Two Hopewell neighbors have lived side by side for years. Now they have moved to consolidate their farms as well as their businesses to provide Hopewell Borough with quality farm-to-table foods.
Robin and Jon McConaughy, long-time owners of Double Brook Farm, have partnered with their friends and neighbors, Otto and Maria Zizak, owners of Ottoburger, to manage restaurant operations at Brick Farm Market and Brick Farm Tavern.
The McConaughys opened the doors of Brink Farm Market in the borough in 2013. Since then, they have expanded to include upscale dining with the addition of Brick Farm Tavern. The McConaughys own and operate the adjoining farm, Double Brook, which provides for both the Tavern and the Market.
Otto and Maria Zizak, the owners of Ottoburger located in Hopewell Borough, relocated from New York City four years ago. After operating seven different farm-to-table restaurants in the city, the Zizaks wanted to get back to the land. While they found huge success in the New York restaurant business, sourcing farm-to-table ingredients was not easy in the City. They always dreamed of a return to farming and found it on a five-acre parcel on Route 518 in Hopewell. The couple began growing root vegetables and beets and raising animals for a dairy operation.
The partnership with their neighbors, the McConaughy’s, was the perfect fit. “We share the same set of values about where food should come from,” Otto Zizak said of the partnership in an interview with MercerMe. “And we have been talking about doing this for years,” Zizak stated that he is a partner in the Double Brook Farm operation and now he and his wife will take over restaurant operations at the Tavern and the Market.
“We are part of one big family that all sources from the farm, “ said Zizak. “My wife and I farm vegetables, the proteins come from Double Brook. And now we are moving our burger shop inside Brick Farm Market.”
Zizak stated that local wines are now served at the Tavern and that local coffee is coming next. The group is also exploring using local grains in all the foods including barley, einkorn, and wheatberry.
“We come at all of this from a farm perspective. Now the idea is to double down on the mission,” continued Zizak. “We are trying to truly source all of our protein from the farm or from our local farmers. That is what makes us special. We should stick to what we grow.”
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