Today we headed to the Coral Gables Farmers Market. It’s not that I’ve been on some sort of farmers market rampage. Or maybe I have. In reality, I’m just trying to learn more about our local food and what’s available to us. I was also there to meet Miami’s Slow Food convivium leader and to check out the stone crabs that the group will celebrate at their Stone Crab Picnic next Saturday, but I took the opportunity to walk around and meet some of the vendors.
The Coral Gables market is much larger than the Upper East Side market we visited last week, though it has about the same number of produce stands. Here, however, I was excited to see Paradise Farms, a farm that’s known for working with chefs but not for selling retail. A girl at the stand told me today was their first day there and that they’d be doing an 11-week trial to see how they did. “So far, we’ve gotten a big turnout,” she told me.
The other two stands carried conventional produce, but one in particular had a good selection, including peppers, greens, bananas, papayas and wax beans.
A stand that carried spices and spice and tea blends was getting a lot of attention. The scent of spices just drew you in. We bought three tea blend mixes, including a blend of hibiscus flower, mango and papaya that looked and smelled delicious.
The stand of seafood that I initially went to the market from was bustling. Judy, “the stone crab lady,” was sick today but her children manned the booth. The seafood is brought from Everglades City. Other things we tasted: local honey and bread from the Chocolate Fashion, a French bakery in the Gables. Bottom line: It’s not the perfect market, but for Paradise Farms, the tea blends and the seafood, I’d go back.
[Updated with market location]
Coral Gables Farmers Market
405 Biltmore Way (in front of city hall)
Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., through end of March
[tags] miami, farmers markets, organic [/tags]