WANDA-- Each town has its own jewel that adds to its overall value, and for the town of Wanda, that gem is "The Farmhouse."

Owners Michael and Louise Beranek opened their restaurant in March 2018.

Michael has a background in the culinary arts, working for years as a chef in St. Cloud, and perfecting his craft along the way.

The couple moved back to Wanda in the last few years to assist Michael's dad with farming, putting his passion on pause. 

"I still had a love for the kitchen, so I always found myself in the kitchen every year when we weren't in the field," said Michael.

"The last three years or so I decided to myself, after being in so many different kitchens, that the only way I was getting back into one was if it was my own."
 
The restaurant is about an hour and a half from Mankato, and an hour from New Ulm. Manager Beth Irlbeck said however long the drive, people still make that journey for a worthwhile experience. 
 
"We've had a lot of people from New Ulm and Marshall that come down and are regulars, so you know that is really nice to keep seeing regular faces," said Irlbeck. 

The Farmhouse is definitely putting the small town on the map, and as it is approaches its anniversary, the owners reflect on an eventful first year.

"It's been a crazy year, it's been a great year,we have grown so much," said Louise. "Coming on the one year anniversary, we're just super excited to what the future holds for us and where we can go from here." 

Walking into the building you see a luminous bar, spacious and comforting dining room, and a decorated party room.

There is also a friendly staff, including Skylar Boldt, a skilled dessert maker, who is also studying to be a dentist. 
 
"There's kind of a contradiction there, you know going to dental school, you know they try to keep you away you know from the sweets and the sugar,"laughed Boldt. "I myself have a sweet tooth, it's tough going between the two but you make it work."
 
The restaurant has many attributes that add to its success, but the food is what really puts the icing on the cake.

The Farmhouse changes their menu every four months, keeping that element of surprise. The week of January 14, they are serving the Australian Barramundi over Jasmine Rice with lobster cream sauce, topped with red and green onions, but there is more. 

" The Vegas Steak, it's done Sous Vide and finished in sauté with a Lobster Béarnaise Sauce," said Michael.

" For an appetizer we have our Bang Bang Shrimp, that is a beer-battered shrimp, tossed in a Bang Bang Sauce, and then it goes over the top of the fresh spring mix, with shaved Parmesan cheese." 

For those looking for a not so fancy meal, they have the "Farm Philly," on four cheese bread with shaved, grilled ribeye. The sandwich is topped with peppers, onions and mushrooms, with a House Four-Pepper Smoked Gouda Cheese Sauce and fries.

There are very few restaurants like this, with owners so fond of their town, they were willing to create a source of hospitality and quality food. If you have the time, head over to Wanda, and see for yourself why this place is one in a million.

-- KEYC News 12