The CT Farmer’s Market Review: Glastonbury

Strawberry fritters are hot.

The Asian Persuasion and I decided to be sort of productive on Saturday and head to the first day of Glastonbury’s relocated farmer’s market — and use it to kick off our Farmer’s Market Review series.

If you’ve ever driven through Glastonbury you know that there are plenty of farms and they sell their wares at their own stands. And for many years those farmers protested the idea of a farmer’s market on the grounds that it would bring in outside competition. So it was no surprise to see the town’s farms mostly missing from the dozen or so tents on Hubbard Green. (The Chamber of Commerce sells pies from non-local farms at the Apple Harvest Festival — just thought I’d put that out there.)

The town green is spacious, with room for many more tents than were present, so hopefully it will fill up over time. It also happens to be right next to a very old cemetery, which we learned people are still being buried in (as evidenced by the funeral procession heading in that morning).

There were restaurants like the Pond House handing out delicious samples, as well as some out-of-towners selling things like iced tea,  cheeses, and soap. We bought all of those (get cream cheese from the Ladies of Lebanon, like, now!) and talked to the folks from Wind Hill Community Farm for a while. Check out the website and the event schedule because you can wander out onto the farm and get delicious food from local chefs — or you can get your own plot.

But most of the people actually selling vegetables only had the same greens, and small squash that I have in my garden. That’s partly just a side-effect of the time of year, but it was also kind of lame. Can’t someone grow a currant or something? Anyway, we’ll go back later in the year and see if things pick up because the town’s farms have so much to offer.

Glastonbury Farmer’s Market

Concept: B

Effort: C+

Execution: C-

Normally our story might end here…but we went on from there…

After we did a lap around the green we decided to head over to the Old Cider Mill, which apparently decided to take my advice (sort of). Normally, the Cider Mill would not be open, but this year it is — and apparently will be open 10 months out of the year and feature all-things Glastonbury. There were lots of plants for sale, and shirts supporting the sports teams but the building itself was still kind of sad. But I think they’re just getting started, or at least that’s the impression I got from the sign inside that laid out its business plan. However, the merchandise had cobwebs dangling around it which was confusing for a place that just opened.

After we left the Cider Mill I made the mistake of mentioning Robb’s Farm and its delicious ice cream. So we, of course, decided to go get some (or rather, the Asian Persuasion demanded it). But on the way we passed a  sign for strawberry fritters at Dondero’s Farm.

Now, I consider myself to be a connoisseur of fritters but I didn’t even know strawberry fritters were an option so I had to  veer off track. I stood around for a while waiting for my fritters while the AP bought some jam and tomatoes, but my fritters were as fresh and delicious as could be. There were also a couple of cute dogs roaming around, which is always a plus. And the strawberry fried goods turned out to be better cold than apple fritters are. I know this because I ate a couple for breakfast the next day. I am not ashamed.

We finished off the day with a trip to Robb’s for ice cream, where the AP took unthinkable pictures of a goat’s butt and had her first taste of Udderly Delicious, one of the best ice cream flavors to ever grace this green earth.

So our recommendation is that if you’re going to visit the Glastonbury Farmer’s market any time soon, you should follow it up with visit to some other delicious destinations.

UPDATE 7/23/13: I headed back to the Glastonbury Farmer’s Market in search of cheese and found that participation had grown in just a few short weeks. I had to run in and out but the new tent that caught my eye was the one selling locally caught fish! Yum! Also, the Ladies of Lebanon were boasting meat on the menu this time around. We see a revised grade in this market’s future.