In order to host the perfect farm-to-table dinner party, one needs a farm and a table (and some refined culinary skills if we’re being honest)! While we can’t help with the latter requirements, we can surely help with the former. One Manhattan Square condo residents will surely have the (home) venue taken care of, and luckily, the Lower East Side’s Youthmarket is like having the greatest hits from dozens of local farms right around the block.
There are many wonderful and vibrant green markets throughout the city. Nearly every neighborhood has a weekly or biweekly option, but most, if not all, pale in comparison to Youthmarket. Founded in 2011, the farm stands are run in part by graduates of Henry Street’s Young Adult Internship Program, who are taught about nutrition and operating a small business. The students bring an infectious, positive energy to Youthmarket, which sets it apart from other local markets.
Every Thursday until mid-November, from 8 am to 3 pm on Grand Street between Pitt and Willet, fresh fruits and vegetables from 40 regional farms are laid out in abundance. Fruits and berries from Benten Berries and Produce; apples and homemade cider from LynOaken Orchards, Toigo Orchards, and Prospect Hill Orchards; cherries, peaches, and plums from Fishkill Farms; cranberries from Willow’s Cranberries; biodynamic greens from Remembrance Farm; maple syrup from Platte Creek Maple Farm; honey from Tremblay Apiaries; mushrooms from Primordia Mushroom Farm; and pies from Briermere Farm that are guaranteed to blow your mind. (We personally recommend the strawberry rhubarb, the cherry, and the apple crumb.) This list only scratches the surface, as the options for fresh vegetables are wide and varied; any regionally grown vegetable you seek can be found here.
Many residents of the Lower East Side will only do their produce shopping on Thursdays, as they know they’ll never find stuff quite this fresh at the supermarket. Plus, there’s a real feeling of community here. And in terms of prepping for a dinner party, there’s not much else you could ask for. From hors-d’oeuvres to dessert, the Lower East Side Youthmarket has you covered.