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Apr 14, 2007 02:36 PM

Farmers Market in ST. Louis.

Am planning on a trip to St Louis this summer,I've gotten great recommendations from my fellow chowhounds but I forgot to ask about the farmers market that is there,so please give me some feedback.

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  1. Well, there are about 17 of them.

    the best place to go for questions like this on is LocalHarvest.org.

    Here's what a search there revealed:


    8 Replies
    1. re: Devotay

      I had the visitors guide to ST. Louis but can't find it now, all I remember that they sell meat and seafood besides produce,I'm not going to be able to vist all 17 of them,only a few,so please give me your recommendations.

      1. re: mutti

        Would it be Sappington Farmers Market on Watson?

        1. re: marymac

          found the magazine,and It's Soulard Farmers Market.
          Is it worth it to go to or is there a better one??????????

          1. re: mutti

            Soulard is a fun place to go. I think you'd enjoy it.

            1. re: marymac

              We went to the Soulard Farmers Market last weekend. It was great, but extremely cold! Lots of produce, shipped in of course, but wonderful prices. We especially enjoyed the food stalls. Yakitori, mini donuts, beignets, muffelettas, soul food, too much to try!

            2. re: mutti

              Yes, Soulard's cool and they claim to have been there sine 1776!

              On a side note, don't miss Schlafley Brewery too!

            3. re: marymac

              It has been ten years since I have been at Sappington Market. The last time that I was there Sappington was a surplus market selling products that were on the edge of their expiration date. It was a great place to pick up real bargeins but not a place that sold high quality product.

              1. re: jlawrence01

                Thank you all for all the good replies, will definitly be going to the market.
                Last November I went to Kansas city Mo,I was given such good advice on places to go to,I would never have known about it if it wasn't for you chowhounds,your advice is invaluable.Thanks again.

        2. We are starting to have so many 'farmer's markets' in the St. Louis area that there aren't enough farmers to go around...but here are a few of my rec's...you will note that I am a south-city gal, and my geography influences my habits.

          Soulard Market is the granddaddy of them all. Soulard has been continuously operating since, oh, dinosaurs roamed the earth. (My mom used to work one of the stalls back in, um, 1976, so I have a special affection for the place).On Saturday mornings, it can get very crowded and it is my absolute favorite place to people-watch and listen to all the languages being spoken. A great many of the stalls are 'produce vendors' who buy from the early-morning produce-row trucks, but you will also find more 'slowfood' options, organic farmers, the mushroom guy (who sells foraged mushrooms) the heirloom tomato stall, etc...you can spot the farmers...they usually have a banner over their stall that says 'Fill-in-the-blank Family Farms'...and they don't have bananas! Soulard is the real deal, not a tourist attraction, and attemps to 'gentrify' it have most often failed, for which I am grateful. You will find plenty of people toting bundles of exotic flowers and fingerling potatoes, but you will also find lots of people looking for the cheapest cabbage, bananas, and spuds. I strongly recommend the strawberries from the Scharf farm stall, the granola from the Black Bear Bakery stall, bacon from the guy in the NorthEast wing who has all the chickens & ducks in cages at his stall, and most anything from the girl in the NorthWest wing with all the coolers of fish and smoked meats. Soulard is big, you can easily spend a morning there, and there are plenty of eating/drinking options. If you're here in summer, don't miss out on tomatoes...there's a guy who sells all kinds of varieties, I don't know where in the market his stall will be this summer, but the big yellow/red stripey tomatoes (German stripe?) are awesome.

          I also love Tower Grove Farmer's Market. Right now, its being held in a church near Tower Grove Park, but in summer it is behind the big pavilion which sits behind the wading pool in the park...very 'green', lots of organic, lots of local, and a very nice atmosphere. There are local meat producers...really good lamb, in particular...Tower Grove is more 'upmarket' than Soulard, a great place to pick up a grass-fed steak and some seasonal stuff, and then buy a cup of coffee and sit on a wall & watch little kids splash around in the pool.

          I've tried the Clayton farmer's market, but I'll admit that it's a little foo-foo for me. I like organic, I like small-producer, but I also like to be able to pay my mortgage and buy food, as well. Its a beautifully conceptualized market, but a little upscale for downscale me.

          The Schlafly market is variable, since it relies so heavily on local growers, you should do fine in summer, they are a Wednesday-afternoon market, though...so they don't compete with the others I mentioned. And then, of course, you can cross the parking lot and have a beer and a goat-cheese with multigrain crackers appetizer at the Schlafly Bottleworks.

          Sappington Farmer's Market is a grocery store...not so much a 'farmer's market', but worth checking out for their cheese department...they have some really good prices on things like Double Gloucester, Havarti with dill, Port Salut, and feta, not a huge selection, but some surprising choices, and as I said, tremendously good prices on the cheese. Their produce is variable...often good prices, but the quality can vary a lot.

          3 Replies
          1. re: tonifi

            GREAT descriptions of the St. Louis farmers markets, Tonifi. I'll add information about Clayton the Clayton Market, which "almost" didn't happen happen this year but has a new sponsor (Straub's), new location (west of the Straub's store in Clayton) and a new market master with lots of great ideas. I definitely would give it another chance this year (though admit my reaction in prior years is similar to yours).

            Another to add to the list is the Kirkwood Farmers Market which is worth visiting on Saturday mornings.

            But if you're coming from out of town, the "only" market to visit is Soulard, which is quite a spectacle. And although it's open during the week, the "only" time to really visit is Saturdays, when the produce dealers are joined by local farmers. If your expectation is the Ferry Market, however, Soulard isn't in the same league.

            1. re: LadyKaldi

              Does anyone know when the Clayton Market is set to start up? Or for that matter, how it will be different from the old one?

              1. re: shannoninstlouis

                Sure! I'm the new Market Master. We're due to open on Saturday the 19th of May. We've changed our opening hours a bit, and are now 8.30 -12.30 and we'll be located on the Straub's West parking lot. We're going to be setting up a lot more stuff going on, lots of sampling and demonstrations as well as the farmers. We're also inviting local craftsmen who do food and drink related pieces as well as some bakers and maybe even a pie specialist. I'm hoping to get some musical entertainment in as well. Input would be much appreciated! SBVickers (a) gmail.com (replace (a) with @)