Wednesday, December 2, 2009

New Amsterdam Market

New Amsterdam Market
South Street, between Beekman Street and Peck Slip (adjacent to the South Street Seaport)

Farmers’ markets have long been a favored hunting ground for home cooks, but with the organic and local food movements’ recent surges in popularity, farmers’ markets are becoming the latest trend. I’m generally not a fan of “foodie fads”, but I can only be grateful for a trend that celebrates regional, seasonal produce, and promotes local farmers and their businesses. Not to mention it’s the perfect way to spend a beautiful day outdoors!

The New Amsterdam Market is a relative newcomer to New York’s heavy lineup of farmers’ markets, which includes the infamous Union Square Greenmarket. It used to appear once a year, but in honor of the Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial (the 400th anniversary of Henry Hudson & Samuel de Champlain’s explorations, and the 200th anniversary of Robert Fulton’s historic steamship journey up the Hudson River), there are four markets scheduled this year, one each month beginning with September 2009. Little Scarlet has it on good authority that if the markets are popular and profitable enough, they may continue on a monthly basis into 2010 - so if you haven’t been yet, you must visit December’s market!

Designed in the spirit of London’s Borough Market and the old markets of Paris’s Les Halles (often called “the stomach of Paris”), the New Amsterdam Market revives the old-world European charm of open-air markets in the former location of another well-loved market - the Fulton Fish Market.

Cheesemongers, fishmongers, and gossipmongers all flock to the New Amsterdam Market. There are butchers, bakers ... no candlestick makers, but there are dozens of farmers hawking their seasonal produce, pickled vegetables, and handmade honeys, while vintners sell their wines and hard ciders, offering pairing suggestions for upcoming holiday meals.

Some vendors (Luke’s Lobster & Porchetta, for example) sell sandwiches or soups, but almost everything shown at the New Amsterdam Market can be sampled free of charge. These vendors believe in their products and want to share their smoked, pickled okra and apple cider-washed rind cheeses with the world! Of course, if you want the market to continue into 2010, it helps to buy something, so get out there and support your local farmers!

Look through the pictures below for a small portion of some of the fantastic goods to be expected at the next market, on December 20.

Oysters from W&T Seafood and Stella

Wine and ciders from New York State. Slyboro’s Hidden Star cider and Bellwether’s Liberty Spy ciders were fantastic! Bellwether also makes a Black Magic cider with a touch of black currant - it adds a “mystical” taste and turns the cider a brilliant purple jewel tone.

Porchetta sandwiches from (where else?!) Porchetta

Smoked, pickled okra from Rick’s Picks. Handy corn, too!

Kale from McEnroe Organic Farm & beautiful flower arrangements from Zone 7.

Fresh, raw pasta from The Ravioli Store

Breads from Pain D’Avignon (featured above), Sullivan Street Bakery, Balthazar, Hot Bread Kitchen, Nordic Breads, and many more!


  1. i missed november's market but after reading your post, i WON'T miss december's! would they really stop having it in 2010?? love the pics :)

  2. Could we be any luckier? What a magnificent way to shop for friends or family or yourself at the holidays!!

  3. I now have "market envy"....I wish that there was a similar maket close to me, ours are much smaller. Thanks for the info and great picks!

  4. Wow this look GREAT! I wish there were more of them.

  5. I am so jealous. Our outdoor markets here in south Florida are nothing to rave over.