AT A GLANCE
• PLACE: Fisher Farm
• LOCATION: 17747 E. Highway 120, Ripon
• HOURS OF OPERATION: May through October, Monday through Thursday and Saturday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.; Friday and Sunday, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
• HOW TO GET THERE: Take Highway 120 east towards Escalon; look for the large sign next to junction of French Camp Road and Highway 120.
• INFORMATION: Call (209) 982-4184 or log on to www.fisherfarm.farmvisit.com.
RIPON – Daniella Arteaga describes the taste of a fingerling potato as “buttery.”
The Escalon teen not only enjoys having this small, stubby, finger-shaped type of potato mixed in with her favorite dish, but, as a summer job, she also sells the yellow-skinned variety at Fisher Farm along Highway 120.
“My mom will cook it up and put it in a burrito,” she said on Monday.
For the past eight years, Cara Fisher has handled the operation of this family-owned produce stand.
“I grew up here,” she said. “I came back to help my dad out on the ranch.”
Opened from May to late October – usually Halloween marks the last day, Fisher noted – this stand features just the fruits and vegetables grown on the 100-acre family farm. She added that the farm was founded by her grandfather Charles Fisher a century ago. The produce stand has been in operation for the last 30 years.
The farm-fresh goods include peaches, nectarines, white-fleshed fruit, cherries, apricots, pluots, plums, Asian pears, persimmons, apples, nuts and tomatoes. Bulk prices are available to those looking for even greater savings.
Like most produce stands along this heavily travelled stretch of road leading to Yosemite National Park, Fisher Farm enjoys its share of visitors during this time of year.
“Yet, we know people who will drive from the Bay Area just to come here,” Cara Fisher said. “For them, there’s no other place.”
Said one person from Oakland on Yelp, an online review site: “There are dozens of small farmers’ markets close by … I prefer driving to Fisher Farm for my fresh fruit and veggies.”
The produce stand is currently stocked with light nectarines, plums, white peaches, and summer squash. As for the fingerling potato, Cara Fisher indicated that this variety can be prepared a number of ways for consumption but not mashing.
“Most people will mix it with olive oil, garlic and salt and roast it,” she said.
Later this month, Fisher Farm is expected to stock up on peaches, heirloom tomatoes and flame seedless grapes.
“People will come here for the heirloom tomatoes; we have at least 25 varieties,” said Brenda Garcia, who has worked the produce stand for the past six years.
Featuring locally grown fruits and vegetables have been the key to this operation, Fisher believes.
“Our biggest draw is that everything is grown right here,” she said. “Local is the big thing now.”