By: Scott Nishimura1
By: Shilo Urban
By: Kyle Whitecotton
In a city nicknamed Cowtown, steaks and barbecue become dietary staples (and maybe a little Tex-Mex too). We know commodities like meat, tamales and tortillas abound in Fort Worth, but there’s a growing scene for locally produced fruits and vegetables, grass-fed beef, fresh-baked goods, handmade cheeses, locally roasted coffees and now, even spirits. Is Fort Worth becoming a food lovers’ paradise? With expertise and guidance from talented local chefs and food gurus, we compiled a guide designed to showcase our area’s beautiful products along with world-sourced finds. From flavorful ramps from Cox Farms in Azle and figs from Elizabeth Anna’s on 8th Ave. to flat-rice noodles from Nguyen Loi market in Haltom City and loaves of French bread from Black Rooster Bakery, we are blessed with a diverse abundance of riches. Fort Worth might outgrow its meat-only moniker yet.
|Elizabeth Samudio sits with her fresh produce grown on-site at Elizabeth Anna.|
Any farmer will tell you fruits and vegetables are most abundant, nutritious and delicious when grown in their specific region, on their own time. Think of exploring your area farmers’ market as a foodie adventure and be willing to try unfamiliar items. Markets are now found at several locations around town, and local products can even be delivered to your doorstep in some zip codes. These are just a few of our area’s market options. Visit one, and chances are you’ll rarely want to visit a mega-grocer for produce again.
Cowtown Farmers Market
There are now five locations for Cowtown Farmers Market, and all are operated by the North Central Texas Farmers Market Corp. Most vendors have a presence at all five, and all are located within 150 miles of Fort Worth. September is still part of the summer harvest, thanks to the Texas heat. Expect to see tomatoes, melons, peaches, summer squash, okra, peppers and herbs. All markets accept cash, debit and credit cards. cowtownfarmersmarket.com
Westside Good to know: This is Cowtown’s biggest market with the most vendors and most activity, meaning items go fast. Products include cut flowers and plants, tamales, bread and baked goods, soap and bath products. Ellerbe Fine Foods Chef Molly McCook is a frequent shopper and likes tomatoes from Scott Farms in Cisco and unique items like ramps and specialty squash from Cox Farm in Azle. Don’t miss the market’s melon festival on Sept. 15, featuring cooking demos, a seed-spitting contest for kids and live music.
When to go: Saturdays from 8 a.m.-noon (year-round) and Wednesdays, 8 a.m.-noon (seasonal)
Where it’s at: 3821 Southwest Blvd., Fort Worth, Texas 76116
Downtown Fort Worth Good to know: This is Cowtown’s newest location and is geared primarily toward downtown workers and residents who can walk there. Most Westside vendors are present here, including Doak Orchards out of Bowie, offering peaches that are a favorite among regular shoppers. The sweet fruit is typically available until our area’s first freeze. B&G’s Garden is another popular vendor. Typically present at all Cowtown Farmers Markets, the farm is widely known for its asparagus. Chef McCook likes the farm’s edamame.
When to go: Tuesdays from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. (seasonal)
Where it’s at: 1000 Throckmorton St., Federal Plaza Park, Fort Worth, Texas 76102
Richland Hills Good to know: Produce, tamales, bread and baked goods are available at this smaller market, which is open on Saturday, a half-hour earlier than the busier Westside market.
When to go: Saturdays, 7:30 a.m.-1 p.m. (seasonal)
Where it’s at: 6980 Baker Blvd., Richland Hills, Texas 76118
Near Southside Good to know: For now, this smaller market offers produce only.
When to go: Wednesdays, 7:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
Where it’s at: Dr. Marion J. Brooks Building, 1101 S. Main St., Fort Worth, Texas 76104
South Fort Worth Good to know: Another produce-only market, the South Fort Worth market is located in far southeast Fort Worth.
When to go: Thursdays, 7:30 a.m.-1 p.m.
Where it’s at: Resource Connection, 1500 Circle Drive, Fort Worth, Texas 76119
Cold Springs Farm
One of our area’s most well-known farmers is Beverly Thomas, the beautiful blonde who manages many acres of certified organic produce in Weatherford with her two dogs, Shush and Flossy, always at her side. She’s known for her heirloom vegetables and rare items, like lagenaria and Gill’s red pippin squash, and even commercially extinct melons.
How to buy: Thomas sells her produce via CSA, or community-shared agriculture. Folks pay a flat price and commit to picking up produce once a week for eight weeks at a local pick-up point on Saturday mornings from 10:30 a.m.-1 p.m. (Be prepared to make new foodie friends with other CSA-ers during pick-ups.) Thomas will give you five items of her choosing, and you get to pick five more from her offerings. Visit coldspringsfarmcsa.com to register and pay online for her next available eight-week share.
It’s a garden, farm, market and landscape consulting business rolled into one. Visit Elizabeth Anna for fresh produce every Saturday, featuring items like figs and vibrant greens, grown on-site and from area farm friends of owner Elizabeth Samudio. Guests can also purchase garden kits with recipes that include everything one needs to make a locally-grown meal.
2825 8th Ave.
Fort Worth, Texas 76110
An Austin-based delivery service, Greenling brings the farmers’ market to you. Earlier this year, Greenling expanded its services to the Dallas/Fort Worth region, sourcing from farms and purveyors all over Texas. Vendors include Grapevine Grains, who provides stone ground flours and rolled oats. Visit greenling.com and enter your zip code to see if Greenling can deliver to your doorstep.
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By: Scott Nishimura1
By: Shilo Urban
By: Kyle Whitecotton