Be careful what you wish for, it just might come true.
When Fresh Thymes, the mother and daughter-run corner sandwich shop focusing on local, seasonal ingredients took over the spot vacated by Wild Chives and Rosemary (too many herbs on this corner; it confuses me), the drab white walls I wished had color got a new coat of vibrant orange, purple, and green.
The lamented, hung-too-high pictures were replaced with walls filled high and low and every which where with local paintings (not bad), John Denver albums, random framed inspirational sayings, and various tchotchkes (all bad).
I forgot to wish for a professional designer, and instead got crazy-fun, old-lady design. Oh, well. It's still better.I probably should have wished for an upgrade from the sandwiches and salads of the previous tenant, but Fresh Thymes is keeping the corner neighborhood joint in the same vein.
What is different is Fresh Thymes' gluten-free awareness with menu accommodations and baked goods from Kennett Square's gluten-free bakery, Sweet Christine's. The soup special of the day, a golden gazpacho studded with tomatoes, purple bell peppers, peaches and cilantro, was light and refreshing. The chunks of sweet peaches went surprisingly well with the tomato broth.
Another special of the day, a grilled sandwich featuring Mozzarella, pesto and peaches, suffered from too much grease — from the pesto slathered on the inside of the bread, and the butter for grilling on the outside of the bread. Here, peaches did not go so well. While interesting, I don't think a grilled cheese sandwich with peaches and pesto needs to be explored again.Menu items come with cute names like Meredith's Power House Sandwich, Theresa's Veggie Burger (sadly, not housemade), and Sunny's Sunflower Salad. When we ordered the Janeydilla, a sandwich described as Lancaster Cheddar, onion, bell pepper, tomato, olives, and fresh herbs melted in a wrap, we assumed the "dilla" part of the name was dill, not quesadilla, so were a little surprised when a veggie filled quesadilla arrived instead of a wrap.
Sandwiches come with either a side of chips or tabbouleh. Besides being a bland, disappointing, three-forkful portion, the tabbouleh salad is a misnomer. Instead of bulgur wheat, Fresh Thymes uses quinoa to make the traditional Middle Eastern salad gluten-free. There is also very little parsley, the key ingredient in tabbouleh. That's very thoughtful of Fresh Thymes to make a salad that's gluten-free, but they should just rename it quinoa salad, so as not to mislead customers. Also, up the seasoning and portion size.
Open at 8am Tuesday-Saturday, Fresh Thymes also serves breakfast staples like granola and yogurt, breakfast burritos, French toast, eggs, and bagels, but also sneaks in a trendy and healthy newcomer to the breakfast scene, millet and quinoa porridge.
Fresh Thymes is only open for breakfast and lunch, but if you watch their Facebook Events page you can be the first to know about their occasional RSVP dinners, and, of course, make a reservation for nighttime eats.
Fresh Thymes is a quirky, friendly neighborhood shop dishing up smiles and simple breakfast and lunch-time fare you could easily whip up in your own kitchen, but sometimes it's just nice to get out of the house and see your neighbors.
1836 N. Lovering Ave., Wilmington, DE 19806