Saturday, June 11, 2022

New Restaurant Concept Unveiled in Morgan Hill

Farm-fresh option to be featured at new Sunsweet development.

Whether you’re capping a family hike or a long bike ride – or fueling up beforehand – MOHI Farm will give you a healthy, appetizing option you can eat in or take out.”
— Frank Leal, Founder of MOHI Farm

MORGAN HILL, CA, UNITED STATES, June 9, 2022 / -- As if the buzzing restaurant scene in Morgan Hill wasn’t exciting enough, a new entry is about to make its mark with a brand-new concept in fresh, healthy eating.

Developer and restaurateur Frank Léal, the

creative force behind the popular MOHI Social and Champagne Room at the revived Granada Theater, will unveil his latest offering, MOHI Farm, at a sneak preview event on June 9th.

Located within the Sunsweet mixed use development on E. Third Street right next to the Farmers’ Market, MOHI Farm will offer a healthy, family-friendly dining experience. The key word is FRESH: the menu will feature a flavorful array of options, all showcasing the freshest ingredients sourced from local farms, including Léal’s own four-acre plot just outside of town. (A few ingredients will be even closer at hand – mint and other herbs for a few signature dishes and drinks are already growing in decorative planters waiting to surround the dining area once construction is complete.) Customers will delight in everything from mouth-watering flatbreads and dosas to delectable agua frescas and cocktails, all served in a bright, fast-casual atmosphere. Counter service means you can eat in or order to go. The restaurant will also offer a limited retail section for fresh, in-season produce.

Proximity to the Farmers’ Market is no coincidence. Honoring a commitment to sustainability, MOHI Farm plans to make good use of its bounty, turning quality unsold produce from the market into delicious menu items.

All this is the brainchild of Léal, who envisions Morgan Hill as a destination that delights locals and draws visitors. “We have employees who live here, who are raising kids here,” he explains. “We want to create a sense of place for them.” Léal himself has been a Morgan Hill mainstay since buying his first house in the area at 23 with money earned building fences while he was still in high school. Since then, he has gone on to launch a number of enterprises anchored in the town, including Willow Heights mansion, MOHI Social, and MOHI Wine. A hands-on boss, he might be found on any given day in his signature overalls tinkering with a patio heater, trying out new ideas in the kitchen, or back at the farm working the garden.

With his latest venture, MOHI Farm, the focus is on creating great food for the active lifestyle that makes Morgan Hill so attractive. “Whether you’re capping a family hike or a long bike ride – or fueling up beforehand – MOHI Farm will give you a healthy, appetizing option you can eat in or take out,” says Léal. Flavor is key: Léal is already working to engage award-winning chefs who will bring an added dimension to this new twist on the farm-to-table concept.

While the new restaurant will appeal to many, the true beneficiaries will be residents of the new luxury Sunsweet apartment community. Located in the retail base of the complex, MOHI Farm will offer an exclusive delivery and catering service to tenants.

Republic Urban Properties developed the Sunsweet project in partnership with Morgan Hill’s Glenrock Builders, Inc. “It is always rewarding to see an ambitious project like this come to life – especially one that combines form and function so perfectly,” says Republic CEO Michael Van Every. Glenda Garcia, Vice President of Glenrock, agrees, “We truly believe Sunsweet is the very best asset for Downtown. And to have someone like Frank, who loves this community so much, open a restaurant here is a dream come true. What a great benefit for our tenants!”

“The City’s vision for Downtown is a gathering place, a connecting force, the social and activity heart of Morgan Hill,” observes Edith Ramirez, Morgan Hill’s Assistant City Manager. “A farm-to-table restaurant will bring perfect synergy to the Farmers Market, the Railroad Playground and OneYoga—bringing to life the Downtown Specific Plan’s vision for 3rd Street.”

Fellow restaurateur Dan McCranie, owner of the venerable favorite Ladera Grill, believes the new restaurant will have other benefits. "Downtown Morgan Hill is a great dining destination. New quality restaurants coming to our community will only enhance the downtown dining experience for everyone, by adding new choices, new vivacity–and new customers.”

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