HOME > Chowhound > Greater Boston Area >
What's your latest food quest? Share your adventure
TELL US

Farmers' Markets, Farm Stands, CSAs etc. Early July

BostonZest Jun 30, 2010 08:23 PM

The strawberries are coming to an end. The blueberries are on a lot of stands and I can't wait for the corn, big heirloom tomatoes and Saturn peaches.

Are you shopping the farmers' markets for the July 4th Weekend?

Penny
http://www.bostonzest.com/

  1. BostonZest Jul 1, 2010 09:48 AM

    Just bought corn at the Prudential Market. Both MacArthur Farm and Springbrook had it.

    Penny
    http://www.bostonzest.com/

    1. s
      sallyt Jul 1, 2010 10:46 AM

      does anyone know if the Harvard Sq market (at the Charles Hotel) will be open on Sunday, the 4th?

      1 Reply
      1. re: sallyt
        BostonZest Jul 1, 2010 02:08 PM

        The Friday market has the same manager so you might be able to get a reply from her if you drop by on Friday.

        Penny
        http://www.bostonzest.com/

      2. h
        heypielady Jul 1, 2010 12:39 PM

        I just went to Belmont and I have to admit we are in a little bit of a lull. The strawberries are over, the cherries are over. And the raspberries just look so lonely out there. Less greens than usual. Some of the harder stuff making an appearance like summer squash and zucchini. I picked up some Carlisle Honey to make another batch of granola . Also bought some caramel yum... I mean rum sauce.

        Can't wait for some peaches!

        1. BostonZest Jul 7, 2010 01:40 PM

          There are more markets opening in the next couple of weeks. I just compiled this list for my newspaper column.

          Charlestown - Thompson Square at Austin & Main Streets, Wednesdays 2:00pm to 7:00pm, 07/21 to 10/27
          East Boston - Central Square at Meridian, Bennington and Border Street, Thursdays, 3:00pm to 7:00pm, 07/15 to 10/14
          Chelsea - Chelsea Square in front of the Police Station, Saturdays -9:00am to 1:00pm, 07/24 to 10/30
          Revere - Revere Beach at William G Reinstein Bandstand-Thursdays, Noon to 6:00 pm, July 22 to October 23
          Everett - Everett Square, saturdays, 10:30am to 2:00pm, 07/17 to 10/09
          Lynn - Exchange and Washington Streets, Central Square, Thursdays, 11:00am to 3:00pm, 07/02 to 10/29

          Penny
          http://www.bostonzest.com/

          -----
          Main Street Cafe
          85 Main St, Woonsocket, RI 02895

          4 Replies
          1. re: BostonZest
            Gio Jul 8, 2010 10:16 AM

            Thanks for the list, Penny! I've been dying to get to the Revere market. I read they have seafood. Has anyone been there?

            1. re: Gio
              g
              gimlis1mum Jul 8, 2010 03:41 PM

              Haven't been to Revere, but they have seafood at Winchester. We've tried the trout, crabmeat, and haddock.

              1. re: gimlis1mum
                Gio Jul 9, 2010 07:11 AM

                Thank you for the information about Winchester FM. I went to their web site and Love the vendors listed. We pickup at Connors on Sat. AM so have to try to fit Winchester into the loop.

            2. re: BostonZest
              LindaWhit Jul 9, 2010 10:34 AM

              Wakefield is supposed to open tomorrow, I believe. Yup, here's their website:

              http://www.wakefieldfarmersmarket.com/

              I hope to get there first thing before an appt. in Melrose.

            3. GretchenS Jul 7, 2010 01:58 PM

              Peaches and red and white currants at Arlington Farmers' Market today, and corn from western MA. The egg lady has moved down to the bottom, I panicked at first when she wasn't in her usual spot.

              1. y
                y2000k Jul 7, 2010 02:03 PM

                There were lots of veggies at the Waltham Farmers market last Sat (July 3). Bought some bok choy; plenty of other greens including broccoli & cauliflower. No more strawberries, but plenty of raspberries, blackberries and blueberries. Also cherry tomatoes and peaches.

                1. r
                  rozziegirl Jul 8, 2010 06:21 AM

                  Nice pickup at Allandale yesterday: spring onions, sugar snaps, romanesco, kale, basil, beets, carrots, fennel, huge romaine, cabbage.

