BUY LOCAL: 12 GO-TO FARMERS MARKETS IN SYDNEY

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MARIAM GABAJI

SEP 26, 2019

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It’s a well-known fact: Aussies take pride in eating their local produce. And why shouldn’t we? The crisp veggies and ripe fruits among other fresh farm products have so much flavour that the imported stuff just doesn’t cut it.

Whether you’re living in Sydney or visiting, our city’s farmers markets are the best places to get your share of the seasonal produce at great prices. So, get your cash out, have your tote bags handy, and ready your appetite — here are our favourite spots to visit for an incredibly wholesome experience.

Inside the Addison Road Centre in the Inner West, the Marrickville market is buzzing every Sunday with Sydneysiders keen to pick up organically-grown produce. On arrival, get your caffeine fix from a fair trade coffee stand, and pair it with a warm and creamy Portuguese tart before hitting the rest of the stalls. From there, pick up sweet and juicy Mandarins; splurge on Tasmanian truffles; or stock up on avocados, cheeses, olives, cured meats, or even racks of lamb. In addition to the tasters, there’s also delicious hot food (including several vegan options) and baked goods on offer. If you’re lucky, there may even be live music to accompany you through the day. Before heading out, grab a few potted herb plants to have your very own garnishes ready to use at home.

Attention all Sydney vegans; this monthly market in Moore Park is your new haven. Set up with over 100 stalls, you’ll find delicious plant-based food and produce, art, clothes, homewares, cosmetics, and so much more, all made by cruelty-free methods. The market normally runs on a theme—such as “Plastic Free July”—encouraging and educating people on environmentally-friendly ways. Anytime you stop by you can expect a day is filled with activities, including yoga, talks with activism groups, live entertainment, and music. With all-round positive vibes and like-minded people, the Sydney Vegan Market is truly worth visiting every month.

Pick up seasonal produce and stock up for the week at Paddy’s Fresh Food Saturday market in Homebush West. Unlike other farmers markets, this is a no-frills experience in a massive warehouse space that is almost overwhelmingly filled with lines after lines of fruits and vegetables being sold by passionate growers. You’ll also find a fresh seafood section at the far end as well as other stalls selling packaged items including jars of honey and pasta sauce. It’s not unusual to find market-goers rolling around trolleys filled with whole boxes of produce either; many local chefs, restaurateurs, and shop owners stock up at this Saturday market. Fitt Tip: Either go early in the morning to avoid the rush or visit the market towards the end of the day. When it nears closing time is when growers start to give away goods for a steal, shouting into the crowd things like: “Three dollars for a crate. Going once, going twice…”.

The little gem known as the Kings Cross farmers market is a community favourite and the perfect place to start your Saturday or Sunday. It loops around the dandelion fountain in Fitzroy Gardens and offers a charming and lively setting that compensates for its small size. Here, you’ll find stalls offering certified-organic vegetables and fruits, local and French cheese, scratch-made bread and pâtisseries, and fresh and smoked fish, alongside other gourmet goodies. Wander around with a cup of coffee; enjoy Asian dumplings, handmade pasta, tacos, or Turkish gözlemes; and take back home beautiful, fresh-cut flowers to decorate your house or give as a gift. It’s easy to see how a trip here is part of a weekly routine for so many.

Are you on the lookout for gourmet food and a spot that will help you check off everything on your grocery list? Look no further than the Orange Grove Market, which has been running every Saturday since the 1990s. Located within the expanse of a primary school in Lilyfield, the vibrant space is filled with unique things to see, taste, and buy. Grab their famous egg and bacon roll for breakfast and wash it down with coffee before browsing vendors selling conventional fruits and veggies, delicious baked goods (the cakes are to die for), and quality meats. Or, if you fancy, go there for an early lunch and share plates of paella, pies, and Japanese pancakes with friends. And with offerings in boutique fashion, Aboriginal art, homewares made from sustainable materials, and so much more, you definitely won’t leave empty-handed.

Highly popular among foodies and coffee-lovers in Sydney, this market is set up in a relaxed park. After the mandatory stop for a sensational morning pick-me-up, stroll the stalls for seasonal fruits and vegetables, artisan butter, cheese, and yogurt, smoked seafood, pastries, sweets, chocolate, and more. You might have to pay a bit more for some of their handcrafted goods, but it’s hard to beat the quality from these local makers. So, what are you waiting for? Mark your calendar and head over on the first and third Saturday of each month — we’ll see you there!

On the vibrant beachfront grounds of Bondi Beach Public School is the Bondi Farmers Market, which is perfect for those looking for a laid-back setting. Its seasonal produce is top-notch—think juicy melons and peaches on a warm summer day—and the market also has a great selection of artisan breads, organically-grown gourmet meats, farmstead cheeses, and roasted coffee beans. Hungry? Before buying all your groceries, get yourself a delicious dose of Bar Pho — their broth is packed full of flavour and their meat is so, so tender. That, coupled with the sea breeze, will take you to your happy place.

Spice up a dull Thursday with a trip to the Organic Food Market of Double Bay. Located inside Guilfoyle Park in Woollahra, this experience is best on a sunny day, when the backdrop of the dense trees is as green as ever. Enjoy certified organic goods, coffee, hot meals, and baked goods including babka — a delicious pastry made from a doubled and twisted length of yeast dough. Although smaller than the other markets, this one makes up for it with a few extra perks such as live music, farm animals, and pony rides.

Australia’s pride is its locally-grown produce, and Tramsheds Growers Market focuses on just that. However, it stands out for promoting goods cultivated through sustainable means. Tramsheds mall, located in Forest Lodge, is already buzzing each day with cafes, restaurants, and boutique stores, but on a Sunday, it transforms into a growers market, where local farmers and purveyors sell their produce, baked goods, meats, cheese, pasta, and even wine.

Operating since 1995, the much-loved, eco-conscious Organic Food Market of Frenchs Forest is a Sunday treat for so many. However, as of September 1, 2019, Frenchs Forest market shifted to a new location: Pittwater RSL Club in Mona Vale. Have no fear, though, their delicious and extensive range of gourmet food and certified organic produce, including free-range eggs and grass-fed beef, is still on offer. Indulge in kombucha, barista-style coffee, or one of the many cuisines serving hot food—think Vietnamese, Indian, Turkish—before picking up some fresh-cut flowers to decorate your home.

The Flora Street Car Park in Sutherlands transforms itself into the vibrant Shire Farmers’ Market every Saturday. Besides the number of stalls selling straight-from-the-farm produce, visitors can expect an extensive selection of goodies that are sure to make your breakfast, brunch, or lunch truly memorable. Although their stalls change weekly (look at their Facebook page for updates), the range of items offered never disappoints. Think coconut coffee, mouth-watering glazed donuts, dumplings, salads, poke bowls, vegan cakes and cupcakes, and so much more.

A Friday morning staple, this Centenary Square operation has everything you could want in a local market and a diverse range of vendors you’ll be hard-pressed to find anywhere else. Swing by to fill your tote bag with regional items, including everything from nuts and breads to honey, gluten-free desserts, and succulents. And if you’ve worked up an appetite with all that shopping, make a pit stop at one of the prepared food stalls and take your pick of homemade gnocchi, Mediterranian-style wraps, Phillipino-style BBQ skewers, and more.

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