Sunday, October 04, 2009

Rittenhouse Plans Expansion

The Rittenhouse Square Farmers' Market, operated by Farm to City, is busting at its seams. The nearly 20 vendors I counted yesterday pretty much filled the north side of the square between 18th and West Rittenhouse.

To accommodate more stalls, Farm to City founder and director Bob Pierson has obtained the city's permission to expand the market along 18th Street, according to one of the vendors.

Although a couple of the stalls yesterday were promotional in nature (Zipcar, Otolith seafood CSA), most were selling the best of autumn's produce, dairy products and baked goods. Among them:
  • Crawford Organics' (photo) filled their three-slot space with beets, celeriac and small, fresh rutabagas at $2.50/pound and small (and overpriced) romanesco at $3 a head, among other items.
  • Hilltop Produce featured unpasteurized cider, $2/quart, $3/half-gallon, $4/gallon. Fahnestock Orchards' apple selection included Honey Crisps, Stayman Winesaps, McIntoshes, Empires, Jonagolds, Mutsus (a.k.a. Crispin), Cortlands and Fujis; all were $1.50/pound, except the Honey Crisps, $2.
  • Rineer Family Farm (which also shows up at South Street and other farmers' markets) still had raspberries ($3.75/half-pint, two for $7), cherry tomatoes ($2.25/half-pint, two for $4), heirloom tomatoes ($3.50/pound), and field tomatoes ($2.99).
  • Hails Family Farm showed up with a nice selection of dairy products, from milk to cheese spreads. They also stocked their all-natural cream cheese (no gums), which was briefly carried by Fair Food at the Reading Terminal Market; alas, the Wyalusing, Pennsylvania, dairy and produce farm no longer makes deliveries there.
  • Le Baguette Bakery had a nice selection of breads and pastries. I took home a $5 stromboli (made from baguette dough, so it was far better than Stouffer's French Bread Pizza) with pepperoni and mozzarella. Reheated at home for five minutes in a 350-oven, it made for a light, crusty lunch for two.

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