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May 10, 2010 12:55 AM

Any good strawberries yet this year?

I fondly remember the big gorgeous strawberries I used to get at my favorite farmers market (no longer in existence).

Stopped by the new tiny farmers market in Marinwood Sat. and saw two vendors selling strawberries. The berries didn't look very promising but I bought a box anyway ($3.50).

Had some for breakfast, and they didn't taste any better than they looked. Small, seedy, and none too sweet.

So -- is it a weather thing? Too early in the season? Are there great berries at other markets this year?

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  1. Temescal Farmers Market 5/9/10
    Organic Lucero with stems, $3.50/pint

    2 Replies
    1. re: oaktowngirl

      I dunno - maybe it's just me, but I haven't been very impressed by Lucero's berries, pretty as they are. Especially when comparison-tasted alongside some other offerings at the farmers' markets, I've found them gritty and lacking in strawberry-ness. The Saturday Berkeley farmers' market did a free strawberry tasting a year or two ago (pretty sure they do it every year), and it was eye-opening to me how much better many of the other berries were, compared with the ones that got all the popular attention (Lucero, even Swanton was just OK) - Catalan had one of the best-tasting ones then, and I still prefer them to Lucero.

      1. re: Spatlese

        Who has the best berries varies from year to year & sometimes week to week within the season. I do remember there was one year that Catalan pretty much kicked ass all summer long. But Lucero & Swanton are always in my taste tests, & both of them win frequently. I agree recently Lucero has had the best-looking berries but the flavor hasn't quite come in yet. Overall it has been a late season. I'm sure we will have great strawberries from all 3 farms very soon.

    2. They are just starting to show up now. I saw some at a couple of farmers markets this week. Those market strawberries looked oversized and a little fake so I skipped them. But I picked some this weekend in Sonoma County that were amazing.

      1. The farmers Market at the College of San Mateo had several vendors selling really good looking strawberries. Overall it is a pretty good market too.

        College of San Mateo
        1700 W Hillsdale Blvd, San Mateo, CA

        1 Reply
        1. re: Cheshire_Cat

          I have tried all the vendors at the CSM market selling strawberries, and IMO the best ones are from Nunez Organic Farms.

        2. Maybe this will be of interest:

          Free strawberry tasting on Saturday May 15
          Berkeley Farmers' Market, Center St. at MLK Jr. Way, Berkeley.

          1. Cold weather. The ones I tasted and bought this week were the best yet for the season but they're well short of peak ripeness. I thought the best at the Berkeley Saturday market were the Swanton second crop (smaller berries).