Expanding horizons: Trexler Farm adds Mill City restaurant

January, 2016 Posted in Other
Hostess Crystal Boland welcomes guests at Trexler Farm in Mill City.

Hostess Crystal Boland welcomes guests at Trexler Farm in Mill City.

By Mary Owen

Long a popular Mehama eatery, Trexler Farm is now open in Mill City.

“I’m now a chain owner!” said Sharlene Trexler of the second location. “We’re so excited to have a real commercial kitchen and a great Highway 22 location.”

Trexler said her customers have asked if her restaurant could be open more than just 15 hours a week.

When approached by the owners of the building in Mill City, she jumped at the opportunity.

“They wanted to find a business that would benefit the community,” she said.

“We were offered the building to use for catering in the spring, since it has a commercial kitchen with a flat top grill and walk-in cooler. We were in need of a larger kitchen since our current kitchen is only 8-by-8 feet, about 65 square feet.”

Trexler opened to the public at her new location on Halloween.

“So every year when we celebrate, we can have a costume party,” she said.

To start, the Mill City Trexler Farm is open to the public on the weekends for breakfast and lunch, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays.

“We are also open any time by appointment or reservation and for catering,” Trexler said. “By spring or summer, we plan to add days that we are open in Mill City.”

Two Trexler Farm locations
20146 Ferry Road, Mehama
815 N. Santiam Highway, Mill City

Plans are also in the works to include outside seating in the summer and to finish the back patio area, Trexler said.

“We will be finishing our visitor information center and hope to be open for travelers by summer,” she added.

The original Mehama Trexler Farm is open for lunch 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday and any time by appointment or reservation.

“So Mill City is just an addition to what we already do,” Trexler said. “We will still host events of all sizes at the Mehama location, which used to be the old Mehama fish hatchery.”

Trexler credits her team for helping to make the Mill City location a reality.

“I have learned that the key to success is the team you build,” she said. “TF is focused on finding team members who want to work together to help each other succeed.

“Mary May has been TF’s catering event coordinator for almost two years, and has been such a blessing,” she added.

“Then, we were lucky to have Norm Williams come aboard as the executive chef in Mill City this year. You may know him from the Maui Grill that used to be in Stayton and Salem a few years ago.

“We also added Shelly Cutlip in June. Her experience in the restaurant industry has been so helpful in helping to put together a successful start in Mill City. Justine Miller came back this year from maternity leave as the Mehama location manager, so our team is really strong.”

Community response to and support for the new location has been “wonderful,” Trexler said.

“People are coming from miles away to help support our team,” she said. “We are all about bringing friends and family together.”

Trexler said without the support of the community, the Mill City expansion would not have been possible.

“When we opened, we went for the Oregon state record for cheapest restaurant ever opened,” she said. “We borrowed some equipment from Jim and Kathy Clough, who purchase the Bird Restaurant in Gates a few years ago. We decorated with garage sale art and coffee bags from Ticos coffee.”

Trexler said both Trexler Farm restaurants feature locally produced products whenever possible.

“Buy local, stay local, shop Santiam!” Trexler said.

Of the new location, she adds, “Come in and try our super, secret pancakes!”

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