north union farmers market

It’s hard to believe on days like today, but it really is spring. The new season means more than just warmer weather, but also outdoor seating (ok, that may still be a month off), new seasonal menus (check out Fahrenheit’s spring menu) and the opening of the North Union Farmers Market.

On April 11 at 8 .m., the market officially opens for the season at Shaker Square and lasts thru December 12. For west siders, the market opens at Crocker Park on April 18 until November 21. For a complete list of all market openings, click here.

Buying directly from the market not only means a better quality product on your dinner table, but you’re supporting our local farmers and economy. I personally can’t wait for the market to open. I don’t visit Shaker Square as much as I used to when I lived right around the corner. Now, we head to Chagrin Falls. Smaller, but still great. I’m looking forward to introducing Natalie to it all very soon.

Can’t get enough of the market? The Spring Benefit is April 27 from 6:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m. at ETON. Enjoy a feast prepared by over 25 of the best local chefs, including:

Bar Cento, Mike Nowak
Bistro 185, Ruth & Marc Levine
Boulevard Blue, Kurt Steeber
CK’s Steakhouse at Renaissance Quail Hollow Resort, Jonathan Buchner
Crop Bistro, Steve Schimoler & Olena Gudz
Culinary Occasions, Bob Sferra & Joyce Potts
Dewey’s Coffee House, Diane Armstrong
Grotto, Fabio Salerno
Grovewood Tavern, Brandon Kercher
J. Pistone Market & Gathering Place, John Pistone
L’Albatros, Zachary Bruell
La Campagna, Carmella Fragassi
Light Bistro, Matt Mathlage
Lola, Derek Clayton
Olof’s Daughter, Elise Jansson Holtier
Parallax, Zachary Bruell
Pier W, Regan Reik
Sapore, Matthew Anderson
Sara’s Place by Gavi, Richie Cunningham
SASA, Scott Kim
South Market Bistro, Michael Mariola
Stone Mad Pub, Pete Leneghan
Table 45, Zachary Bruell
The City Square Steakhouse, Michael Mariola
The Greenhouse Tavern, Jonathan Sawyer
The Viking Store Cooking School, Adam Wilson
West Side Market Café, Matthew Pell
Zoss, the Swiss Baker, Barbara Zoss

Tickets start at $80 per person. Call 216.751.7656.


  1. tom
    Posted March 30, 2009 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

    the fahrenheit menu in that link does not look very seasonal. that’s either a mistake, or their idea of spring flavors is a lot different than mine.

  2. michelle v
    Posted March 31, 2009 at 8:51 am | Permalink

    You’re right, it’s my mistake – sorry about that.

  3. Jackie
    Posted March 31, 2009 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    I’m still baffled by the fact that the NUFM holds it’s major fundraiser in April, when there’s very little local product to be had. What ingredients will these chefs be using? A few mushrooms from Killbuck and produce trucked in by Sysco from agri-corporate farms around the state?
    Why not hold this event in the fall when the chefs can actually purchase more goods from the actual farmers that this initiative supports? It doesn’t make sense.

  4. Cory
    Posted March 31, 2009 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    check out they have 441 farms registered under ohio… mushrooms are not the only thing growing right now…. greenhouses and hydroponic farming is sustainable and produces quality products that is in your “backyard”… sysco trucks are bringing in local crop products a system developed by Steve Schimoler… I dont know much about the people running the market… but i do know all these chefs take pride in what they do..

  5. Donita
    Posted March 31, 2009 at 4:24 pm | Permalink

    Hi Jackie,

    That is a great question and it makes some good points.

    There are many reasons Let's Get Fresh & Green is held in the spring. One reason is historical, when we first started out we needed "seed money" to get the market up and running. Let's Get Fresh is not just an event, but a major milestone for us.

    While produce may seem sparse in spring, our farmers still have much to offer. Items such as spring onions, leeks, arugula, kale, spinach, swiss chard, pea shoots, basil, ramps, apples,honey, maple syrup, organic grains and mushrooms are readily available at the market, not to mention hydroponic and greenhouse offerings.

    Meat is also a very important farm product and in the spring we have plentiful amounts of beef, lamb, pork, dairy products, organic cheese and wonderful fresh farm eggs. We highlight these at the spring benefit. The participating chefs have built an awareness of the quality of grassfed beef, berkshire hogs, fresh eggs, and milk, not just produce, available in Ohio . Also, chefs do not purchase the farm ingredients or produce, they are given this product by North Union Farmers Market who purchases it directly from the farms.

    If you prefer summer produce, maybe you might be more inclined to attend our Farm to Table event at the Cleveland Botanical Gardens the last Monday in August, stay tuned for more information!

    Overall we are trying to sustain an organization that creates strong farmer's markets to supply local foods to our local community. We look forward to your involvement and seeing you at the event.

    My best to you,

    Donita Anderson
    North Union Farmers Market

  6. Cara
    Posted April 1, 2009 at 10:29 am | Permalink

    I love this market. I’m glad I found it when I moved here in September.

    There’s a Cuban woman who has the best black beans on earth, I remember.

    I didn’t get to try the goat cheese too much (because I was stupidly afraid of it!) but I definitely will this year.

    It’s close enough that I can bike there, actually. I’m so excited!