Written by Heather Peter
Anew season is upon us, and with that, comes another exciting time for foodies everywhere… farmer’s market season! Fresh, bountiful local produce alongside artisan food makers abound in these markets. Though there are many, here are some of our favourites:
Hamilton Farmer’s Market
35 York Boulevard, Hamilton
(Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 8am – 6pm, Saturday 7am – 5pm)
If you’re travelling downtown, it’s hard to miss the standout architecture of the Hamilton Farmer’s Market. Next door to the Hamilton Central Library on York Blvd near James Street, the market has been serving the community since 1837. This market isn’t the pop-up version you may be used to, as their vendors stick around year round, and open up shop four days each week. On top of their produce, meat vendors – such as Jepson’s Fresh Meats – cheese vendors and more, they also have tasty vendors like made-to-order pasta at Vinnie’s Fresh Pasta Factory, Henry Brown’s Ice Cream, Relay Coffee, English baked goods, and gluten-free delights at Marci’s. Their food court has grown in popularity recently – complete with everything from real Mexican food at Mexican Kitchen, to the Slurp Ramen, Poke bowls at Pokeh, and more. So whether you’re looking for something to enjoy right in the moment, or to cook up and eat later on… there are many local growers and makers to support right in the heart of the city.
Waterdown Farmer’s Market
Royal Canadian Legion, 79 Hamilton Street North, Waterdown
May 26 – October 20, Saturdays, 8am – 1pm
Waterdown offers a fabulous weekly market with a terrific assortment of vendors. With the help of the Waterdown BIA, the market relaunched four years ago and 2018 marks the fifth season. Not only are there lots of vendors with fresh produce and baked goods attending the market each Saturday, there’s also a different children’s craft or activity each week in the Market Kids’ Corner. Watch the website for vendor additions and information.
Ottawa Street Market
204 Ottawa Street North, Hamilton
(Saturdays, 8am – 2pm)
Quite possibly the largest pop-up market found in the city of Hamilton, the Ottawa Street Market spans two parking lots with amazing local vendor booths. Located just behind the shops on Ottawa Street North, just to the East, this market takes place year-round on Saturday morning into early afternoon. Vendors change based on the season with makers such as Teal’s Meats, Fletcher Fruit Farms and many more becoming customer favourites. With the new Murray’s Meat Shop on Ottawa, along with the East Hamilton Cheese Company and the seafood bar at Hammerhead’s, Ottawa is a one-stop shop for all your weekly groceries.
Ancaster Farmer’s Market
37 Halson Street, Ancaster
Open: June 13th
(Wednesdays, 3 – 7pm, June 13 to October 17, 2018)
In a grassy area behind the historic St John’s Anglican church in the old Ancaster Village, sits the Ancaster Farmer’s Market. Run on Wednesday afternoons from June to October, the little market packs a big punch! Hosting local farmers with their fruit and vegetables (Cranston’s, Brantwood Farms and more), meats (Fenwood Farms), cheeses, wineries (Flat Rock Cellars), food makers like Foundry Ice Cream, Earth to Table Bread or Cathy’s Kombucha, plus local food trucks… a visit to the Ancaster Farmer’s Market makes the perfect day-trip for families or for a quick meal for after work. Add a little live music from local musicians in the centre of the market, and you’re set!
Locke Street Farmer’s Market
260 Locke Street South, Hamilton
Open: May 26, 2018
(Saturdays, 9am – 1pm)
Located on the southern-most end of Locke Street South, the Locke Street Farmer’s Market is another one of the smaller markets in the city, but one that you won’t want to miss. Taking place on Saturdays from 9am to 1pm – you’ll find the vendors in the parking lot of Locke Street Tire and Automotive. Launched in 2010, the Locke Street Farmer’s Market has made a name for itself, receiving lots of customers each Saturday that they are open. From fresh produce to flowers from La Primavera Farms to wine – this market has it all! Make a day of it and head to one of the many restaurants for breakfast, brunch, or lunch!
165 Charlton Avenue West, Hamilton
Open: as of May 30
(Wednesdays, 3 – 7pm)
One of the most recent additions to the Hamilton farmer’s market scene is the Durand Market – located on Charlton in the gardens of the Central Presbyterian Church (just across from Durand coffee). Launched in June of 2017, the Durand Market specializes in fresh produce and food from local urban farmers and producers. On top of the fresh produce, they also host vendors who sell wares like fresh flowers, baked goods, handmade cutting boards, pickled items and more! Visit them every Wednesday from 3pm to 7pm at the corner of Caroline and Charlton.
Dundas Farmer’s Market
11 Miller’s Lane, Dundas
Open: June 7 to October 25, 2018
(Thursdays, 3 – 7pm)
The Dundas community has had a relationship with farm markets since as far back as 1970, and since the resurgence of the Millers Lane farm market in 2009, the Dundas Farmer’s Market has grown in popularity. Hosting vendors not only with organic locally grown fruits, vegetables and meats, but also local makers like bakeries, pre-made items like 50 Pesos Latin foods, honey, wineries, cheese, eggs, and even something for your furry friend like BlueBoy Organic Dog Treats! Also, if it’s a hot day, the delicious Rudy’s is often onsite with their famous frozen fruit paletas (a style of popsicle).