Soil to Soul

Bite Brings Real (Good) Food to Every Palate and Plate

Article by Stephanie Meinberg

Photography by Matt Capps of Loveland Premium Portraits | Provided by Bite

Originally published in Loveland Lifestyle

Driving across 131 in Milford, you could miss it—Bite Restaurant wears a residential face, posing as a one-story house set back from the road. Likewise, you might hear their one-word name and assume trendy-chic cafe du jour. You’d be wrong on all accounts—and passing this unassuming gem would be a mistake.

Marc and Rachel Seeberger have been doing it different from the start. With Bite, a few buzzwords still apply—slow food, farm-to-table, locally sourced—but the Seebergers were living these ways of planting, growing and providing long before the mainstream movements.

“I was raised by a farmer—you know, live off the land—and then I married a chef,” Rachel explains. “So the way we ate, the way our kids ate, was very different. When we opened the restaurant, this was just how we did things.”

That’s a reference not only to their restaurant’s farm-and-garden-heavy food source, but also the style and substance of every item on Bite’s menu—part of the magic behind the name.

 “We wanted everybody to know what real food tastes like again. Truly, we wanted people to taste it and say, ‘This is flavor.’”

Both Marc and Rachel had been deep in corporate—he a classical chef who’d worked both coasts and high-end concepts; she managing risk at GE for 17 years. With three boys coming of age, they wanted out.

“I kept passing this property,” Rachel recalls. “It was up for sale, I drove around it and was like, ‘This is 2 acres on a huge, round lot where there’s parking already!’” The former Day Family home turned construction company HQ, they bought it, gutted it, converted the tiny detached garage into Marc’s dream kitchen, and Bite was born. Along with the gardens.

That bounty is abundant: Nuts saved and cracked all year long for cakes, salads, ice creams and more. Trees producing apples, pears, peaches and cherries. Grapes, blackberries, raspberries, both traditional and white strawberries. Herbs. Tomatoes. Potatoes. Flowers. Their own bees, whose honey tastes like cotton candy. 

“We can’t grow everything anymore. We’ve gotten so big we actually have other farmers grow our stuff—I give them our seeds.” In February, Rachel was already nursing more than 500 seedlings in Bite’s basement. She also has a steady cadre of farmers who provide additional produce and goods, a rotating wealth of fresh ingredients, no matter the season.

“Our guests come in one or two times a week, so we try to mix it up. Having the same stuff for them is not ok—nutritionally it’s not ok. And it’s not ok for our own family or staff who eat here every day.” Just as important as variety? The cost for the customer.

“We don’t believe in people having to dress up to go out to dinner, or not being able to get a good meal without paying a lot of money. We try to do our menus all over the place—every price range. You can come here for $30 a couple or $100. We do lunch specials during the week—instead of feeling like you have to go to McDonald’s, you can spend the same coming here and get a meal that’s actually nutritious. You know, real food.

Celebrating 8 years this month, Bite’s modus operandi is not only working, it’s thriving—even with the added complication of being somewhat at the mercy of farm partners, supplementing or changing menu items if a crop or harvest yield changes. Making the typical volatility of the restaurant biz even more challenging.

“We balance and juggle a lot. I feel like I chase my own tail—like hold on, let me make it harder for myself,” Rachel laughs. “But that’s how it is. That’s how we run it, because that’s what we have to do, right?”

“It makes me happy. This is what I was meant to do. It’s soulful.”  | 1279 State Route 131, Milford | 513.831.2483

Perfect for a shareable starter, decadent main course or European-inspired dessert, Bite’s rustic cheese board is a masterpiece all its own. A menu item crafted solely by Rachel herself—courtesy of her degree in cheese (oh yes, bona fide).

“Chefs from other restaurants come in and get the cheese plate and they’re just flabbergasted. They’re like, ‘Who’s the brains behind this? Where did you learn all these cheeses?’”

Rachel underplays her brilliance when it comes to her favorites. The secret? It’s all about the cows. “The cheeses we buy are mostly German, French, some Russian and English,” she explains. “International dairy is just better. They’re all 100 percent grass-fed in countries that don’t allow any GMOs at all. It has so much to do with the actual cream and milk used to start the whole process—it’s got a whole different flavor. It’s a whole different thing.”

Cheese, Please

Served simply with apples, strawberries and candied pecans, plus GF crackers and Sixteen Bricks bread, this tour de force (tour de fromage?) changes daily. The magic lies in the full flavor of the cheeses themselves—they need little accompaniment or cookery. “The cheeses are the star,” Rachel smiles.

This season’s selections:  

  • St. Andre Brie
  • Sappy Ewe Maple Infused Sheep and Cow Milk Cheese
  • Pesto Gouda
  • Sticky Toffee Wensleydale
  • Blue Stilton
  • Port Wine Cheddar
  • Sage Derby
  • Triple Crème Black Truffle Brie
  • Pimento Cheddar
  • Spanish Dried Olive Manchego
  • Smoked Goat Cheese

Best part—you don’t have to travel far outside Bite to get them (although a cheese tour through Bavaria, the British Isles, France and La Mancha could net you similar results).

“All these years, once or twice a month, I go to Jungle Jim’s and get one piece and then eat it with the kids. It’s been 27 years, you know—I keep trying them.”

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