The Ultimate Unlist-List of Global Farmers’ Markets
I love a good list. Lists are so media worthy, exclusive and definite. There are lists upon lists rating everything in the world from lipstick to lavender and everything in between. How about the farmers’ markets of the world?
There are lists for them too. Some lists rate markets by size or scope, while other lists classify markets by type of food available, organic versus non-organic, or indoor versus outdoor. Similar to film and book reviews, ratings are relative just like food preference is relative, which is why ratings and lists ought to be taken as a “by the way… this may be of interest to you” type of guide. Pardon the philosophical nature of this questioning but what difference does it make whether you are shopping at the best market in the city? What type of markets warrant using a superlative such as “the best”?
At the end of the day, does it really matter how a market is ranked as long as you are able to find what you need, to try some new things, to have a break from your grocery store routine, to have the opportunity to engage in a dialogue with the local producers, to support the local business community, to try eating seasonal or to learn about the origin of your food? Your reason for visiting a market is individual and personal, that is why our philosophy at Countlan is to uncover cool and interesting things and throw it out there for you to judge.
It is our goal to find and expose you to as many new things as possible so you can figure out what sources of information are valuable to your life and edit the rest. Let us do the leg work. You do discerning. The inspiration for our “Un-list, list of farmers markets” comes from pouring over hundreds of blogs, review sites and impromptu surveys to distill a collection of opinions from the virtual street.
Countlan’s Un-list, List of Farmers Markets Around the World
City: Montreal Market: Marche Jean-Talon
The draw: Farmers stands, fish stores, butcher stalls, real maple syrup, cidre de glace, jars of maple butter, maple candy, Boulangerie Premiere Moisson and handmade charcuterie.
City: Copenhagen Market: Torvehallerne
The draw: The architecture of the building. Diversity of food (local and international), fruits and vegetables, mustard and sea salts, Duck confit sandwiches from Ma Poule, local fish, baked goods, oils, the Coffee Collective coffee bar, rhubarb juice, ox meat
City: CapeTown Market: Neighbourgoods Market
The draw: Farm fresh, organic, locally produced specialty goods. Neighbourgoods market is an independent initiative to reinvent the public market- housed in an old sky lit Victorian warehouse and courtyard at the old biscuit mill in the emerging industrial neighbourhood of Woodstock, Cape Town.
City: Mexico City Market: Mercado el 100
The draw: This is an outdoor organic farmers market where everything sold here has been produced within 100 miles. The produce is supplied by small organic producers (free of pesticides, herbicides). This market carries over 250 products such as rabbit, quail, honey, chilaquiles, mole, lemon balm, cheeses, lettuces.
City: Adelaide Market: Adelaide Central Market
The draw: Long standing tradition in the community, this market was established in 1869. It contains 80 stalls in a covered market setting and offers divers products like Laksa Sorbet from Zed’s Café, Australian cows milk feta, game meats such as kangaroo meat, wild pork, wild goat, fish, homemade Greek yoghurt from the Yoghurt Shop.
City: Kyoto Market: Nishiki Ichiba
The draw: Known as the kitchen of Kyoto, this narrow shopping street is approximately 390 meters long housed in a 400 year old covered food market which has more than 100 shops and restaurants. It specializes in seafood, produce, knives, cookware and seasonal Kyoto items like Japanese sweets, pickles dried seafood and sushi.
City: London Market: Borough Market
The draw: British and international produce and goods spread over a combination of indoor and outdoor stalls, retail shops and restaurants. Not to be missed: Farm fresh food, Ostrich burgers, Monmouth coffee shop, mushroom pate, Greedy Goat ice cream in raspberry + chilli or Billy Vanilli, handmade fudge, fruit tarts, game meats (partridge, venison), oysters, and curries, olive oils.
City: Detroit Market: Eastern Market
The draw: Walk through blocks of indoor and outdoor market stalls connected by a series of warehouses. The perimeter of the market houses a variety of mainstay retail shops that compliment the market wares. Find fresh veggies, okra, potatoes, sugar beets, flowers, spices, pies, cheeses, green curry and pork sausages, honeys, canned pickles, free range eggs, garden accessories, and nuts from Rocky Peanut company.
City: Munich Market: Viktualienmarkt
The draw: Large outdoor market where you can find a mix of local produce and European goods. Don’t miss out on the beautiful fresh flowers, gardening accessories and gifts, juices, vegetables, fruits, wine, bread, pretzels, spices, sausages and cheese. Right next door to the outdoor market in the same square is the high-end specialty food indoor market, Schrannenhalle.