And with spring, he said, come requests for ramps.
The wild, pungent plant generates interests from diehard fans and visitors who feel compelled to take some home with them, just to try.
"When it warms up, you'll be able to smell them all the way down the sidewalk," he said, grinning. "Some call it a stink; some call it a stench."
Hathaway sells ramps to some regular customers who drive them to eager chefs in Washington, D.C. and New York City.
"I have a few hardcore ramp buyers," he said.
Not sure what to do with the onion-like plant? Hathaway will gladly share some ideas that he uses at home.
"Saute some ramps, asparagus with potatoes," he said. "Then the next morning drop an egg into the leftovers and add some Parmesan cheese. I love it."
He recalled church dinners in Elkview as a child when the men ate so many ramps, and suffered the smelly aftereffects, that they had to sit away from the main group.
"It's a distinctive odor," he said.
For those who want to try the traditional West Virginia delicacy — Hathaway says Richwood ramps are the best — his WV Marketplace stocks lots of options already prepared.
There is ramp jam and jelly, ramp relish, ramp salad dressing, ramp shortnin', ramp biscuit mix, ramp salt, ramp mustard and ramp vinegar to choose from.
Tourists make a beeline for that shelf, he said.
"Anything ramps, people from out of the state want to buy it," Hathaway said.
On April 20, Barbara Beury McCallum of Charleston will be on hand there to autograph her popular ramp recipe book, "Reekin' Ramps."
Contact writer Cheryl Caswell at cher...@dailymail.com or 304-348-4832.