The Market at Sawgrass Grove is NOW OPEN! YAY! Are you as excited as I am about this? We have been waiting awhile for the new market to be complete, and I can tell you it was well worth the wait. I was able to stop by on opening day for the soft opening, maybe you caught my video over on the Facebook and/or Instagram page (keep reading for the link to view it).
The atmosphere inside has such a cool vibe and reminds me of a micro version of the North Market back in Columbus, Ohio. And in true Villages fashion, even the construction tunnel is very inviting with signs along the way that read “Have a Zest for Something New? Come this Way!”, “It’s a Little Slice of Paradise!” and “Step Inside & Enjoy!” …make sure you look up when you’re walking in.
I will be back with a more in-depth review of each restaurant soon, but for now I’ll give you a sneak peek at what to expect when you visit The Market at Sawgrass Grove.
The first restaurant I came upon was Frenchy’s Wood-Fired. The smell of the fresh pizzas being made in the wood-fired pizza oven was totally inviting. Free samples were going faster than they were coming. Frenchy’s currently has five different pies: Carne, Italian Sausage, Marghertia, Funghi Bianco, and Roni. They have other stuff too: Garlic Sticks, Beef and ricotta Meatball, Frenchy’s Chopped Salad, Caesar Salad w/Traditional Dressing, and Jumbo Wings. Prices range from $9 to $23.
Willy’s Original Smashburgers is across the way and wasn’t quite up and running when I first got there. However, by time I was leaving they had a line waiting to order up some juicy burgers and such. On their menu are 5 different burgers, 3 sandwiches, 2 salads, 3 options “beyond the bun” (Chicken Bites, Crispy Shoestring Fries, and Crispy Cheese Curds). They haven’t forgotten about the kiddos either with their Little Willy’s items.
I could not wait to get to Darlin’s Sweet Shop! The smell of fresh baked cookies was pulling me to the back of the market and the cheesecakes illuminated the case calling my name. If you know me, you know I’m a sucker for sweets. Let’s just say that the piece of Salted Caramel Cheesecake I had boxed to-go never made it past the doors. OOPS. If you’ve been waiting for a fresh made on-site sweet shop, then wait no more. Darlin’s has cookies, brownies, cakes, cheesecakes and ice cream to go alongside your baked goodies.
Once you get your bakery, stop at Golden Hills Coffee Roasters for a fresh-brewed cup of Joe. While I’m not a coffee drinker, I absolutely love the smell. Golden Hills Coffee has several Espresso Based varieties; Fresh Brewed Drip Coffee, Iced Coffee, French Press, and Pour Over. There are also Special Drinks like Chai Tea Latte (hot or iced), Specialty Teas, Cold Brew Cocktail, Hot Chocolate and Smoothies. The baristas were busy serving up hot cups of coffee for sure.
Not a coffee drinker? Then right in the middle of the Market is the Sawgrass Bar. Pull up a seat at the bar and enjoy the Drink of the Day (on the day I went it was an Orange Grove Margarita). Craft beers are offered in drafts and cans, wine is available and so is seltzer and cider. You can also catch the latest games or news on the overhead TVs. What a great spot to just sit and unwind.
The major tenant is by far The Villages Grown (in my opinion). The new space is triple the size of the store at Brownwood Paddock Square. Looking for local produce and unique staples? This place has it! Everything from vegetables, a variety of lettuces, microgreens, dry goods, frozen and refrigerated doughs and breads, kombucha, pre-made salads and meals, cheeses and so much more. I’m sure you’ve seen their produce in many places throughout The Villages, from grocery stores to restaurants. This new market spot has so much more to offer and items you won’t find anywhere else.
Wait! There’s more coming soon! The teaching kitchen is beautiful and will be host to several guest chef’s demonstrating various techniques and dishes. Next to that will be more from The Villages Grown and the new The Local Butcher & Market and Little Fin Seafood Kitchen. Again, I will be featuring these more in the future once they are open. The open stores have been listed on the Restaurants tab here on Villager Eats, but check back often to find the remaining places once they’re up and running.
Come and take a walk with me and get a quick 5-minute peek from my first visit. The video can be found over on the Facebook page or find the reel on Instagram. This will definitely be a regular spot for me, even though I’m more on the northwest part of The Villages. Stay tuned for more updates and reviews!
The Market at Sawgrass Grove is located at 766 Marilee Place along Meggison Rd next to the Ezell Recreation Center, and across from McGrady’s Pub. The navigation in my car doesn’t have the new southernmost development and streets yet, so I recommend using Google Maps or Waze to find it.