Nashville Gem: The Farm & Fiddle
Close your eyes. Wait, never mind… you have to read this. Keep your eyes open but use your imagination.
What comes to mind when you read the phrase Country Music? It might be the twang of stringed instruments, lyrics about broken hearts and pickups trucks, or a pastoral scene – life out on the farm.
At least, that’s what came to mind for us. It’s no coincidence that Nashville is the capital of country. It has plenty of all of the above. But we think we’ve found possibly the most country combination: The Farm & Fiddle.
Meet Samantha Lamb.
She and her husband, Daniel, moved to Santa Fe in 2015. Him to play fiddle with Parker Millsap and her to farm. Together, they started the appropriately named Farm & Fiddle. We wanted to learn more about life on the farm, so
Tell me about The Farm and Fiddle?
We’re a 20-acre farm in Santa Fe, just southwest of Nashville. We do specialty vegetables, all organic. We like to concentrate on heirloom varieties and rare vegetables, but we also do cow and sheep’s milk. Produce beef, chicken, duck, pork, and lamb. And sell eggs from ducks, geese, and chicken.
Our focus is quality over quantity, but diversification is also very important to us.
I saw on your website something about CSA? Can you explain that to a layperson?
CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture. People can become a member of the CSA and in return they get a weekly “bounty” or share. We offer different kinds of shares, like vegetarian, CSA share, and a full share.
You pay month-to-month and then pick up a basket of goodies. The vegetarian share is full of seasonal vegetables. The full share includes meat and other specialty items. It’s a great way to supplement your diet. You can base your meals off of it and then go to the grocery store for the small in-between items.
I hear a lot about eating local produce, but why? As a farmer, I imagine you have a pretty good answer?
Local makes sense on every front. Your food is fresher, which means it tastes better and has less of things you don’t want – like preservatives and chemicals. There is no middleman, so it’s better for your pocket. Plus, it stimulates your local economy.
I’m a strong advocate for eating and buying locally because I am local. I survive off of those people, so I want to be one of those people.
What would you say is the hardest part of running your business?
Number one, I’m a farmer, which has to be one of the toughest jobs in the world. I tell people I work 36/7. There is no off time. No vacations. No getting away from my farm… but I love it.
I absolutely love it.
You have to love it to do it. I feel very fortunate to be a farmer. I get to tend to animals every day. Whether it is a good or bad situation, I get to be a steward of the animals and the land.
I get to grow delicious food, which means I personally get to eat fresh every day. And, part of having a diverse farm means that I get to do a bunch of diverse things.
I’m a pastoral person. Getting to live this lifestyle is incredibly rewarding.
What has been the biggest lesson you’ve learned since starting The Farm and Fiddle?
I don’t have to be as scared as I thought. There is a really great foundation already here in Nashville. People are willing to support my farming and my food. Nashvillians have a really great mindset about that.
I’ve learned that you should do what you want to do, and there will always be a customer base.
What is the best financial advice you’ve ever been given?
In general, spend your money wisely.
I grew up with very thoughtful, not always frugal, but thoughtful parents. They were all about teaching us kids about finances, like finding the best deal. Knowing your warranties. Being thoughtful about your purchases and your future.
Another one is to set goals. Goals are huge for us.
What does financial freedom mean to you?
Working as a farmer, with a husband who is a musician, we get worried about the future. We want to expand the farm and start a family, but it’s difficult. Our credit is good, but the stability is more difficult to prove. Financial freedom to me means having a bank that understands us, knows we’re hard workers, and helps us pursue that lifestyle.
What is your favorite thing in Nashville?
It’s a tie between the really fun characters I get to meet and the food. As a farmer, I really appreciate well-cooked, delicious, interesting food, and the culture that comes along with that. Nashville has a great food scene.
Now we have to ask — what are some of your favorite restaurants?
Are you craving the pastoral life? Or, just want to learn more about The Farm and Fiddle? Check out their website.
Have a business you think is a Nashville Gem? Let us know in the comments or by using the hashtags #GetMore #Nashville!