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The best Hudson River Valley Farmer's Markets?

Hello all-

I moved here from Nebraska two years ago, and my expectations of farmer's markets are pretty high (3 city blocks of farmers selling everything from local corn to ostrich was the norm). Anyways, last summer I suffered through the tiny Highland Falls farmer's market, and have tried the Beacon one this year. I'm not very impressed with either of them - only a very small amount of vendors and what seems to be pretty high prices ($6 for a quart of strawberries - is that normal?).

Does anyone have suggestions of other markets up and down the river that might have more choices? I did go the Cold Spring one once, but that also seemed very small.

Also, the websites that list the markets seem either out of date or lacking important information such as the day of the market.

Oh, I live in Newburgh, so anything 15 miles north or south on either side of the river would be worth the drive if there is lots of choice.

Thanks!

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  1. I live in northern Westchester, and have not been overwhelmed by my choices down here (Peekskill and Ossining), but last summer I went to the one in Rhinebeck and thought it was quite extensive. Is that too far? That one was on Sunday.

    1. Can you come to the capital district?? I have heard good things about the troy farmers market and the one in Menands as well. I love the one in Saratoga but that is probably too far....

      1. you will be highly disappointed with the farmer's markets around here. the hudson valley is sorely lacking in good markets, compared to what i had heard of before moving up here years ago,

        the rhinebeck one is the best of the bunch. i sometimes go down to beacon for theirs because popovich provisions goes there (with great homemade mozz) and some of the other goodies, but as you noted, its' very very small.

        rhinebeck has about 40? vendors set up there. they usually have someone playing music, and a couple bread vendors, some meat people, some cheeses, vegetables, fruits and pies, etc.

        millbrook, which was touted as a nice farmers market, had maybe 10? 15? vendors. very small, very poor.

        unfortunately, the best farmers markets i know of are in nyc, union square one of my favorites. unfortunately, i see a bunch of vendors from this area down there (ie. ronnybrook farms) that don't often appear @the local ones.

        i'd suggest going to adams, if only because they get a lot of produce from local farms, and have many local things sold there. the POK store didn't have ramps, but the kingston one would carry them (and you could get them delivered to POK or newburgh if you requested).

        7 Replies
        1. re: bob gaj

          Yes, with the Rhinebeck Market being the so called "Best" in the area, there are still new one opening all the time. Athens & New Baltimore will be opening this weekend & the Catskill Point is only a few miles away I understand. I've never had any positive experiences at any of the Adams locations... Ramps are only in season for a few weeks... How much produce from Calif & South America do we need? They actually had a big display for blackberries from Chilie a few weeks ago... 7000 miles is local? I didn't buy them!

          1. re: bob gaj

            bob gaj, I think popovich provisions is at Rhinebeck farmers market as well, at least it was the case for last year. Hope they're back there again this year!

            There's also one in Hyde Park, which definitely has less vendors and less selections. But I guess for people who come during the weekend to visit the parks, it's another good stroll-around place.

            1. re: moosesocks

              yup, popovich is @rhinebeck on sundays, or has been before; i'm a little closer to rhinebeck so usually go there when i want to pick some up, but occasionally i'll go south if we're picking up mozz while going to a friend's, or if i need to be in that area on a saturday.

              btw, does anyone know where popovich provisions' food is sold? i asked joe a while back, and he mentioned peek's? in pine plains, mcenroe's organic on rte 22/millerton, and some place like silmar. i can't read my old writing...thanks.

              and MORE btw...i just found this site:
              localharvest.org

              which doesn't have the best search engine, but looks pretty good and a response to the O.P.

            2. re: bob gaj

              I happened to be in Cold Spring yesterday and stopped by the farmer's market. There was a sign up that said that Mr. Popovich "The Mozzarella Man" was retiring and there was a big card or something to sign ( maybe for people who have been buying from him for some time). I don't know whether other family members or employees will be carrying on or not...

              It was a very small market and my husband picked up 3 small peaches for $3.60. I think $4.99 a pound. Is that normal up here? I'm used to Florida prices. The peaches tasted like they came from Publix - very nothing special. However, there was a veggie dealer that had very nice variety - some beautiful eggplants and lots of luscious greens. And a stand with more heirloom tomato varieties than I have ever seen. Samples of all - which is a nice way to learn the differences between these beauties.

              I think I'll check out the market in Rhinebeck next time I can.

