Great post on local fruit, but my question is, and it's one I've been asking for a while, how do locals get a hold of local fruit? I've heard in other cities they have these things called farmers markets where local farmers gather in an urban setting and sell their own fruits and vegetables. Hmmmm, you think we'd have one here? Aside from the lack of good farmers markets is the lack of locals being able to procure local ingredients. As you stated, Paradise Farms doesn't sell to the public and others sell to Whole Paycheck, where the markup is outrageous. What's a poor, hungry local to do?
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Ed-- I forwarded your email to Gabriele of Paradise Farms, and she graciously sent this response:
The best local market that I know of in the summer is Robert Is Here fruit stand at Palm Drive (SW344 St) and Tower Rd (192 Ave)on the way to Everglades National Park. He buys fruit from locals. I don't know his markup compared to Whole Foods and he is not organic but he does have the best variety around and lots of unusual fruits you won't find at Whole Foods (worth the trip). They also have great map of other places to visit while down here so it's fun to make a day of it. Not on the map and a great visit is Everglades Outpost about a mile on the left past Robert's. They have LOTS of exotic animals that lost their homes (i.e illegally owned) and are now at the Outpost. On the last visit I saw giraffe, bear, wolf, monkey, snakes, tigers, birds and more. Glaser Farms in Coconut Grove is a Saturday market and has mostly organic and some local.
Send your questions to food critic Lee Klein.