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Exploring the Pearl: Pearl Farmers Market in San Antonio

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092609_1My friends from out of town have started to use farmers markets as a bargaining chip for me to come see them. The conversation usually goes something like this, “If you come see us, we can go to the market on Saturday.”

This, of course, is a very effective strategy – my friends are smart – and recently resulted in a weekend visit to my friends Kate & Trey in San Antonio. Of course, them being great friends and having two precious boys who are big fun to hang out with didn’t hurt either.
092609_2I had been following the progress of the Pearl Farmers Market since it opened earlier this year and heard great things. The wise folks in San Antonio have re-purposed the old Pearl Brewery as a retail & office space with plenty of room for special events. With the Texas Farm to Table Cafe, a sustainably focused restaurant, already making their home around the corner, I guess it seemed logical to put a farmers market here.
092609_3The market is still growing, but definitely had enough vendors to fill your vegetable crisper and your meat drawer (lamb, goat, beef & bison.) I was delighted to see some familiar vendors like Thunder Heart Bison and loved the vibe of the market. There is a definite buzz to the place.

092609_4One of the true treasures at this market is the Chef’s Table by MesAlegre (means very happy) and Chef Johnny Hernandez. For $20/adult you get to enjoy what looked and smelled like a truly delicious meal from the local farm products. Yum. Unfortunately, with a 4 year old and a 1.5 year old in tow, we did not get to partake this time, but I am definitely coming back. It is recommended that you buy your tickets online as the table frequently sells out.

When we were visiting, there were smokers and grills set up on the corners of the market for the barbecue cook-off to be held the next day. Their presence reinforced how much of a community space the Pearl has become. The Pearl is just that – a jewel in the center of San Antonio that is definitely worth a visit.
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