FRESH FROM OUR FARMERS
Holiday shopping at Santa Rosa farmers markets
Published: Wednesday, November 21, 2012 at 4:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, November 21, 2012 at 10:31 a.m.
Rain or shine, it is likely most of us will be heading out this morning for holiday food shopping. Whether you need all of Thanksgiving's fixings or are snagging a few last-minute items, our farmers markets are well prepared for crowds. Today is often one of the busiest market days of the year.
There are two options, the Redwood Empire Farmers Market, which takes place in the east parking lot of the Santa Rosa Veterans Building, and the Santa Rosa Original Certified Farmers Market, located in the outdoor pavilion of the Wells Fargo Center for the Arts. Both markets open at 8:30 a.m. and wrap up at noon.
At the Redwood Empire Market, there will be fresh Dungeness crab from Santa Rosa Seafood, where you'll also find oysters, clams and other fish and shellfish. If you still need a turkey, Victorian Farmstead is bringing four or five to the market, along with a selection of local eggs, chicken, lamb, pork and beef. Felton Acres, which usually attends on Saturdays, will be there today, with a bounty of eggs along with chicken, lamb, goat and a few cured hams.
Triple T Ranch has a huge array of sweet and hot chiles and plenty of braising greens; they should have fresh sage and Italian parsley, too. Ortiz Farm has a diverse harvest that includes winter squash, braising greens, onions, potatoes, parsley and cilantro; they always have beautiful wreaths, as well, and fresh flowers.
French Garden Farm has a diverse harvest, including winter squash, several types of carrots and fresh herbs. Gourmet Growers has mushrooms, including crimini and portobello. Lambert Apples has just what you would expect them to have, as does Sonoma County Honey, and Neufeld Farms has its familiar array of dried fruits and nuts. Schletewitz Family Farms has seasonal fruit, including persimmons and pomegranates, along with sweet potatoes.
Pan-O-Rama Bakery is the market's bread vendor, Cook's Spices has a wide selection of organic spices and spice blends and there's olive oil from The Olive Press.
A fairly new vendor, Physis Food, offers both prepared foods, including soups and salsas, and prepared ingredients, like pumpkin puree, ready for you to use in pies and such. And it's all made using market produce.
If you work up an appetite, there's plenty to enjoy on the spot, including Ethiopian food from Ya Martha, southern food from Red Rose Catering and soup and sandwiches from Chai's Gourmet.
The Santa Rosa Original Certified Farmers Market has fresh chestnuts, chanterelle mushrooms and quince from Sonoma Coast Organic Produce, likely their last market appearance of the year. Bohemian Well Being Farm has specialty mushrooms, including delicious maitakes.
Salmon Creek Ranch has whole duck, duck breast, legs and racks of goat and a big selection of grass fed beef, including prime rib roast, New York steak and filet mignon. Dreamcatcher Ranch has lamb.
Weirauch Farm and Creamery offers a delicious selection of hand-crafted cheeses. There are apples from EGB Farm, which also has walnuts from this year's harvest and more than a dozen kinds of seasoned almonds.
Several vendors, including The Patch and Hector Alvarez, have onions and The Patch has delicious green beans, too, along with the last of the year's tomatoes and sweet peppers.
Ma and Pa's Garden has the best celery root around, along with excellent potatoes, broccoli and cauliflower. Armstrong Valley Farm has braising greens, garlic, onions, potatoes, lettuce and, if you arrive early enough, eggs. Min-Hee Hill Farm has excellent lettuces, hot chiles, braising greens and more. Twin Palms, a new vendor, has Thai chiles, torpedo onions, winter squash and, possibly, fresh lettuces.
Bernier Farms garlic (they have several varieties) is among the best anywhere and they also have excellent garlic, beets, arugula and other greens and, fingers crossed, pomegranates. First Light Farm has a big selection of dry-farmed potatoes, excellent kale and winter squash.
There are three bread vendors, Raymond's Bakery of Cazadero, Full Circle Bakery of Penngrove and Costeaux Bakery of Healdsburg.
Dominique's Sweets has pies, tarts, galettes and macarons and Gandolf's Fine Chocolates has suave bonbons and truffles.
If you want to linger for breakfast or lunch, Lata's Indian Cuisine and the Green Grocer will feed you well. Gaga Cafe has brewed-on-the-spot coffee.
The Redwood Farmers Market, founded in 2012 and currently managed by Cindy Holland, takes place on Wednesday from 8:30 a.m. to noon and on Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the east parking lot of the Santa Rosa Veterans Building. The Santa Rosa Original Certified Farmers Market, founded in 1967 and currently managed by Jaime Smedes, takes place on Wednesday from 8:30 a.m. to noon and on Saturday from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the outdoor pavilion of the Wells Fargo Center for the Arts.
All rights reserved. This copyrighted material may not be re-published without permission. Links are encouraged.