Updated: Mar 23
Hesitant to buy beef out of a trailer? Not sure what to buy or how to cook it? Overwhelmed by the crowds, baby strollers and cheese curds at the downtown market? Fear not, I'm here to answer all of your farmer's market questions.
I've never attended the market, what should I expect?
The first time at the farmer's market can be overwhelming. I recommend taking a walk around the market first to get your bearings, see the product offerings and observe. If you can't find something you're looking for, just ask! Most of the vendors know who sells what products and can direct you to the right location. There is also an info tent at both markets that can help you.
What farmer's market do you attend?
This is probably the most common question we get. We attend two public markets during the week. The Westside Community Market is on Saturdays from 7am-12:30pm. The market is in the parking lot behind the UW Digestive Health building on the corner of University and Whitney Way. On Sundays, we can be found at Ahuska Park at the Monona Farmer's Market from 9am-1pm. These markets are both excellent. There is a great selection of vendors and products at each location.
Do I have to pre-order?
Not at all. We bring a trailer with multiple freezers in it so we can bring our whole repertoire of cuts. However, we do occasionally run out of a few specialty cuts. For example, there are only two skirt steaks per animal. We've worked with our butcher to expand our product offerings (see our blog post on our specialty cuts!) so we usually have a good alternative if we do run out of something like skirt steak. Planning a party and want to make sure we have the cuts you want, email us and we'll set them aside for you! We also have a new order form available on the Products tab of our website so you can order ahead!
You really sell beef out of a trailer?
We do! We transport our beef in freezers so that the beef stays frozen even while we're off the farm. We've found this works significantly better than loading up coolers for each market. It's a mobile farm store!
What's better about a farmer's market than the grocery store?
You're buying directly from the farmer! Whether its meat, tomatoes or carrots, the person standing behind the display is more than likely the person who planted the seed or raised the calf. We can tell you about our production methods, the uniqueness of each variety of vegetable or cut of meat and how the weather is affecting the season. We can also share some of the best ways to prepare that item when you are cooking it for friends or family.
Do I need cash?
For us, no! We know that meat tends to be a higher priced item so we take credit cards as well as electronic payments like Venmo and PayPal as a way to pay. However, most vegetable vendors take cash so bring plenty of cash if you're buying more than our pasture-raised meats.
It's raining or snowing, will you still be there?
Of course! Rain or snow, wind or heat, we'll be there. We try to attend every market during the season as its the best way for us to interact with you! Using chest freezers in the trailer has really helped keep everything cold during the hottest days of August so we don't have to worry about things melting. So bring your rain jacket and come visit us even if its raining! There is plenty of space under the tent to stay dry while you're making your selections.
In a future post, I'll share some of of the most common questions customers ask us and some of the most unique questions! We look forward to seeing you at the markets this weekend!