At The Market
Where to Go and What to Get Around the Upstate
Farmers markets might be the whole edible Upcountry mission in a nutshell, the essence of a food community. Where else can you take your kids to pick their peppers, catch up with the neighbors, as well as talk logistics of hydroponics, organic insect control, and bring home a bouquet of flowers in the process? Literally, it’s ground-level knowledge building, engaging all the senses. So we’re especially excited this season to celebrate two brand new markets open on Thursday afternoons heading towards evening, where you might catch a little live music, grab a bite to eat from a food truck, AND fill your basket, all on a day when it once might have been a little tougher to get your locally-grown fix.
TAYLORS FARMERS MARKET
Taylors Farmers Market is hosted in the already booming Taylors Mill, home to artist studios and cool events, as well as the birthplace of Due South Coffee. There’s ample parking, new bands and food trucks every week, and loads of fresh new vendors like Bossy Baker and her wildly inventive cupcakes, and Swamp Rabbit Salads with their layered Mason jars of goodness ready to go. Some vendors are familiar faces from other farm-stands and markets, like Holliday’s Veggie Patch, Naked Pasta and the brand new, knock-your-socks-off bread source, Bake Room, whose baguettes, croissants (look out for the savory prosciutto) and other deliciousness use several locally-milled flours. Bake Room will also be at the TD Saturday Market in Downtown Greenville and Travelers Rest on Saturdays. But again and again, wandering the white tents in the shadow of the mill, we were glad to have more than one chance a week to talk with folks for whom this kind of handmade, homegrown food matters.
Like Amber Twomey, the owner of Speckled Cakes, a new vendor selling homemade frostings, mixes and cakes baked in Mason jars. The idea came from a family tradition of birthday cakes, although as with most small ideas played out on a big scale, there are fewer cakes at home now. “My poor husband,” she says. “Half the time his cake just stays in the Pyrex dish.”
Taylors Farmers Market
250 Mill Street
May 5-August 25
GREER FARMERS MARKET
Greer Farmers Market occupies the parking lot for The Depot on Thursdays, the curve of the tracks a fitting setting for this bustling new gathering, now in its second year after a short test season last fall. You’ll find prepared food favorites like Humble Roots pimento cheese, and Ms. Lillian’s Pie Spices, offering spice blends especially suited to home baking. Old friends Spurgeon Farms and Satterfield Farm sets up here, as well as Harp & Shamrock Croft, with their veggies, plants, eggs and soaps you can also catch at the Hub City Farmers Market on Saturdays. New vendors get us excited too, like Nood Clean, selling natural cleaning products, and Upstate Greens, run by the McCabe family.
Right now, Upstate Greens is a small husband and wife venture in a backyard shipping container, focusing on microgreens, herbs and other leafy vegetables. But Jason McCabe plans a larger future. He’s a veteran himself, and sees the power to heal in tending to what grows. Phase two of Upstate Greens will bring a greenhouse and hydroponics accessible to disabled veteran workers. It’s all part of how these growers (and makers and bakers) give back to their community.
Greer Farmers Market
300 Randall Street
April 7-October 27
Visit edibleupcountry.com for the 2016 Edible Upcountry Guide to Farmers Market for a complete listing of markets in our area.