What better place is there to sample the local flavor than a fresh, abundant farmer’s market? Not only can you shop for locally-sourced ingredients, but you have the chance to support the area’s artisans as well as mingle amongst the natives!
Here are some of the very best farmer’s markets in which to shop for your farm-to-table feast or to simply enjoy indigenous foods and entertainment.
Pike Place Market
Seattle is chockful of fabulous tourist attractions, but its original Pike Place Market is one of the best. The bustling outdoor market is one of the nation’s oldest and boasts over 200 independent businesses, restaurants, and specialty grocery stores. Did you know that the original Starbucks coffee shop is located here? While you’re strolling about sipping a cappuccino, be sure to catch the free show as local fish mongers throw their goods to unsuspecting visitors!
Green City Market
Renowned chef Abby Mandel created this Chicago market in the late 1990’s. Influenced by European farmer’s markets, Green City Market lays title to the city’s sole “green” farmers market. True foodies will want to buy the official Green City Market Cookbook to use with all the meats, cheeses, breads, produce, and more you’ll snatch up. The market runs from inside the Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum in winter and at Lincoln Park from May through October.
Mill City Farmer’s Market
Minneapolis’ Mill City Farmers Market was one of the first in town to cultivate local farmers as well as seasonal sustainable foods. Organic produce abounds, but there’s also plenty of meats and dairy for the carnivores in the family! Weekly demonstrations are popular with the locals, and the market offers up music and family-friendly activities as well.
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Downtown Phoenix Public Market
Visitors to this superb, open-air farmer’s market are in for a double treat: a biweekly open-air farmer’s market and a daily market café. Plus, every Friday the market partners with the Phoenix Street Food Coalition to bring in local food trucks. Usually, there are over ten trucks to choose from, including the Short Leash Hotdogs and The Maine Lobster Lady.
Santa Monica’s Main Street
Southern California has a plethora of outstanding farmer’s markets, with Santa Monica’s Main Street Sunday Market topping the list. You can spend the better part of a day here picking California-grown produce as well as attending the extravagant street festival and carnival which features live bands, pony rides, a petting zoo and face painting for the kiddies. And don’t forget to sample the copious goodies cooked up by local chefs! Who knows, you might be served an appetizer by the next Mario Battali or Bobby Flay!
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