Story: ADAM HUNT | Photography: Chris Redd
Located in the Ocala International Airport Landmark Aviation Building is one very unique restaurant – Thyme Fly’s Bistro. This establishment has half a century of culinary experience under its roof, yielding a wide variety of international dishes for your dinning pleasure. Thyme Fly’s Bistro’s cooking staff is lead by owner Bruce Cordrey. Cordrey, a self taught restaurateur with a knack for fine French cuisine. But this isn’t his only labor of love. Cordrey has a strong fondness for the motion picture industry, lending his talents to movies like Flipper, Spy Kids and the 1994 blockbuster True Lies.
Thyme Fly’s Bistro plates up some of the freshest salads in town. Using only locally grown produce and vegetables to present an insurpassable level of freshness. “You’ll find no iceberg lettuce here,” says Cordrey with a cheeky smile. The salads crafted at Thyme Fly’s Bistro are freshly bedded mixed green delights. Patrons have the option of adding grilled chicken or chicken salad for just an additional two bucks. There is also the option to add steak or seared Ahi Tuna for a minimal up charge.
The salad selection at Thyme Fly’s Bistro is as diverse as they come. For example, one of the menu salad favorites takes your taste buds on an island getaway. A Greek marriage of marinated artichoke hearts, pitted black olives, feta cheese, vine ripe tomatoes, bell peppers, red onions and pepperoncini peppers make up this taste sensation. Another top coice of the Bistro crowd is the Spinach Salad. This packs a Popeye’s size punch of baby spinach, quartered egg, bacon crumbles, sweet strawberries and candied pecans, topped with aged feta cheese. And of course you couldn’t have a salad selection without the classic Chef. Cordrey serves up a crisp bed of chopped leafy greens, pillowed by plump grape tomatoes, red onions, smoked ham, turkey, homemade croutons and both Swiss and Cheddar Jack cheeses. “Damn!,” exclaims one very satisfied customer. “Now that is a salad.” All salads at the Bistro come accompanied with your choice of savory house-made dressing.
Thyme Fly’s Bistro also has a super selection of sandwiches and wraps made on your choice of a fresh hoagie roll, tomato-basil flatbread or spinach flatbread. Every sandwich and wrap comes with a crisp pickle and your choice of a fresh side to include pasta salad, fruit cup, garden salad, seasoned fries or onion rings.
Sticking to his roots, Cordrey has a french classic on the menu. The French Dip is a pile of delicious thinly sliced roast beef smothered in provolone cheese, hugged within a fresh hoagie roll and served with a house-made Au Jus and horseradish sauce. Bistro goers can also add sautéed mushrooms or onions for an up charge of only fifty cents. There were two other gut busting and delicious sandwiches on the menu that caught my eye, the Bistro Grinder and Bistro Club.
The Bistro Grinder is a smash up of Black Forest ham, Genoa salami, capicolla and smoked provolone, all topped off with lettuce, tomato, red onion, bell pepper, sweet banana pepper and balsamic vinaigrette. The Club is a meaty triple threat of Black Forest ham, smoked turkey and crisp bacon blanketed with white American cheese, lettuce, tomato and mayo on Brioche bread.
Cordrey grills up a delicious treat with his bodacious bunch of burgers. The Bistro’s burgers are certified Angus on a seasoned Brioche bun. The first mouth watering burger that overwhelmed my taste-buds was the Bacon Bleu Burger. A full favored apple-wood smoked bacon burger, smothered in a homemade bleu cheese dressing with delicate bleu crumbles. But the fun doesn’t stop there. Cordrey also features a fresh take on the burger experience with the Guacamole Burger and the Bella Vegetarian Burger. The Guacamole Burger is a juicy half-pound burger topped with a fresh organic spread of guacamole. Yum! While the Bella Vegetarian Burger dances across the palate with sautéed Portobello mushrooms, roasted red peppers, artichoke hearts, grilled tomatoes and feta cheese.
Thyme Fly’s Bistro also has an amazing breakfast selection as well. The Sunrise Sandwich looks as pleasing as the sun setting atop the runway at the Bistro. Cordrey developed other culinary creations like the hardy Farmer’s Choice – a steak and egg breakfast with crispy home fries. Their toppling pancake stack rivals all other mounds of fluffy goodness. And for the classic breakfast dinner, Thyme Fly’s Bistro offers their Sausage Gravy & Biscuit plate. This sensation is made up of two peaked mountains of freshly made biscuits with a savory white gravy mirroring the Rockies’ snowcapped view. Breathe taking – and delicious!
The Thyme Fly’s Bistro has also added some new dishes to the menu. Cordrey has put a unique spin on an English staple. The polished Fish and Chips is a basket of lightly fried Cod with a flaky and crispy seasoned topcoat. The Chips are divine, but perfectly sliced and crisped to the touch. You can find this dish being served every Friday at the Bistro.
Thyme Fly’s Bistro also caters with its sister company, Savannah’s Catering, providing both a service on the ground or on the fly. Yes, customers can place an order right on the flight line and have it delivered to their plane. So if you’re ever at the Landmark Aviation Building and hear your tummy rumble like a 747, stop in at the Thyme Fly’s Bistro for a truly uplifting experience!
If You Go…
1200 SW 60th Ave
Ocala, Florida 34484
Mon-Sat 10-8, Sun 12-6