To Market, To Market

Spring is in the air in the Sacramento region, bringing beautiful weather, blooming plants and a thriving farmers market scene. While area shoppers can likely find a local market open for business 365 days a year, rain or shine, the spring season signals the return of many popular spots that open in May.

The Sacramento area is home to more than 40 farmers markets – including the largest California Certified Farmers’ Market in the state – where shoppers can find seasonal produce, meats, breads, cheeses and countless other products.  While many farmers and ranchers travel from the Bay Area and beyond to share their goods, the Sacramento region’s markets also serve as prime locations to pick up favorite items made or grown right in our own backyard. Some markets also double as entertainment venues, featuring live music, food trucks, family activities, dog parks and more.

Local chefs can often be spotted picking up items for their evening menus, ensuring that diners are enjoying the freshest seasonal ingredients. One popular program will even allow shoppers to shadow a local chef while visiting the market, and to taste the fruits of their labor. Grange Restaurant’s “Follow the Chef” invites participants to travel to downtown Sacramento’s Cesar Chavez Farmers Market to talk about seasonal products with Chef Oliver Ridgeway. The tour ends with a Grange lunch made from the same ingredients. Tours begin over the next few weeks and are led each Wednesday from 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. For reservations and event dates, call 916-492-4450.

To find a farmers market near you, click here or here (Map sources: The Sacramento Bee and Sacramento County Agricultural Commissioner’s Office). Now let’s get shopping!