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Behind the farmgate or over the fence and down the lane? Hobart’s Bathurst St. Farmgate Market delivers the goods.
While most of Hobart seems to know about the cornucopia of fresh produce waving at us every week, this is a reminder for those who ‘mean to come’ and tourists who luck out by being here on a Sunday.
The Farmgate Market was started by some very enterprising girls who saw a need, and filled it. (More about them in another post). And it’s one of those projects that was a win/win from the get-go. I am just one of many devotees who make the pilgrimage most Sundays to meet passionate producers, to shop, to savour, to sample and smile.
So a few tips from me and my Polish friends who dash there early to be sure to pick up some of their favourites.
First up on Bronek’s list is the big double stall on the left as you enter from the top of Bathurst Street. It’s owned by a German couple, and their cakes, pastries, eggs and bread are famous. The rye bread and the olive loaf are particularly tasty. And of course, they usually have Bienenstich (German Cake commonly referred to as ‘Bee Sting’) – miss that at your peril!
Then dotted about in no particular order are The Mushroom Man (incredible variety of fresh mushrooms), the Red Hen for marvelous greens and onions and the Hmong people man their usual fresh vegie stalls. The vegies are grown in Richmond and tended carefully by an incredibly interconnected group of Hmongs who have settled and thrive in this far flung land.
Black Mountain Bread does artisan bread and pastries. I’m addicted to their fresh Turkish bread which a chef pulls from a hot oven at the back of a truck and slaps down on a rough wooden bench as we watch.
Lady Hester Sourdough Donuts are not to be missed. Usually sporting a range of 4 delectable fillings, you need to get there early as well. Too late? Too bad, so sad!
There’s a newish coconut yoghurt stall which has great flavours, the Westerway Berry Farm have berries there all season, and further down is the genius of the Philadelphia Bakery and if they have it, their roast garlic and chive potato bread has me dreaming of it at night.
Then of course there’s Eat Street with a mouthwatering selection of Mexican, Indian, Korean, Australian and Italian street food – it’s all good so just choose what you want. That’s if you’ve managed to bypass the temptation of queuing behind the faithful at Masaaki’s Sushi truck. Or queue for the Octopus man – the sizzle and smell of that fresh seafood permeates the market, and everyone sighs with happiness when he’s there.
At the end of Eat Street is the Bury Me Standing Coffee & Bagel stand, though they usually sell the bagels back up the street out of a double stall, and the Eat Street place does coffee for the snackers.
And the hidden part? Go down the grassy area before Eat Street, which begins with some tables to perch in the sun, and see a hidden artscape – down to a wall with a mural that is colour and sass that sums up Hobart for me in a wonderful execution. Keep heading down and enter Mathers Lane, into an arcade that hides a tiny coffee shop that hands down does fantastic coffee and light snacks.
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And there you have it – just a brief overview of the market’s main players. But don’t stop there – they are all good, and passionate in their own way. So get there early (they open at 8.30am, every Sunday and pack up at 1pm).
Any faves I’ve missed? Share with us!