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After a blustery winter, area farmers’ markets are finally opening the pearly gates to their organic heavens. But which one is best for you? Here are the fresh market options located around Denver, whether you’re looking to make a pit-stop for locally-grown nosh or turn a morning market outing into a whole-day treat.
If you want to… try out trendy products (hello: oat milk) at an OG market
Go To: Boulder Farmers’ Market
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This tried-and-true non-profit bazaar has been a Front Range mainstay for decades, but that doesn’t mean its offerings are stuck in the past—in fact, the market is constantly adding new, ahead-of-the-curve vendors. If you’re aboard the oat milk trend train, your agenda must include a visit to Toats Oats’ booth to sip some locally-made oat milk and nibble on sustainably-made cookies made from leftover oat pulp. Also new this year is Papusas Familias, an authentic El Salvadoran restaurant which serves up vegan, vegetarian, and meat-stuffed papusas. (If you can’t get out of bed on Sundays to make the market—or want to avoid crowds—try the more laid-back Wednesday night market. There’s still live music and a swath of fresh offerings, plus a beer garden if you’re getting a 5-o-clock-somewhere hankering.) 13th St. between Canyon and Arapahoe, Boulder; Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.; Wednesdays, 4-8 p.m. Started May 1
If you want to… do your weekly grocery shopping all in one go
Go To: Cherry Creek Fresh Market
You’ll be able to cross practically every item off your grocery list at the biggest market in Denver. Izzio Bakery is there for your sourdough bread needs, and with a jar of cranberry-jalapeño jam from Brad B Jammin and some European cheese from La Montagne des Saveurs, your sandwich requirements are met. For fruit, buy an armful of ripe peaches and plums from Ela Family Farms. You’ll even be able to pick up rations for your four-legged-friend from Milk Pet Foods. Come with an empty stomach: Samples are plentiful and the food trucks are some of the best in Colorado. 1st Ave. and University Blvd.; Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Started May 4
If you want to… quell midday munchies while wandering around LoDo
Go To: Union Station Farmers’ Market
Set on the plaza outside Union Station, this growers-only oasis brings countryside produce to the heart of downtown. Cottage Foods Act baker David Kaminer of Raleigh Street Bakery is always there, selling his crusty artisan loaves, and PB Love’s small-batch peanut butter is the perfect spread for a thick slice. Other mouth-watering Colorado-made picks include Acres at Warren Tech’s greens and gorgeous veggies and Mercantile Dining & Provisions’ pastries. That plus weekly chef demos at 10 a.m. should quiet lunch-time hunger pangs—and help you explore downtown for a few more hours. BONUS: On opening day, the first 100 mothers to make a purchase at the market will receive a potted succulent from Fresh Herb Co. Swing by the orange info booth at the market’s entrance to pick up your plant and feel the love. 1701 Wynkoop St.; Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Starts May 11
If you want to… make a whole day out of your morning market trip
Go To: Old South Pearl Street Farmers’ Market
Market day never has to end when you go to this centrally-located, beloved iteration. Aside from market staples like bountiful produce stands and food trucks, you can stroll and peruse the shops lining the historic Old South Pearl Street, like Second Star to the Right bookstore and Common Threads boutique. If you didn’t fill up on Sweet Jayne’s caramel honey nut bars, grab a table at one of the many restaurants along the row, including Uno Mas Taqueria and Kaos Pizzeria. 1400 and 1500 blocks of South Pearl St.; Sundays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Starts May 19
If you want to… sip mimosas and browse bunches of kale with your besties
Go to: Highlands Square Farmers’ Market
Skip Sunday morning brunch and sip cool drinks while shopping for top-grade local produce instead. Craft beers, wines, and mimosas will flow freely under the shade of El Camino Community Tavern’s tent this year. This market has also spearheaded an effort to include more small farms with seven additions, including Wheat Ridge-based Ikigai Farms and Lake Hollow Homestead. Keep your eyes peeled for Moringa Infusions’ puckery apple-cider-based juices and Prohibited Provisions’ experimental garlic mixes, in flavors like cilantro-jalapeño and vindaloo curry. 32nd St. and Lowell St.; Sundays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Starts June 2
If you want to… broaden your horizons at the new market on the block
Go To: RiNo Fresh Market
This brand-new RiNo market, located in the recently-opened Boxyard Park at Blake St. and Broadway, will give veteran market-hoppers a new spot to add to their rotation. Expect a robust line up of vendors, including Bjorn Honey with its sweet wares and Noble Hog, which will sell artisan cured meats (think: pesto & brie chicken sausage and black truffle & cognac bacon). Don’t hesitate to bring the kids either; Boxyard Park is a colorful urban park with space for hyper little ones to roam. 2502 N. Broadway; Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Starts June 15