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Mussina

Union Square Greenmarket

169 posts in this topic

Two questions --

1 -- is the Union Square market open on Wednesday this time of year (specifically will it be open next week on Wednesday)?

2-- any first hand reports of what the farmers are selling? Asparagus, ramps, fiddleheads etc?

Many thanks in advance!

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Yes, it is open on Wednesdays. And Mondays, Fridays and Saturdays too.

We've been away, so I can't tell you what you'll find - judging by my little 47th Street market, there'll be greens, asparagus and even summer squashes. I think you can expect ramps too. Don't know about fiddleheads.

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It's open on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday year-round.

This past Wednesday I came home with Jersey asparagus and upstate NY ramps, along with some very tiny potatoes. There are also salad and other greens showing up in good number. Didn't see any rhubarb yet, though.

There are great seafood vendors on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday...the L.I. clams, mussels and scallops, as well as the fin fish, are superb.


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There were several stands selling rhubarb last Saturday, so I would imagine there'd be at least one on Wednesday.


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There was one stand with rhubarb last Wednesday.

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Wast just at the market on Monday. Very few stands, several breads and cakes are sold.

What really surprised me was the proliferation of apples being sold at several stands. APPLES??? I inquired at one, and they said they were "from last year". Frankly, I thought this practice was disallowed at these markets. I thought everything had to be grown by the seller, and had to be fresh. I guess I was naive. Too bad.

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Menton1 -- those apples most likely *were* grown by the seller and then stored in cold storage (apples store very well, and certain varieties better than others) by the seller over the winter. I don't see why this is "too bad" at all!

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Menton1 -- those apples most likely *were* grown by the seller and then stored in cold storage (apples store very well, and certain varieties better than others) by the seller over the winter. I don't see why this is "too bad" at all!

Somehow, "storage apples" sold at a Farmer's Market just doesn't cut it for me. I want homegrown, as-close-to-picked as possible. Isn't that the theory of a Farmers Market?

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Menton1 -- those apples most likely *were* grown by the seller and then stored in cold storage (apples store very well, and certain varieties better than others) by the seller over the winter. I don't see why this is "too bad" at all!

Somehow, "storage apples" sold at a Farmer's Market just doesn't cut it for me. I want homegrown, as-close-to-picked as possible. Isn't that the theory of a Farmers Market?

These are home-grown and still reasonably fresh. If you don't want them, don't buy them, but they are within the rules. I recently bought some apples at my home farmers market that are still quite good. Its better than the growers going out of business or having to charge absurdly high prices when they are "just-picked" because that is the only time they can be sold.


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These are home-grown and still reasonably fresh. If you don't want them, don't buy them, but they are within the rules. I recently bought some apples at my home farmers market that are still quite good. Its better than the growers going out of business or having to charge absurdly high prices when they are "just-picked" because that is the only time they can be sold.

Agreed - I find the Empires and the Golden Delicious store really well - the Empires I bought last week still had the white bloom that you see on very fresh fruit, and they were crisp and juicy (I think I got them at Migliori's).


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These are home-grown and still reasonably fresh. If you don't want them, don't buy them, but they are within the rulesIts better than the growers going out of business or having to charge absurdly high prices when they are "just-picked" because that is the only time they can be sold.

There's something wrong with selling 8 month old apples at a Farmer's Market. If it's just to keep them in business, well, we can let them sell bananas, grapes, and all the standard stuff from the NY Wholesale markets as well, I suppose.

In Europe, they have street farmer's markets everywhere, and everything in those markets is grown by the vendor and picked within the last few days. I don't see those vendors going under, either. And their prices are quite reasonable.

EDITED TO ADD:

In reading over the Greenmarket website, it says that Greenmarkets' vendors are there to showcase "homegrown, seasonal crops." So I don't know about being against the rules, but "seasonal" to me doesn't mean apples in May...


Edited by menton1 (log)

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In reading over the Greenmarket website, it says that Greenmarkets' vendors are there to showcase "homegrown, seasonal crops."  So I don't know about being against the rules, but "seasonal" to me doesn't mean apples in May...

That's what the vendors "showcase." But to stay in business, they may have to sell their own products out of season. If we were to only buy seasonal produce during December, January and February, here in NY, we wouldn't be buying very much.

And what about the vendors who grow under greenhouses - certainly not seasonal, but quite available during the winter and early spring months.


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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As I've stated, the "propping up the vendor's business" doesn't fly for me for selling 8 month-old fruit. We might as well let them sell lottery tickets and grapes from Chile to increase their profits.

I guess I'm spoiled by my encounters with the markets all over the towns in Europe. There the vendors' wares are usually sold less than a week from picking time. That is, to me, what a Greenmarket should be.

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I guess I'm spoiled by my encounters with the markets all over the towns in Europe.  There the vendors' wares are usually sold less than a week from picking time.  That is, to me, what a Greenmarket should be.

