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Before I retired this year, I was never able to attend our local Farmers’ Market in East York because it was held on Tuesdays from 8 am to 2 pm. Since I was at work, I always missed the market. But starting in June, I visited the market every Tuesday and took photographs and got to know the wonderful vendors and farmers.

Another great market in our neighbourhood is the Withrow Park Farmer’s Market.October_18_walkabout_5_2012-10-18_10-52-46_DSC_8013

I only  had a chance to visit the Withrow Market on its very last two weeks of the season. I remember visiting the market specifically to get some Monforte Dairy cheese that I needed for a party we were having, and it was a rainy and miserable day in late October. All of the Farmers’ Markets wrap up at the end of October, but Withrow Park had a great idea for a Winter Market. Starting on November 6th, they held a Winter Market every Tuesday from 3 pm to 7 pm and yesterday (December 18) was the last market for the year. The Winter Market moved indoors to the second floor of the Danforth Church at the corner of Danforth and Bowden Street.

I made a point of visiting the market yesterday to take some photographs and pick up a few goodies. The vendors varied from week to week, but here are the vendors that were in attendance yesterday. Just inside the door I met Chef Roger from Saucier Foods with a great selection of French pastries (click on any photo to see a larger version):December _18_WithrowMarket_8_2012-12-18_15-18-23_DSC_7234December _18_WithrowMarket_2_2012-12-18_15-16-21_DSC_7228December _18_WithrowMarket_4_2012-12-18_15-17-19_DSC_7230December _18_WithrowMarket_7_2012-12-18_15-17-36_DSC_7233I bought two of Chef Roger’s apple strudel cakes shown above in the second photo.

My friends at Monforte Dairy seem to be at every market that I visit. I have met Tina at many markets around the city and she was at Withrow yesterday:December _18_WithrowMarket_73_2012-12-18_15-57-54_DSC_7299December _18_WithrowMarket_61_2012-12-18_15-47-18_DSC_7287

This is Monforte's awesome aged Toscano—our favourite!

This is Monforte’s awesome aged Toscano—our favourite!

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St. John’s Bakery was here with lots of great looking breads:December _18_WithrowMarket_13_2012-12-18_15-19-23_DSC_7239December _18_WithrowMarket_11_2012-12-18_15-18-55_DSC_7237December _18_WithrowMarket_14_2012-12-18_15-19-43_DSC_7240

Toorshi Foods had some delicious looking pickled items:December _18_WithrowMarket_68_2012-12-18_15-54-15_DSC_7294December _18_WithrowMarket_15_2012-12-18_15-21-04_DSC_7241December _18_WithrowMarket_18_2012-12-18_15-21-25_DSC_7244December _18_WithrowMarket_21_2012-12-18_15-22-03_DSC_7247

Next was Green Gate Farms who had fresh and frozen beef and pork:December _18_WithrowMarket_32_2012-12-18_15-24-27_DSC_7258

I bought a beautiful fresh boneless pork loin roast

I bought a beautiful fresh boneless pork loin roast

Kind Organics had all kinds of greens and sprouts:December _18_WithrowMarket_40_2012-12-18_15-37-14_DSC_7266December _18_WithrowMarket_37_2012-12-18_15-36-33_DSC_7263December _18_WithrowMarket_74_2012-12-18_15-58-14_DSC_7300

Patrick and Sean were providing hot beverages including apple cider:December _18_WithrowMarket_47_2012-12-18_15-43-51_DSC_7273December _18_WithrowMarket_48_2012-12-18_15-44-09_DSC_7274

Weber’s Natural Meats had fresh and frozen products and eggs:December _18_WithrowMarket_58_2012-12-18_15-46-40_DSC_7284December _18_WithrowMarket_50_2012-12-18_15-44-29_DSC_7276

Tiffinday was offering vegan Indian prepared foods:December _18_WithrowMarket_70_2012-12-18_15-55-37_DSC_7296December _18_WithrowMarket_56_2012-12-18_15-46-12_DSC_7282December _18_WithrowMarket_52_2012-12-18_15-44-54_DSC_7278December _18_WithrowMarket_54_2012-12-18_15-45-16_DSC_7280

Greenwood Organic brought freshly dug carrots and potatoes along with spicy arugula, squash and olive oil soaps:December _18_WithrowMarket_27_2012-12-18_15-23-47_DSC_7253December _18_WithrowMarket_31_2012-12-18_15-24-11_DSC_7257December _18_WithrowMarket_24_2012-12-18_15-22-55_DSC_7250December _18_WithrowMarket_66_2012-12-18_15-53-50_DSC_7292

Brian Hamlin was presenting all kinds of honey and wax products. He has numerous beehives all around the city and they provide honey with different flavours. He has a hive on the roof of my old alma mater, U of T, Scarborough College campus:December _18_WithrowMarket_42_2012-12-18_15-39-02_DSC_7268December _18_WithrowMarket_41_2012-12-18_15-37-30_DSC_7267December _18_WithrowMarket_44_2012-12-18_15-39-55_DSC_7270December _18_WithrowMarket_69_2012-12-18_15-55-14_DSC_7295

I had a great time at this market and met some new friends. It’s also worth mentioning that the market is  “kid” friendly. They have an adjoining room where face painting and crafts are offered while Mom and Dad shop the market.

My thanks to Roberta and Corey for inviting me and I certainly look forward to visiting Withrow Market in the Spring on Saturdays.

Please follow Withrow Market on Twitter @WithrowMarket and on Facebook.

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