Business

Keeping the Farmstead Alive

After opening in December, Peerman Farmstead offers an organic farm-to-table menu in downtown Whitefish

By Maggie Dresser
Avacado toast from Peerman Farmstead restaurant and bakery in downtown Whitefish on March 2, 2021. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon

When the Peerman family opened The Farmhouse Inn and Kitchen on Lupfer Avenue in Whitefish in 2019, they didn’t initially plan to open a café with it. But after they started making sandwiches and baked goods in the tiny kitchen, owner Brandi Peerman said the line of customers was down the sidewalk after a week.

To address the high demand, the Peermans switched gears, sold The Farmhouse last September and opened Peerman Farmstead on Central Avenue in Whitefish in December.

“That’s how we got into restaurants,” Peerman said. “We bought that inn as a real estate investment and turned it into a restaurant and we actually really enjoyed it.”

The full restaurant offers an organic menu, much of which comes directly from the Peerman family farm on Farm to Market Road. On their 20-acre property, the Peermans raise heritage livestock, including jersey cows, goats, chickens, sheep and pigs.

Brandi Peerman of Peerman Farmstead restaurant and bakery in downtown Whitefish on March 2, 2021. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon

In addition to baked goods, their sausage breakfast burritos and seasonal winter cranberry chipotle turkey and summer huckleberry sriracha sandwiches are the most popular menu items. Peerman says they try to base their menu on seasonal availability from their farm.

“Our farm is very biodynamic,” Peerman said. “We really try to help make things as natural and holistic as possible.”

In addition to livestock, they are also developing the agriculture side of their farm and plan to have a large orchard, lettuce, edible flowers and more to use at the restaurant. Peerman’s staff also makes bath and body products with lavender, roses, chamomile and more botanicals that they also grow.

“Our restaurant is heavily tied to our farm,” Peerman said. “We were farmers first and the restaurant came later.”

Both Peerman and her husband grew up on small family farms before starting one of their own in California about 15 years ago. They originally started it to educate their kids about growing healthy, homegrown food.
Bringing all the livestock with them, the Peermans moved to Whitefish three years ago and relocated much of the farm from California. Starting with a farmer’s market booth, they eventually purchased The Farmhouse where the restaurant began.

In addition to teaching their four kids about sustainable agriculture, the Peermans also enjoy educating the public about their farm practices, and they donate leftover products to the food bank and individuals in need.

“We just think it’s important to teach our kids and keep (farming) alive and teach the community,” Peerman said. “We have people who come in here all of the time, and we really enjoy educating people about the benefits of natural farming and raising our own food and keeping the tradition alive.”

Goat milk soap on display at the Peerman Farmstead restaurant and bakery in downtown Whitefish on March 2, 2021. Hunter D’Antuono | Flathead Beacon

Peerman also brought her real estate business to Montana, and while she still has a referral program with brokers in California, she is also dabbling in Montana’s market. Meanwhile, her husband runs a construction business.

Between real estate, construction and the restaurant, the Peermans are keeping busy in Montana while the farmstead remains their passion.

“We like being involved in the community,” Peerman said. “We like the people, it’s fun and it’s good for our kids.”

For more information, visit www.peermanfarmstead.com.

maggie@flatheadbeacon.com

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