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Farmer's Markets - for a tourist....

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Hello All,

I am visiting Chicago this upcoming weekend (Thursday to Monday morning) from Toronto, Canada. I have been doing some research including reading up here on Chow and trying to figure out what to see and do. Food wise, I think I will be sticking to "cheap eats" and casual spots this time but I would also like to check out one of your markets to absorb the atmosphere and maybe buy lunch there. I won't be buying produce/meat/etc as I have no where to cook it while in Chicago but I enjoy seeing markets while traveling. So, I found this link with a huge listing of different farmers markets in Chicago:


Thinking of checking out the GreenCity market on the Saturday. I tried searching around here but I can't seem to find a definitive answer if this the most prominent/ visit worthy of the bunch of if I should check out another of the markets.

Also looking for any other "non-restaurant" food related spots.. Like tours, educational spots, etc.

EDIT: I also read about this ice cream vendor at the market, (Snookelfritz) is she around still? Looking to try some unique ice cream in Chicago too:


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  1. There are plenty of other farmers markets, but Green City Market is IT -- unless you go up to Evanston which is also on Saturday morning.

    Snookelfritz is still at GCM. Good food to eat at GCM including breads, quiches, crepes, turnovers, doughnuts, etc.

    Green City Market
    1750 N Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60614

    1. If you are going on Saturday, the major market in the city is the Green City Market in Lincoln Park (1750 N Clark). This is different from the other listing for Lincoln Park (which isn't too far away). Also nearby is Division Street.

      Green City Market
      1750 N Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60614

      1. >> Looking to try some unique ice cream in Chicago too

        The Chicago Tribune just did a couple of articles on that:

        The rebirth of the cool - www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/...

        5 new Chicago ice cream makers worth seeking out - www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/...

        3 Replies
        1. re: nsxtasy

          Thanks, just saw a link back to those from the Greencity website.... Looks really interesting on paper at least. I have been making my own ice cream for myself / family and friends for the last 2 years and done some unique flavours but it will be nice to try some of these without having to make a whole batch (which sits very temptingly in my freezor!).

          Thanks for the responses re: the market too

          I could spend my whole trip just eating, but I realize my stomach won't be able to eat everything I want to so I will have to see what locations work with what areas of other things I want to see in Chicago...

          1. re: ylsf

            Given that your post mentions combining your food-related tourism with other non-food tourism, you should consider the Oak Park Farmers Market on Saturday morning, in combination with a visit to the Frank Lloyd Wright sites in OP. As noted in the Chicago Reader article linked to your post, the OP Farmer's market features home made doughnuts and a bluegrass band. It may not be as elaborate as the Farmer's market at Green City Market, but it is a fun, foodworthy excursion, and only about 5 blocks from FLW's Unity Temple and 10 blocks from the FLW Home & Studio.

          2. re: nsxtasy

            >> >> Looking to try some unique ice cream in Chicago too

            >> The Chicago Tribune just did a couple of articles on that:

            They just published yet another article on that today:

            Weird yet wonderful ice cream flavors - www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/...

          3. I lived in Toronto at the end of the 1960's and beginning of the 70s and recall when Kensington wasn't as trendy and was truly a market neighborhood, and have, also, fond memories of St. Lawrence Market. I spent US Memorial Day in Toronto this year, and walked both markets and thought to myself, "The 'market scene' in Chicago is embarassingly bad ... in comparison to Toronto, and many other places. For a world-class city, it's shamefull we don't have something better, more permanent and year-round." Enjoy your visit!

            1. Chicago is a great place for markets, with our many farmers markets all over the city and suburbs, as well as our supermarkets which specialize in produce from all over the world. You'll find it similar to Toronto, where I lived for a while and visited just a few months ago. (On this visit I was trying pastry shops all over your city, and my favorite was La Cigogne, which I loved! I posted about what I found in your forum on Chowhound.)

              You should also check out the new permanent year-round indoor French Market in one of our commuter train stations downtown. It has several dozen booths, including not only produce, meats and cheeses, but also booths from some of our finest food purveyors. I particularly recommend Pastoral, for cheeses and sandwiches; Vanille Patisserie, for their entremets (individual mousse cakes) and croissants; Delightful Pastries for their rainbow cookies; and Canady le Chocolatier for their artisanal chocolates. www.frenchmarketchicago.com

              If you're a fan of pastries, you'll find some of our best at Fox & Obel (downtown), Vanille (on Clybourn as well as in the French Market), and Floriole (four blocks east of Vanille's Clybourn location).

              1. If you're staying anywhere downtown the Division Street farmers' market Saturday mornings 7-1 is easy to get to. From Magnificent Mile area hotels just walk up Michigan to Division and turn left. From State Street area hotels take Red Line subway to Clark & Division. Market is along Division from Clark to State.

                If you enjoy food markets you might like Devon Avenue, an Indian/Pakistani neighborhood with wonderful supermarkets. Take Red Line direction Howard, get off at Loyola, and take 156 Devon bus from Loyola station---ask driver to call Western Avenue, then stroll west from Western along Devon (locally pronounced da-VON). Variously, a neighborhood of Asian markets lies along Argyle between N Sheridan and Broadway and spills southward along Broadway. Take Red Line to Argyle or 36 Broadway or 151 Sheridan bus to Argyle.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Querencia

                  >> get off at Loyola, and take 156 Devon bus from Loyola station

                  Quick note - The CTA bus along Devon is the #155, not #156. At the Loyola el stop, catch it going southbound (i.e. on the west side of the street).

                2. Maxwell St. is a good suggestion for Sunday. It'll be the closest thing to the Kensington Market neighborhood you'll find in Chicago. If you like Mexican food, you'll really enjoy it.

                  You have food stores in Toronto, so a visit to the produce department at one of the Chicago Supers would probably be a waste of time - it's not something most people would think of as a 'farmer's market.'

                  I find that many fo the farmers markets in Chicago have more local, commerical sellers of things than actual "farmers" or direct from the farm produce. You can often get better and less expensive produce at a fruit/vegetable store (and even supermarkets) in the city than at these once or twice-weekly markets.


                  1 Reply
                  1. re: gomexico

                    THanks to everyone who has posted. I am realizing there is too much I want to see, so, I am going to stop researching now and just pack and enjoy my trip... I will post back early next week with my "results"... The Maxwell Street market looks intriguing. Going to check out the GreenCity market and some of the ice cream vendors. Will probably make it to French Market and Fox and Obel too... and if I have time get out to some of the ethnic neighbourhoods (loved the Jackson Heights area in Queens/NY for example...)...

                    French Market Cafe
                    1973 W 111th St, Chicago, IL 60643