Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Ottawa Farmers' Market
On the weekend I hit up the Ottawa Farmers' Market at Sylvia Holden Park, an alternate location due to the Ex being held at Lansdowne Park. Apparently because of the temporary location, not all vendors were there, but having never been to the market at Lansdowne before, I was quite charmed by the ambiance at Sylvia Holden Park.
It was like a little Farmers' Market Village! Families strolling along checking out the stalls, kids on swings, dogs following their noses from vendor to vendor and beautiful grassy areas with picnic tables set up for breakfast and lunch. The vendors were very friendly and there was an abundance of choice from Niagara fruit to sweet corn to artichokes to apples, and everything in between.
I had heard through the grapevine that this market was not to be missed and that I would be wowed by the variety and the quality. It was a good experience and I did pick up some tasty fruit and veg, but perhaps the fact that all vendors were not there did impact my overall impression. Not to say that I was dissatisfied with anything, perhaps it was all the hype that made me expect more than I should have. However, there were some unique things there that I hadn't seen yet at a farmers' market in Ottawa such as: elk steaks, wild mushrooms, zucchini flowers, Niagara peaches and even ice cream and iced tea vendors!
Overall it was a wonderful market and it had a laid back, natural vibe due to being in the park. I will definitely be back when it's back at Lansdowne to check it out in full effect. On a delicious note, the peaches were red haven peaches from Niagara, and they were absolutely perfect -- the "peachiest" peaches I have ever tasted! Trust me -- buy some peaches from the grocery store, then buy some from a farmers' market and you won't believe the difference!