Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Community Markets Make Buying Local Goods Easier

Posted By on Tue, Jul 1, 2014 at 10:31 AM

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I love discovering new local products (and some not-so-new) when I visit farmers markets and local, independent stores. The West End Farmers Market has a number of local artisans selling their specialty foods and wares in addition to the farms selling produce. I’d been meaning to check out The Raw Food Warrior for a while and was lured in by the almond and spinach hummus. And though I was perfectly happy with my $2 bag of Santitas, I tasted one of the chips made by Santo Niño de Atocha Tortilleria, and I was hooked. I got a bag of the chips (and then ate about half of it) as well as some tortillas for tacos. Much better than any tortillas or chips I’ve purchased before, even at the Mexican markets.

New small businesses set up kiosks in the Nashville Farmers’ Market on a regular basis; on my last Sunday afternoon visit, I discovered tiny doughnuts from Linda’s Mini-Donuts. I was instantly reminded of the tiny doughnut shop in Pike Place Market in Seattle. These small, freshly made doughnuts were perfect for a mid-afternoon treat. Other vendors were selling cobbler, cheesecake, kettle corn, gelato, and even dog treats.

Our local independent groceries such as The Turnip Truck and The Produce Place are also great places to find local products. Last week, I finally got around to trying the very not-so-new Bobby John Henry Bakery bread during a visit to The Produce Place for a snack. By not-so-new, I mean that Bobby John Henry has been baking bread on Music Row since 1999, but I only just got a chance to buy a loaf of the soft sourdough bread he’s been making since the beginning. It’s not the kind of sourdough you just eat on its own (I still miss a special sourdough I used to get years ago in Paris, Tenn.), but it’s a perfect sandwich bread. I've eaten it every day for nearly a week now. You can read more about Bobby John Henry, the Baker of Music Row, in this 2010 profile written by Carrington Fox.

I admit I haven't gotten much of a chance to make it to all the neighborhood farmers markets this year. Have any of you Bites readers found some great, new local products at the markets (or elsewhere) recently? If so, please share.

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