Enjoy Jersey fresh produce from Montclair’s Farmer’s Market.
A casual morning stroll to the Walnut Street train station will lead you to one of the best farmer’s markets in Essex County. On Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Montclair Farmer’s Market boasts an impressive and well-rounded array of vendors. You will find stands packed with fresh fruits and vegetables from at least five local farms in New Jersey.
Along with their beautiful displays of fresh produce, some vendors also offer farm raised free-range chicken, pork, Black Angus beef, a variety of wines, artisanal cheeses and meats, homemade savory pies and sweet deserts. Locally sourced honeys, jams and fruit preserves also make appearances.
Community owned and operated, Montclair Bread Company has a very strong presence at this market. Passing their irresistibly fresh pastries, doughnuts, coffees and croissants are sure to make your mouth water. Who can pass up a nice cup of coffee and a fresh croissant? Surely, not I! There is even a stand that offers up samples of their homemade pickles. From spicy to sweet, you get to try as you buy.
Vendors that specialize in the making of burgers, sausages and everyone’s favorite, bacon, are also on hand, showing off their almost extinct knack for transforming seasoned meat into delicious artisanal goodness. Too hungry to wait for your home-cooked meal? Just a few yards away you’ll spot a food truck where you can grab a quick delicious bite to hold you over until dinner is done.
A clear indication of the times we are living in, and perhaps what I found most impressive of all, is the fact that some vendors accept WIC and Senior FMNP vouchers. It is such a welcome alternative in a world where quality food is becoming so expensive for the average working class community.
The word “artisanal” denotes a specialized skill acquired over time, where something – usually food – is made by hand and in small batches. It is clear to see the level of pride that every single one of these vendors has in their products. In this day of mass-produced, GMO-laden foods, farmer’s markets have become the go-to of the educated food consumer. Purchases at these markets will surely help support our local farms and surrounding communities. May we keep them alive by visiting and doing what we can to purchase locally.
For more information, contact Montclair Farmers’ Market Steering Committee Chair Steve Schuckman at 973-228-2466, or the Township’s Sustainability Officer Gray Russell at 973-509-5721.