              1. re: Mothership

                oh, that's awful; i'm guessing the illness kept him from continuing on. i hope he's able to enjoy the time where he's not working; making the mozzarella (and the specialty gourmet items, which i never tried) involves a ton of work and hours.

                thanks for the update...

                1. re: bob gaj

                  FYI - I saw Joe Popovich recently. He is feeling better and is planning to be at the Rhinebeck Market again this year.

                2. re: Mothership

                  Yes, I think Cold Spring's prices are usually higher than other markets - and the clientele is usually willing to pay for it. Another option for peaches would be to go to the farm stand at Caledonna Farms - off 9W in Marlboro - they have white and yellow peaches, white and yellow nectarines, apples, plums, grapes, corn, tomatoes, and most other vegetables for sale every day. It is north of Newburgh, so you would take the Beacon bridge and head north for about 10 minutes - you go through the town of marlboro. Also, the prices seem very fair there.

              2. a stellar farmers market is really hard to find around here in NJ as well. Most local farmers ship their stuff to Union Square in the city before they'll sell it at a local market - (go figure). Warwick's farmers market is worth a 1 hour drive for me and my dude due to its abundance of vendors, though again, is still no comparison to uinion square

                1. I agree that the Rhinebeck farmers market is one of the best. FYI, in addition to Sunday, the market is also open on Thursday in the late afternoon/early evening.

                  One farmers market that had not been mentioned is the one in Kingston. This one is widely considered to be at the same level as the one in Rhinebeck. Don't miss the guy selling potatoes--the carolla potato is considered one of the best for mashed.

                  As for Adams, yes, they sell fruits and vegetables grown in California, Florida...and Chile. It's purely a business decision; they have to keep the produce section stocked. But if you look closely, you'll see lots of local produce in season. Also, they always have local beef that has not been frozen--they buy sides and then butcher it themselves. The meat sold at farmer markets are usually frozen. (They don't sell enough to sell it fresh.) They also actually grind the beef or hamburgers. Most supermarkets buy coarsely ground meat in plastic tubes and then grind it finer.

                  And don't forget the farm stands. I buy my fruit at "pit" farms and my veggies at farms specializing in vegetable's.

                  As far as local farms selling only at farmers markets in NYC, the volume and prices that they charge are not possible in the Hudson Valley. It's purely a business decision.

                  Ronnybrook was mentioned as a dairy that does not sell here. I know for a fact that Adams sells their milk, cheese and yogurt. Also don't forget that Hudson Valley Fresh and Boice (both local) are sold locally. In fact, Boice milk is sold in, if you can believe it, the the WalMart located in Kingston. FYI, Boice also sells their products under another name in NJ; their ice cream is sold in NYC speciality markets, also under another name (and at double the price).

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: jayjay

                    jay - i haven't been to kingston - is it in the uptown area?

                    RE: ronnybrook - yup, they're @adams, i sometimes get their ice cream and milk, i meant they're not @ the local farmers markets...

                    i love adams, you can also request the meat ground per your request if you'd like. they had some jamon serrano (!) for a little while, but no longer, it unfortunately didn't sell well. it's easy to focus on some of the minor negatives, but until someone tells me who is markedly better, it's sort of pointless to complain.

                    the pit farms - i believe there's one on 9w, before the rhinecliff bridge, that's supposed to be good? but i'm coming up from POK area, so it's a bit out of my way.

                    1. re: bob gaj

                      The Kingston market is uptown Saturday mornings from 9-2 I believe. I can get pretty much all of my food for the week there in about 20 minutes of shopping.

                      Most of the farmers I know do everything then can to get the markets farther down South with Union Square being the main goal. As mentioned above the money is hard for them to pass up.

                  2. There is a new market in Woodstock that is very good. It's on Wednesdays starting at 4pm. They have alot of organic produce and a nice area with picnic tables where you can sit an listen to music.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: dixiecup

                      I finally found a pretty good market - almost in my backyard. I highly recommend the Newburgh Farmer's Market - it is on Friday's until 5 pm in Downing Park. I found a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, a stand selling honey and honey products, and a stand selling italian breads, meats, and mozzarella. There were so many different varieties of veggie across 8 different stands.

                      I highly recommend it for anyone that can get there on Fridays - the people are nice, the location is pretty nice, and the prices are pretty cheap. If only they had locally raised meats, it would be perfect.