                  1. j
                    joth68 Jul 8, 2010 08:06 AM

                    Parker Farms pickup: beets, new potatoes, fava beans, cousa squash, kale, cabbage, carrots, cilantro, cauliflower, cucumbers, mizuna

                    1. k
                      kate used to be 50 Jul 8, 2010 10:11 AM

                      The Wakefield Farmers Market is scheduled to open this weekend (finally!).

                      1. Gio Jul 8, 2010 10:21 AM

                        Our pick-up on Saturday 7/10 will be:
                        Beans
                        Cucumbers
                        Lettuce
                        Yellow Squash or Zucchini
                        Daikon
                        Collard Greens
                        Blueberries
                        Corn
                        Raspberries..........U/Pick

                        So far everything from Connors has been terrific. And, each week there are additional items like veggie plants and unexpected vegetables. We're very pleased.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Gio
                          o
                          owen_meany Jul 8, 2010 10:24 AM

                          I second this. The quality has been terrific and the little surprises each week have been a lot of fun! I'm excited to pick raspberries this weekend!

                        2. cassoulady Jul 9, 2010 05:36 AM

                          Red Fire this week was kale, garlic, cukes, zucchini, lettuce, a huge bag of green beans and the highlight was amazing blueberries- I think the best I have tasted.

                          12 Replies
                          1. re: cassoulady
                            p
                            pastrytroll Jul 31, 2010 06:12 PM

                            Haverhill's Fletcher Farm CSA has been a HUGE rip-off, and the organizers should be ashamed of themselves.
                            Our first pick-up was a sandwich baggie of really old peas. The next week we were told we could have a handful of leaf lettuce-and nothing else!. Then - zucchinis as big as a human thigh. And big round yellow things that may have been cucumbers sometime in the past. This week was more compost-sized zucchini, and three tomatoes. I'd give them credit if they were trying in their first year - but this isn't even trying.
                            We basically threw away >$300, plus a couple of days of labor - and donated to fund their farmers market booth. Can you tell we will not be back next year - and I keep wondering if there was a way to get our money back for outright fraud!

                            1. re: pastrytroll
                              LindaWhit Aug 1, 2010 05:05 AM

                              Have you said anything to them about it? It sounds REALLY bad! Or is there a local CSA organization to whom you can complain?

                              1. re: pastrytroll
                                Gio Aug 1, 2010 05:48 AM

                                Oh gosh... I would definitely complain. That's terrible and not what you should have received for your weekly share. Their website states very differently: " Once a week throughout the harvest you will receive a variety of vegetables which can be picked up right at the farm."
                                http://www.localharvest.org/csa/M36505

                                1. re: Gio
                                  greygarious Aug 1, 2010 09:33 AM

                                  Looking at that link, I noticed that there are no reviews thus far. Pastrytroll should vent THERE. Unless the farm has experienced some sort of crop or manpower disaster (which is the risk you take when you join a CSA) there's no excuse for such measly allotments.

                                  1. re: greygarious
                                    Gio Aug 1, 2010 10:02 AM

                                    I agree graygarious. I feel almost embarrased to say that Connors Farm has been beyond our expectation. In fact, we were told that if we fail to receive anything on the posted list for each week's share they will replace any item the next time we come in. And they have. I can't see how one farm could be so abundant and another, not too many miles away, can have failed. Unless they're doing everything wrong.

                                    Here's a link to Fletcher Farm's web site:
                                    http://www.fletchercommunityfarm.com/
                                    Their expected harvet is quite large.

                                    1. re: Gio
                                      p
                                      pastrytroll Aug 1, 2010 11:32 AM

                                      I certainly have complained, and other have too. I don't think Donnie, one of the organizers, knew what a CSA actually was, and no one wants to hurt his feelings, As far as that variety goes... They've got one field, we've seen it, my husband planted the tomatoes, all at once. This has really led me to respect what a CSA does: getting variety, to ripen consistently over the growing season -that takes so much knowledge and work it's amazing.
                                      We were in the first year of another CSA, and while we got a lot of kale and chard - we never doubted the intentions of the farmer or begrudged the gaps while he was learning his microclimates. Will let you know of any response I get from writing, rather than griping at pickup, from Fletcher Farm.

