Spring is truly underway, and in Australia that means one thing: Mangoes.
We don’t mean to suggest that mangoes are the only thing worth eating in Spring (although… it is worth considering), but the first mangoes arriving at the markets are a sure-fire sign that fruit picking season is about to well and truly kick off.
So while hoards of backpackers make their way to the fields to help our farmers, we prefer the simpler, less-sweaty route, of heading to your local farmers markets. A quick Google will help you find your nearest farmers markets; but if you’re up for a foodie’s road trip, then here is a quick list of some of our favourite markets.
If you want the real deal, and to purchase directly from the farmer, then you can’t get much closer to the action than at Talbot Farmers Markets.
On top of hand-picked produce and preserves, you can often meet local wine viticulturists and winemakers. Talbot is on the edge of the emerging Ballarat wine region, and some of the local boutique producers are making some softer styled wines that are definitely worth your while.
Tucked away in the old train sheds in trendy Eveleigh lies one of our favourite places to peruse produce; The Carriageworks Farmers Markets.
Whether you’re after fresh farm eggs, artisan cured meats, or even gourmet tea; these markets are held every Sunday - rain, hail or shine.
We advise getting there early, but if you’re a late starter, then we suggest taking in a lunch at Cornerstone Bar and Café. It’s located within the Carriageworks grounds, and they boast an impressive array of Australian wines
If you’re looking to sample fresh farm mangoes, pineapples, and other tropical fruits straight from the farm; then Rusty’s Markets should be on your bucket list.
Located on the main drag in Cairns, Rusty’s Markets have been a North Queensland tradition since back in the seventies. Even though it’s a relatively small market, if you compare it to any central market, there’s a real commotion at Rusty’s that’ll make you feel as though you’ve traveled back to a time before major supermarket chains. So don’t be shocked if someone yells prices at you, and come ready to barter and banter.
Yes, we know that it’s touristy. And yes, we know that the interiors leave a lot to be desired.
However, in a few months, it’s going to be too hot to enjoy the alfresco seating by the bay. The metal tables heat up in the sun, and the humidity does no wonders for the scent of fresh fish.
So Spring is the best time (in our opinion) to treat yourself to a glass of your favourite, chilled white; paired with some grilled barramundi, some freshly shucked oysters, or even some delicately carved sashimi.
If the outdoor area is looking a little full when you get there, just take a short stroll around the bay to the Glebe side of the harbour, where you can sit on the grass and enjoy your meal in peace - and make the very best of this fabulously foodie time of year. Flamingo Sparkling Moscato matches perfectly with fish dishes.