A Tisket A Tasket, Get Out Your Farmers’ Market Basket: Pilot Market Opens Next Sunday

What could be better than the return of Lake Oswego’s popular Farmers’ Market? A pilot farmers’ market located in Lake Grove and debuting next week, Sunday March 7 from 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.!

Yes, Mercato Grove, the new residential and retail development in the former Mercantile Village location, is presenting this project in collaboration with the Lake Oswego Parks and Recreation Department. This gives the department the opportunity to evaluate the interest for a permanent market in the 97035 zip code area. It will be small, with about 15 vendors, and operate in accordance with all Oregon Health Authority Covid-19 guidelines to ensure the safety of vendors, market patrons, volunteers, staff and the community.

Judging by the lineup of farmers/growers and hot food/refreshment suppliers, I’d say this pilot project is already off to a great start. Plus, for those of us who are already “channeling summer,” it gives us a taste of summer’s farmers’ market bounty a good two months sooner!

Here are some of the vendors worth checking out. Please note that some will appear on a rotating basis.

LIL STARTS. I’m sure my daughter, who is trying to grow a green thumb, will be visiting this place. Owners Luke and Lillian Klimaszewski use sustainable farming practices to grow clean, healthy produce and plants on 2.5 acres of cultivated land in the East Columbia Neighborhood of Portland and in Orient, Oregon. Right now our lettuce starts are about 1/4” high so thinking their starter plants might offer a higher chance of success!

JUNIPER LAYNE FARM. Located on a quarter acre in Happy Valley (with another half acre in Boring, Oregon) this Certified Naturally Grown farm is how one young woman decided to realize her passion for food. All vegetables, berries, and flowers are grown without the use of synthetic pesticides, herbicides, inorganic fertilizers, GMO seeds, or other environmentally harmful practices.

aMYLK. This vendor produces pure plant-based mylks that are not only delicious but also beautiful. Sold in old-fashioned milk glass containers, some of the pastel colors will have you curious to taste what’s inside. Some of the popular flavors include: Blue Belle, an almond based mylk whose color comes from an ancient strain of blue green micro algae derived from Spirulina, harvested from Klamath Lake; and I’m Beautiful, another almost based mylk in a beautiful rose color that I assume comes from the beet root powder and schisandra berry.

THREE HEARTS FARM. This small family-run farm just 30 miles south of Portland focuses mostly on specialty cut flowers and fillers. With spring flowering bulbs, annuals and perennials strutting their stuff right now, look for some spectacular bouquets to choose from.

DANIELLE’S SAUCES. This homegrown company has received national recognition, winning more than 40 national awards for its gourmet sauces that their website says strives to “enhance, not dominate, the taste of prepared foods.” Choose from A-Too Savory Sauce, Extra Hot or Sweet Habanero, Sweet Chili, Original Teriyaki, Cajun Dust and more.  

DOUBLE TROUBLE BAKERS. This Vancouver based operation wants to take the trouble out of baking for you by doing it for you! Select from classic cookies like chocolate chip, oatmeal, molasses or peanut butter or one of their ramped up varieties such as double chocolate chocolate chip, or oatmeal cranberry white chocolate.

FILLS DONUTS. This collaboration between two popular Portland chefs will also be a permanent fixture in Lake Oswego once Mercato Village opens. Featuring Berliner style donuts and traditional crullers, it’s destined to be one of the first places my donut-loving son visits when he returns from living abroad in London.

JIMMY TOMATO. Featuring small batch cooking of “Old School” recipes, this small family business offers a Classic Italian Tomato and Classic Tomato and Meat Sauce that has been handed down for generations.  They’ve spent hours over the stove so you don’t have to. Just take home, cook up some pasta and enjoy.

CRAFT COCKTAILS. When it comes to enjoying a good drink, seems you can leave the bartending to the experts without leaving home. I guess it only seems natural that the craft beer explosion would segue to the craft cocktail revolution and several of the contenders will be parading their wares through the Lake Grove Farmers Market. Here are some of the offerings:

503 Distilling. They feature delicious cocktails ready to drink out of a can like the Wicked Mule(vodka infused with fresh lime and ginger blended in homemade ginger syrup and carbonate) and the La Vida Mocha (cinnamon infused rum with Mexican chocolate and riff cold brewed coffee). You can also try their homemade spirits: gin, rum, wildfire cinnamon rum, pear brandy, vodka, whiskey and pear brandy.

Straightaway Cocktails. Enjoy classic and lesser-known spirited and balanced cocktails right out of a bottle and ready to pour: Margarita, Oregon Old Fashioned, Negroni, Lintik (gin aged with lemon, house-made simple syrup and bitters) and Paper Plane (rye whiskey, liquers with natural flavors, cochineal extract) and The Cosmos. They also offer spritzers as well.

Westward Whiskey. Whiskey—it’s their specialty. Choose from an assortment.

Wild Roots offers real fruit infused spirits inspired by the Northwest. Vodka flavors include Apple Cinnamon, Marionberry, Pear, Dark Sweet Cherry, Cranberry, Peach and Huckleberry. Gin comes in Cucumber and Grapefruit.

The market will be located on Hallmark Drive between Mercantile Drive and Collins Way with parking in the Lake Grove Elementary School parking lot.

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About lovelakeoswego

I feel pretty lucky—I live where I work and I love where I live. As a Realtor in Lake Oswego, I get to share that enthusiasm with clients every day. Through this blog, with the help of my freelance writer wife, Genita, I’d like to share that enthusiasm with you. The quality of life you’ll find in Lake Oswego belies its size—there is so much to experience here from a fireworks show over the lake on the 4th of July to the Festival of the Arts--one of the premier arts events in the region. So please check in each week for another reason why I love Lake Oswego and who knows—maybe you’ll fall in love too! If you’re interested in experiencing Lake Oswego personally, please feel free to contact me either on my cell at (503) 939-9801, via email at costellok@hasson.com or check my website by clicking the link in the "Contact me" section in the right hand column. I would love to show you around.
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