 2 where we hear more about Suzie’s Farm and where she sees Organic Farming in the future…

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