The Harris family has brought farm-fresh local produce to Tucker residents for the last 14 years. Open March through December and located at 3863 Lawrenceville Highway, Sherry’s Produce is a throwback to times when local farmers would set up stands in small communities, or alongside rural roads, to sell their crops. Not only is the colorful, flavorful produce a refreshing sight to encounter, so is the down-home friendliness of the folks who work there.
For many of us who hail from more rural areas, where roadside vats of boiled peanuts and watermelons being sold from the beds of pickups are commonplace, Sherry’s also offers a bit of nostalgia.
I was truly lucky the day I parked in the Value Village parking lot and strolled through the back entrance of the produce stand – the parking lot out back is plentiful and free of charge. It was the last week for blackberries. Jeremy Taylor, a close friend of the Harris family and employee at Sherry’s for the last eight years, filled my shopping bag and answered my questions knowledgeably as I perused the produce.
Huge, ripe tomatoes; butterbeans shelled that very morning; the juiciest, sweetest and most affordable blackberries I’ve had this season; purple and white bell peppers; firm banana peppers; sweet potatoes ready for baking.
“Those came from south Georgia,” Taylor would say as I reached for one item, “and those from South Carolina, came in this morning,” as I saddled up to another. With a smile, he would tell me about the Harris family and the work they’ve done with the Atlanta State Farmer’s Market and the DeKalb County Farmer’s Market. “They’ve always been farmers of sorts,” Taylor noted.
Currently, you’ll find the best the Southeast has to offer at Sherry's, from peaches and vine-ripened tomatoes to watermelons, apples, potatoes and beans. They often carry a selection of fresh cheeses, and when the heat isn’t so oppressive, beautiful, local plants and creative hanging baskets are on display for sale.
The Harris brothers were onsite, helping one customer after another, and during my short visit there was steady stream of people hunting for fresh fruits and veggies at a good price. When asked about his experience working at the stand, especially during these scorching summer months, Taylor said, “I love working here, always have, but the heat has been difficult this year. Not just to work in” - as most of the stand is outdoors, covered, but in the heat - “but for our customers too. I hate having to tell someone that fresh, silver corn is a dollar for just a few ears,” he concluded, shaking his head a bit ruefully.
I must have responded with a somewhat confused look because a few ears of corn for a buck sounded good to me. He laughed and said that low prices were something they really prided themselves in. “Sherry will usually sell the produce for a cheaper price if, for some reason, market prices are higher than usual – even at her own loss, she wants to keep things cheap,” Taylor said.
You’ll notice by searching for information on this great produce stand that Sherry’s doesn’t have a dedicated website promoting their business, nor do most of the folks working there utilize email. Not a problem, Taylor told me, their business does just fine through word of mouth and returning patrons. As they should. Their selection was diverse and the freshest I’ve seen nearby; their prices were lower than our DeKalb Farmers Market, for the most part; and the personal touches – someone will help you carry your load to your car with a smile – make Sherry’s a true community gem.