Friday, March 2, 2012

Tokyo's March Farmer's Markets

March in Tokyo holds all the promise of spring tucked in and around the bluster of winter winds. Like elsewhere, all four seasons seem to be present this month in bloom, fruit, and vegetable. One of the best ways to savor the last tastes of winter and satisfy the anticipation of spring flavors is a visit to one of the many local farmers markets around the city. There are heaps all month long and often on both Saturday and Sunday. Plenty of opportunity to get out and explore and find a new favorite taste!

Moments of note this month are the double-whammy for Gyre Market, and the Earth Day Market in Kichijojji! So many vegetables, so little time...

Photo Note: Kimiko Matsubara of Cocoi with some of her nifty environmentally friendly cleaning products at the Earth Day Market in January.

Saturday, March 3
11am to 3pm
A once-a-month outreach effort by the students running a neighborhood grocery featuring fruits and vegetables from independent farmers.

Sunday, March 4 and Sunday, March 18
11am to 5pm
A nice sized market held on the terrace just in front of Ebisu Garden Place that will always be special to me for introducing me to dried natto and tea seedpods.

Saturday, March 10 and Sunday, March 11
Saturday, March 24 and Sunday, March 25
A gem of a market hidden away in one of Tokyo's high-end shopping districts offering seasonal favorites in a way that feels homey yet rather boutique-y.
11am to 5pm

Kichijoji Market
A terrific two days of seasonal vegetables, fruits, homemade treats, and even some fun activities for those whipper-snappers!
Saturday, March 17 and Sunday, March 18
10am to 5pm
Map

Earth Day Market - Kichijoji 
A new event with nearly 30 growers and producers offering up useful, tasty, and interesting items for the shoppers delight. Two days (yup, two days!) of opportunity all in beautiful Inokashira Park. Jet lag or no jet lag, I'll be there!
Saturday, March 3 and Sunday, March 4
10am to 4pm (Rain or shine!)
Map
*I remain hopeful that some of our Mitaka growers will move in and strut their stuff.

Sunday, March 25
I could go wax on forever about how great this market is and how important it is for the future of Japanese farming. Instead, I'll just insist that folks go and see for themselves what great things the market and these innovative growers are doing. This month will also feature a great selection of organic wines and some nifty music! 
10am to 4pm, Rain or shine!

Every Saturday and Sunday in March
A massive weekend affair that is great fun and features a variety of fruits and vegetables and prepared products from all over Japan. Plus, the curry I had during my last visit from one of the vendors was plate-licking good. (I refrained, but only just.)
10am to 4pm

Saturday, March 17
A unique event in the heart of the city that a vegetable loving geek like me wouldn't miss for the world. What better way to get the healthy vitamins and minerals you need to sustain an evening of karaoke and izakaya hopping?
8pm - ?

Every Saturday in March
A recent first visit to this market was well worth the trip for the number of organic growers and getting to meet a Tokyo farmer from just down the tracks in Kokobunji.
10am to 2pm

Every Saturday and Sunday in March
Another nice market not far from the sumo stadium in Ryogoku it's worth casing out for the neighborhood as well as the vendors.
11am to 5pm
Map

Yurakucho Farmer's Market
Every Saturday and Sunday in March
Another great market somewhere in size between Kichijoji and the United Nation's University Farmer's Market, it often features from a particular growing region as well as heaps of farmers and producers from nearby Chiba and Saitama, too.
11am to 5pm
Directions: Turn left out of the station and cross the courtyard toward Tokyo Kouku Keitan. Look for the fun under the overhang!

Know of a market? Give me a shout and we'll add it to the list!

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