                                    2. re: greygarious
                                      p
                                      pastrytroll Aug 2, 2010 12:44 PM

                                      Thanks Gio and Grey! I just posted a review on Local Harvest.. I've spoken to Fletcher Farm in person -when confronted with a couple tubs of giant zucchinis - got a shrug. Emailed, got no reply - yet.I guess The organizers seemed so sweet, and the emphasis on local community drew me in. Didn't expect much from a first year (found some frozen kale from a first year CSA when cleaning the freezer - ah memories!) So we knew the first year would be uneven, but thought it would work out in the long run.
                                      One Fletcher Farm member showed me the Globe North article on the problem of not finishing one week's produce before the next week's pickup, and said "there's the good news. We don't have that problem!" Large grin!
                                      Done venting - over and out!

                                      1. re: pastrytroll
                                        LindaWhit Aug 2, 2010 01:00 PM

                                        Wow - just plain wow, pastrytroll! I cannot believe they are just so completely disinterested in any customer service whatsoever.

                                        And it's not like they don't HAVE produce. Check out this article in the July 25th Haverhill Gazette: http://www.hgazette.com/local/x103766...

                                        "The Fletcher's Farm produce stand run by Poli Jutras replenished its supply of vegetables several times to keep up with the retail traffic that flowed through the market's stalls along the boulevard.

                                        "We're still new to some of this but we're doing well, and happy with the way it's working out for us," Jutras said."

                                        1. re: LindaWhit
                                          p
                                          pastrytroll Aug 2, 2010 04:23 PM

                                          Thanks for the link.

                                          The members we know grumble that we're just supporting the farm stand - and I think those baseball bat zucchs, are what they can't sell at the farmers market., just sad all around, because it would have been such a good thing for Haverhill. And it's not like Polly doesn't have my cell!

                                          1. re: pastrytroll
                                            Gio Aug 2, 2010 06:08 PM

                                            Well you shouldn't be "just supporting their farm stand." That's not what a CSA share is about. It's giving the farmer money up front so they have the wherewithal to buy and plant the crops they want in good time without having to worry. In return you, the share holder, are reimbursed, if you will, by getting a Fair Share of the harvest. Indeed... that Fair Share can be calculated into a definite monetary value. You are not getting your Fair Share.

                                            1. re: pastrytroll
                                              LindaWhit Aug 2, 2010 07:34 PM

                                              Perhaps showing up at the Farmer's Market this Saturday and talk to her in person about your CSA share might get her attention. And if she doesn't give you any attention *there*, you know their CSA is a sham.

                                        2. re: greygarious
                                          greygarious Aug 2, 2010 08:37 PM

                                          Fletcher Farm is also listed (under farm, not CSA) on the www.massfarmersmarkets.org website. Unlike Local Harvest, MFM does not seem to have a means for reviewing their member farms but you could e-mail them anyway. If you get no satisfaction from Ms. Jutras and Mr. Cox, you should contact your local Better Business Bureau as well, and you might also call Martha Coakley's (Attorney General) office.

                                  2. y
                                    y2000k Jul 24, 2010 02:57 PM

                                    There is an Asian veggies stand at the Waltham farmers market. This week there's pea tendrils, Chinese broccoli, chinese water spinach (ong choy), and your usual bok choy (several types). Everything look so great (compared to the tired-looking ones I usually buy from Russos).

                                    1. greygarious Jul 28, 2010 06:37 PM

                                      I have never committed to a CSA (largely because even a half-share can be too much for one person) but do frequent the FMs and FSs. Today I was at East Street Farm, which is owned by Farmer Dave, where it was CSA day. Most of the produce bins were marked with the amount of the CSA allotment but no prices, which was a tad perplexing. The corn growing a stone's throw away is not yet ready, so what I got was from Hadley MA, and pretty good. The guy at the register hadn't a clue what the eggplant cost and asked what I wanted to pay, so I quoted Market Basket's sale price and got a lovely big one - will test the claim that early-season eggplants are less seedy and less bitter. This made me feel better when I next went to MB and saw blueberries and corn for half of what I'd just paid at ESF. Tempted by Shaw Farm ice cream, which is excellent, but knew it would be soup by the time I finished errands, even in the styrofoam cooler I keep in the car.

                                      The Lowell FM is my favorite since there is unusual produce there, but I have not yet been (by the time I get there on HOT days, too wilty) and now the fridge is full.

                                      3 Replies
                                      1. re: greygarious
                                        l
                                        lexpatti Sep 17, 2010 11:20 AM

                                        I was sooo excited to finally check out Lowell's FM today, I was in town and swung by but it doesn't start until 2 and a couple farms were setting up. Rude Rude Rude, one other girl was checking it out and asked "could we purchase" and the woman yelled "we aren't open yet, not til 2, YOU CAN'T TELL!!!" I will NEVER buy from them!!!! Maybe she was having a bad day but I'm sorry, customer service or lack of is my guide.

