The Sunday before Thanksgiving, I went down to the New Amsterdam Market, my favorite market in New York City. It used to take place every Sunday from the late spring to winter, but sadly due to a few unfortunate factors, it only meets sporadically. Their next and last market of 2013 will be on December 15th from 11-5 pm. Please go and support your local producers if you can. If you love food, there is truly no better way to spend a Sunday afternoon. This past market’s theme was Cider, a favorite beverage of mine and one that is apparently making a revival in our fair country (see the New York Times article). There were about 5 or 6 different cider produces present, but only one’s selection of ciders made it home with me. BlackBird Cider Works featured a selection of four ciders, from dry to semi-sweet and sweet. My favorite was the Red Barn Farm Style Cider, one that fell on the sweeter side. I find often times drinkers who prefer a little sweet are often criticized for being unsophisticated. How dare you. There is no reason to be ashamed of enjoying a fabulous Muscato D’Asti, nor should one blush when he or she elects the sweeter of the ciders. Well truth be told, there is a difference between sweet that is just sweet and sweet that is in balance with a range of complex flavors and uses its sugars to round them out to form a perfect giddy melody in your mouth. BlackBird did just that. Their ciders are reasonably priced as well. And while their orchard and tasting room are practically in Canada, they can be purchased in Rochester, Buffalo and now Brooklyn!
Another Greek yogurt?! I know what you are thinking, but Sohha Savory Yogurt puts Chobani and Fage to shame. These guys are so creamy and delicious that you will become an instant convert. I dollop a big spoonful of their regular 2% on my oatmeal every morning. They deliver in NY and are getting more distribution too! Check them out.
So speaking of my oatmeal, a generous drizzle of these guys’ maple syrup is the final touch! Their honey is delicate and delightful as well. Catskill Provisions actually just launched a Honey Whisky that is so well rounded that it appeals to even to the non-whisky drinker! I will be using a little bit of that and their maple syrup to make some maple-bourbon ice cream. Check out their website for all of their wonderful products. They have pretty good distribution in gourmet shops throughout New York as well.
Vermont Sail Fright Project
These Vermontsters were by far the oddest of the vendor bunch at the market. They were at the last market as well, fresh off the boat with all their products from Vermont! They actually sailed down from Vermont to the South Street Seaport. Among their goodies included a wide range of flours, produce, syrups, oils and many knickknacks. I previously purchased some flours from them and sunflower oil. All lovely. This time I picked up a spaghetti squash that I roasted and tossed with a basil and anchovy pesto, capers and sun-dried tomatoes. ‘Twas quite the yummy snack. Anyways check out their philosophy and see if they will be in your neck of the woods anytime soon: vermontsailfreightproject.com
Last but not least is another maple syrup producer. While I am very loyal to Catskill Provisions, Ledgenear Farm’s maple syrup is undeniably delectable. It boasts a bold well rounded flavor that also seems to finish my oatmeal quite well. (Hey no one even said having options was a bad thing…)
So, go to the market on the 15th and regardless go shop local when possible- it tastes and feels better!