I understand - but many of the street markets in Rome and Paris also sell fruits and vegetables from very far away - perhaps less so in the smaller towns and cities.


Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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Tasty Travails - My Blog

My eGullet FoodBog - A Tale of Two Boroughs

Was it you baby...or just a Brilliant Disguise?

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Put the local strawberries on the menu today, picked up a few flats from Yuno's. They are pretty good already. Otherwise it still looks like a bunch of apples and onions. Parsnips looked good though...

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Menton1 -- those apples most likely *were* grown by the seller and then stored in cold storage (apples store very well, and certain varieties better than others) by the seller over the winter. I don't see why this is "too bad" at all!

Somehow, "storage apples" sold at a Farmer's Market just doesn't cut it for me. I want homegrown, as-close-to-picked as possible. Isn't that the theory of a Farmers Market?

Agreed. This apple business has always rubbed me the wrong way. Someone (a farmer) once told me that the apples are sometimes THREE YEARS OLD. I can't pass by them without thinking about that.

Union Square Market is, I think, NYC's biggest and best farmer's market. For that reason, its praises are sung over and over and over. It's a good thing to be skeptical of what the press tells us.


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OK, the apples are kept in storage over the winter. Big deal. Those tomatoes you buy in December? The ones from Chile? The ones that are picked green and gassed and put in storage containers and shipped here? You like those better?

Farmers markets in New York let you buy that which is in season. They let you have a connection with what's happening in the world, that all too few of us have. Why eat asparagus in December when it tastes like crap, or tomatoes in April when they're hard and tasteless. Eat them in spring or late summer, when they're at their peak.

Also, buying at the farmers market means buying local, means less carbon emission to transport the food here, means a cleaner and healthier environment. There's nothing like buying bacon from the guy who raised, slaughtered, butchered, and smoked the pig. You know what it ate, and whyit tastes better than the stuff you'd buy at the Met.

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Put the local strawberries on the menu today, picked up a few flats from Yuno's. They are pretty good already. Otherwise it still looks like a bunch of apples and onions. Parsnips looked good though...

No rhubarb to go with the strawberries?


"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

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Menton1 -- those apples most likely *were* grown by the seller and then stored in cold storage (apples store very well, and certain varieties better than others) by the seller over the winter. I don't see why this is "too bad" at all!

Somehow, "storage apples" sold at a Farmer's Market just doesn't cut it for me. I want homegrown, as-close-to-picked as possible. Isn't that the theory of a Farmers Market?

Agreed. This apple business has always rubbed me the wrong way. Someone (a farmer) once told me that the apples are sometimes THREE YEARS OLD. I can't pass by them without thinking about that.

Union Square Market is, I think, NYC's biggest and best farmer's market. For that reason, its praises are sung over and over and over. It's a good thing to be skeptical of what the press tells us.

There are numerous "storage" crops. Potatoes, carrots and cabbage to name a few. Stored at the proper temperature, these crops, like apples, are superb after months of storage. The ones I buy all winter long at the USGM are excellent. What locally grown "fresh" produce are you expecting in the Northeast during the winter?

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Put the local strawberries on the menu today, picked up a few flats from Yuno's. They are pretty good already. Otherwise it still looks like a bunch of apples and onions. Parsnips looked good though...

No rhubarb to go with the strawberries?

Nah, it didn't fit in with my menu too well. I had some around for a while, but it was pretty mediocre. I should have just juiced it and kept it around in retrospect. Maybe next year.

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Two questions --

1 -- is the Union Square market open on Wednesday this time of year (specifically will it be open next week on Wednesday)?

2-- any first hand reports of what the farmers are selling?  Asparagus, ramps, fiddleheads etc?

Many thanks in advance!

I was at the market yesterday. The produce is always expensive but usually worth while. What really galled me, was that the guy selling apples on the corner of Park and 17th Street wanted $10.00 a pound for wild asparagus. Imagine, ten bucks a pound!

As for last years produce, in addition to the apples, the potatoes are from last fall and they are sprouting.

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Put the local strawberries on the menu today, picked up a few flats from Yuno's. They are pretty good already. Otherwise it still looks like a bunch of apples and onions. Parsnips looked good though...

No rhubarb to go with the strawberries?

Nah, it didn't fit in with my menu too well. I had some around for a while, but it was pretty mediocre. I should have just juiced it and kept it around in retrospect. Maybe next year.

Was there any to be had, even though you didn't want it? :smile:


"We had dry martinis; great wing-shaped glasses of perfumed fire, tangy as the early morning air." - Elaine Dundy, The Dud Avocado

Queenie Takes Manhattan

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I saw rhubarb at one of the stalls when I walked through late Saturday afternoon.

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I had strawberry tunnel vision.

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