                                        1. re: lexpatti
                                          greygarious Sep 17, 2010 12:05 PM

                                          Apparently, at least in some towns, there are extremely strict rules. I was early for the Chelmsford FM last year and even though everyone was set up and ready to go, the vendors explained that they'd lose their permit if anything was sold before the official starting time. I was able to pick out some fruit at one vendor, and bagels at another, but could not pay for them until the starting bell was rung. Since most of the vendors at the Lowell FM are not native English speakers, and some are undoubtedly not U.S. citizens, I can absolutely understand what happened. The vendor was probably afraid of losing her livelihood if she jumped the gun, but lacked the language proficiency to explain the situation. I have often found that immigrants with limited English can seem gruff, which they probably aren't. And there are also cultural differences. In some societies selling and buying are friendly transactions and in others, there's more of a sense of combat. I doubt that there was intentional rudeness in this case and hope you will try the FM again.

                                          1. re: greygarious
                                            l
                                            lexpatti Sep 18, 2010 06:23 AM

                                            nope, just the opposite. The vendor (Farm) was american/white/english speaking and that customer was a young asian woman who happen to ask the question about purchasing before me. I really wish I had said something about how very rude that vendor was to the vendor. I will never buy from that farm - Spring Brook Farm in Littleton!!
                                            http://springbrookfarmcountry.com/

                                            I can't tell you how rude and her tone was with this customer and wonder if I asked (white) would she have been as hostile? She just needs to be in the fields with her produce, not in front of humans - squash and potatoes are ok with insults!

                                      2. s
                                        smtucker Jul 28, 2010 06:48 PM

                                        I went to the Davis Square market for this first time this season. I don't know the name of the Hmong farm that has a stand, but their produce was outstanding today. I bought a bunch of their greens, and only wish that my dinner plans could incorporate the squash blossoms. These were among the most vibrant blossoms I have seen this season. Already planning next Wednesday's supper to include them.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: smtucker
                                          yumyum Jul 29, 2010 01:01 PM

                                          The Hmong gardeners are my favorites too. Sometimes it's the Yangs at Union and Davis Square, but usually it's another cooperative -- Flats Mentor Farm.

                                          By the way, keep your eyes open for Naragansett Creamery's products. Went to the VT cheesemakers festival last weekend and their ricotta is the best I've ever EVER had. Great fresh mozzarella and smoked mozz too. They do Copley and Davis for sure. YAY!!!

                                        2. h
                                          heypielady Jul 29, 2010 12:31 PM

                                          Belmont Farmer's Market is looking great today. I picked up some blueberries and peaches from Nicewicz farm (ate one already- delicious), sour cherries and blackberries from Kimball. There were so many lovely things available this week but sadly I am without a kitchen so I had to pass on them....the squash blossoms were gorgeous.

                                          1. d
                                            drewinmrblhd Jul 29, 2010 12:57 PM

                                            The Salem market is tonight, Iggy's bread is coming, YUM! 3-7pm, live music, awesome event.

                                            1. s
                                              smtucker Jul 31, 2010 08:03 AM

                                              Wilson Farms home-grown orange and regular honeydew melons are in, and they are just fabulous! Three of us polished off two of them for dinner last night.

                                              -----
                                              Wilson Farm
                                              10 Pleasant St, Lexington, MA 02421

                                              1. greygarious Jul 31, 2010 03:49 PM

                                                Stopped by the Carlisle FM today, for local honey. I wasn't in the market for produce, the fridge being full, and a good thing, because the farmers were outnumbered two-fold by the vendors of crafts, baked goods, and other sweets. The corn picked that day would have tempted me but I was doing errands that would have meant leaving the corn in the car for 7 hours before getting it home. I'll go again, because this FM seems to have a changing group of vendors, and I'm hoping whoever had the great quiche a couple of years ago will resurface.

                                                1. cassoulady Aug 2, 2010 07:53 AM

                                                  Red Fire last week had some of the best peaches I have ever had. They also had great melons, corn and green beans, tons of zuchini and summer squash, tomatoes, onions, garlic and lovely kale. I attached a photo of some kale crostini with goat cheese that I popped under the salamander.

                                                   
                                                  Show Hidden Posts