A visit to the Austin Farmers’ Market is now part of my Saturday morning routine. This outdoor market in Republic Square Park (between Fourth and Fifth Streets on Guadalupe) is a project of the Sustainable Food Center.
The Austin Farmers’ Market is open each Saturday from 9 AM to 1 PM, rain or shine. I try to walk over by 10 AM for the best selection and shortest lines.
One side of the park is mostly farm stands selling produce, meat and dairy. I have been sampling vegetables from different farms each week. I really like Johnson’s Backyard Garden because they have the most variety. According to their web site, Johnson’s Backyard Garden is a “70-acre Community Supported farm only five miles east of downtown Austin.” With a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) membership, you can receive weekly or bi-weekly deliveries of fresh organic vegetables and fruits. Or you can visit their stand at the market on Saturday mornings.
I love the salad mix from Blackland Prairie Family Farm. The leaves are tender and almost melt in your mouth.
My favorite bakery stand is Serious Sourdough Bakery. The owners bake everything themselves and drive into Austin from Lampasas each week. So far I’ve tried – and greatly enjoyed – the date nut bread, gluten-free biscuits and, of course, the sourdough bread. They also sell pies, but alas, no cupcakes for Bill.
There are over 50-75 vendors at the market each week. Tamale, kolache and coffee stands are quite popular. SoAP (South Austin People) sells organic soaps. The Mediterranean Chef makes great tabuleh. Bola Pizza drives up with their “mobile wood fired oven”…I didn’t even know those existed! Many people first order a handmade pizza, do their shopping and then pick up the hot pizza to eat at home.
Local musicians provide live music each week – this is Austin after all! I enjoyed recent performances by Four Pegs and a Pub, and La Strada.