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Eat, shop and enjoy at Little Italy Mercato every Saturday, year round, 9 am to 1:30 pm. The Little Italy Mercato is the city market for downtown San Diego residents and visitors with more than 70 booths lining Date Street from Kettner to Union offering farm fresh produce, artisan foods and specialty items.
San Diego has many claims to fame. There’s the sandy coastline lined with ocean waves, talented surfers and endless vitamin D. There are over 100 local craft breweries able to align with all awaiting taste buds. There are more fabulous brunch places than one can fit in a four-day weekend visit and no one does farmers’ markets like America’s finest city. Each day of the week you can wander the streets of one of the many neighborhoods to your heart’s and tummy’s content. The boundless array of tents catches your eye and draws you in. There are stalls for all ages and tastes that reach all clients who stand on both legs and those furry four ones.
Little Italy’s Farmers’ Market is the largest market in downtown San Diego. Every Saturday morning, rain or shine, the streets of Little Italy are flooded with shoppers, strollers, people and puppies. Some have wandered up to get a better look at the aromas wafting through their noses. Others have planned their morning to get the first catch of sea urchin, grab their first cup of joe or cleanse their systems with their favorite green juice. On these streets in Little Italy, the city wakes early. Businesses alongside the market are open. Vendors line the streets with their food, drinks and wares while patrons flock to each stall with wide eyes and open wallets. Cafes and restaurants open their doors to early breakfast and brunch goers as they wander in with tote bags filled with the fresh goodness they picked up and down the street.
No matter when you visit, there’s something to see. The big orange coffee truck greets you as you wander in from the waterside. Nearby Masala Cottage’s Indian food stall is filled with a fragrant feast of samosas, naan and spice-infused everything. Opposite and adjacent, the deliciousness continues. There’s the authentic Italian pizza stall, the fresh cheese gurus, the fruit and veg guys, the honey people and the force behind the flowers. Then come the nut stalls, the green juice fans, the olive oils and the tea fiends. As you continue along filling your tote with organic supplies, your mouth with tastes of each find and your tummies with ounces of yumminess, you learn from the experts, chat with the locals and always come across something new to try. The sea urchin guy always draws a crowd. The green juice stall always has a line which serpentines throughout the market. The jerky stalls always offer a taste of their treats. And someone always passes by with a drink or plate that catches your eye and mystically draws you towards a new adventure.
Located on Little Italy’s West Cedar Street between Kettner Boulevard and Front Street, the award-winning Little Italy Mercato is open every Saturday from 8am till 2pm. Over 175 farmers and vendors set up shop each weekend ready to share their knowledge, sell their creations and spread the joy of the Farmers’ Market existence. Housing California certified farmers and ranchers, supporting small family farms and local entrepreneurs, Little Italy’s Farmers’ Market awaits your arrival. Whether you’re searching for new kitchen items, want to try your hand at new sauces, seasonings or dips, are looking for fresh produce or fish, are hungry for a weekend treat, are in need of fresh bread or a new green creation or are in search of an artisan crafted gift for a friend, it’s here every Saturday ready and waiting to greet you.
Buskers are on the corners sharing their talents and music with all. Visitors come from across the globe to check out this family-friendly entertainment and shop local. San Diegans come from all corners of the county to fill their fridges and souls in this creative, organic and welcoming environment. Kids see first hand what farmers and artisans can create and dogs get treated to their own version of organic goodness. If you have questions along your meandering journey, stop by the market’s ‘Welcome Booth’ where they can handle anything you throw their way.
With over 30 certified produce farmers and ranchers, more than 45 artisan grocery vendors, more than 40 handcrafted goods and gifts and more than 10 prepared food vendors, you have your choice of everything you could imagine every Saturday morning on the streets of San Diego’s Little Italy. While some vendors are showcased here, feel free to check out the Little Italy Farmers’ Market website for more details.
Joe’s on the Nose (coffee truck): Joe’s orange truck first hit the San Diego streets in the spring of 2007. As the first ‘gourmet food truck’ in California, Joe’s on the Nose entices visitors and fills thirsty throats daily. Beginning their journey by serving drinks in sleepy surf spots, today you can find their tasty treats at the Saturday Farmers’ Market. Get there early since their line is often long.
Green Fix™ Smoothies (organic smoothies stall): As you wander the aisles amidst the streets, you’ll see patron after patron with a clear cup filled with a clear straw and bright green drink. This blend of organic fruits and greens and often other add-on ingredients is designed to ‘boost your health’ and fill your tummy. Their fruit-like smoothie is plant based. Extra add-on ingredients are among others – kale, chard or dandelion greens. Check out their menu, choose your flavor, and enhance your nutrition in one quick slurp.
Jerky’s Gourmet (beef jerky stall): From solid strips of steak comes this specialty gourmet beef jerky. Sourced from grass fed cows on a GMO free diet, this jerky draws crowds each weekend. Often the longest line of the jerky providers, Jerky’s Gourmet produces a variety of flavors in a protein packed snack. In its resealable bag of goodness, this low fat, gluten free snack packs a punch. Whether you’re snacking while shopping, packing it for your next outdoor adventure or tasting it for the first time, for all the carnivores out there – this is the stall for you.
Think Positive (shirts/tank tops stall): Reading, learning and wearing positive vibes is the trend of today. This t-shirt vendor creates apparel designs out of positive affirmations and quotes. Their focus is that the words that peak your fancy are the right ones for you, right now. Forming shapes of yoga poses and natural elements, each design has its own individual theme all stemming from an overarching goal of positivity. There’s an owl showcasing his wisdom, an elephant warrior showing her strength and ocean waves that harness power and fluidity. The right clothing and the right mindset are coupled in this positive thought process and provide the ability to add positivity into your day, your life and your outfit.