Living

HOW I GO COLUMBIA PRIMAL GOURMET’S OWNER/CHEF GREG MARTIN

Greg Martin
Greg Martin

After a decade as an executive chef and food and beverage director in private clubs, Greg Martin spent almost six years in the health care field as a director of dietary services. There, he learned a lot about meal planning, special diets and how to use nutrition to enhance the human body.

That’s when the use of paleo and primal-style cooking and using only fresh and local ingredients started to develop into a business concept. After some encouragement from his girlfriend, Martin decided last year to combine all those skills and open Primal Gourmet on St. Andrews Road – a community-oriented place where people can get healthy, freshly prepared foods that are sourced as locally as possible. Through the restaurant, Martin designs a fresh menu each week for chef’s meal packs that can be purchased online and delivered to one of many pickup locations around town every Tuesday.

EAT

Being a chef and working a lot of hours doesn’t leave a lot of time for going out, so I always make it count. As all my friends know, Terra has been my favorite for years. Chef Mike Davis and his team never disappoint, and neither does the infamous bartender Andy Haddock. I also enjoy a good trip to see Chef Todd Woods at The Oak Table for brunch or dinner. Speaking of brunch, Tazza Kitchen is my new favorite spot to start a lazy Sunday afternoon. For something casual with friends, I can’t go wrong with a Thirsty Fellow pizza or some tacos at Publico. Finally, if I could survive solely off cake from Silver Spoon Bake Shop and cookies from Blue Flour, I probably would.

DRINK

I’m not as young as I once was, so most of my drinking happens at dinner. When I do go out for a beverage, I like to go where my Great Dane, Luna, is allowed to join me. We enjoy spending a few hours at River Rat Brewery or Flying Saucer with some pints and, hopefully, nice weather. We’ve also been spotted at Jake’s for Yappy Hour once or twice.

LISTEN

Probably my favorite way to check out live music is at one of the many festivals we have around town throughout the year. Primal Gourmet is a proud sponsor of Reggaetronic and DriftJam every summer. Columbia has lots of talented musicians who are always there, and it’s great to see people supporting them. I’m also a big fan of live jazz and blues, so I’ve spent many evenings at Speakeasy in Five Points checking out whoever was playing.

PLAY

It’s no secret that my favorite thing to do is head to Lake Murray and relax on my boat. Nothing beats taking a boat ride and floating in the lake with some friends and a few drinks on a “Famously Hot” day. I also enjoy staying active by walking my dog at the Cayce-West Columbia Riverwalk. Health is very important to me, and I like staying fit(ish) and spending a few hours each week in the gym. I’m a member at Base 10 Method and enjoy their intense programming and family atmosphere.

SEE

My favorite thing to see all year is 80,000-plus of my closest friends at Williams-Brice Stadium cheering for our Fighting Gamecocks. Our game day atmosphere is amazing, and I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else on a fall Saturday. I haven’t missed a home game in a long time. I also like seeing what’s new at the Soda City Market on Main Street each Saturday.

Janet Jones Kendall, jjkendall@thestate.com

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