Ten essential farmers markets in Melbourne city center

By on October 25, 2022 0

Skip the supermarket this weekend and head to one of Melbourne’s bustling farmers’ markets, which put local growers front and center. Sure, there are seasonal organic fruits and vegetables, but you’ll also find ready-to-eat meats, cheeses and other delicacies from a rotating selection of vendors (follow your local market on social media for a list of sellers). Here are 10 of our favorite downtown markets, open year-round in parks and elementary schools, plus a historic convent and an old gasworks.

Gleadell Street Market, Richmond

Just steps from the corner of Church Street and Bridge Road in Richmond, Gleadell Street becomes its own bustling foodie capital every Saturday. The street is closed for a market of around 20 vendors selling some of the best produce in town (which is not limited to fruits and vegetables). You might find pastries from The French Lettuce, sourdough breads from Thoroughbread, cheese from Blue Bay, and more. Gleadell Street prides itself on its plastic-free philosophy, so be sure to bring a reusable shopping bag to carry your fresh produce home. It is open every Saturday from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Abbotsford Farmers Market

Head to the beautiful grounds of Abbotsford Convent – ​​also home to the Convent Bakery – every Saturday for one of Melbourne’s favorite farmers markets. The nearby Collingwood Children’s Farm has its own stand, as well as stores like Mount Zero Olives and Schulz Organic Dairy. You can also get advice from the children’s farm horticulturist and there are creative workshops and pop-up exhibits – check the market’s Facebook page for announcements.

Gasworks Farmer’s Market, Albert Park

On the grassy grounds of the iconic Gasworks site, a bustling bayside market is held on the third Saturday of the month. The former industrial gasworks is now the site of a vibrant arts center combining theatre, galleries, festivals, events – and a thriving farmers market. The Gasworks Market provides access to neighboring artists’ studios (say hello), while hosting many of Melbourne’s favorite stalls. Past markets have seen over 50 vendors; there was gin and whiskey from the Bellarine Distillery, charcuterie from Gamze Smokehouse and chewy sourdough donuts from Slow Dough.

Cobourg Farmers Market

Also eschewing plastic, the Coburg Farmer’s Market is held every Saturday on the grounds of Coburg Elementary School. Embracing the region’s vibrant community spirit, the market features around 30 stalls – including those selling fresh fruit, vegetables and flowers, as well as coffee, charcuterie and take-out food. Popular vendors such as Milawa Cheese Company and Ket Baker are regulars, but there are plenty of other friendly vendors (and neighborhood dogs) to help get your Saturday started off on the right foot. Moreover, you can meet the friendly resident chickens of the primary school – they live in the “Chicken Wing”.

North Essendon Farmers Market

Just off Buckley Street in Lincoln Park, the North Essendon Farmers Market organizes your weekend outings. On the third Sunday of each month, grab a picnic blanket and set up camp before perusing the offerings. As the vendors spin, you’ll be sure to find an array of homemade baked goods, gourmet pies, fresh juices, smoothies, and top-notch local almond milk. And if there’s one thing you shouldn’t be without, it’s a loaf of brownie banana bread from Brownie Kitchen. Past markets have also seen activities for children such as face painting, as well as yoga classes and live music.

Alphington Farmers Market

Sunday brunch at the market? In Alphington, you can shop alongside your neighbors while enjoying handmade pastries, freshly made chai and local breakfasts. More than 20 stalls fill the grounds of the Melbourne Innovation Center each Sunday, including appearances from Collingwood’s bakery and social enterprise Streat. Plus, stalls selling eggs and meat from free-range hens; olives and oil; honey, nuts and grains; milk and cheeses; and sourdough breads. The Northeast market is also striving to achieve zero waste, implementing the Wash Against Waste initiative where beverages are served in reusable cups to be returned and washed at a car wash. Bottom up.

Boroondara Farmer’s Market, Hawthorn

Another pet-friendly market to add to your list is the Boroondara Farmer’s Market, which is held the first and third Saturday of each month on the Patterson Reservation in Hawthorn. A huge range of stalls can include decadent OMG Donuts, Posh Crumpets or Ocean Grove’s Lard Butter. Seafood stalls with freshly shucked oysters have been a hit in the past, but you’ll also find an abundance of seasonal organic produce, as well as olives, cakes and vino. Expect a park full of friendly locals and humble producers.

Carlton Farmer’s Market

Fresh flowers, dog treats and more can be purchased at the Carlton Farmer’s Market on Sundays at the quaint Carlton North Elementary School. The market may be smaller than some of the others on this list, but it’s packed with local delicacies like Bad Bees honey, Ned’s Bake pastries, Bear Bagels, and baked goods. Plus, visits from ethically raised farm animals. You can even catch a few greyhounds adopted by Gumtree Grays volunteers, who will be happy to answer any questions you have about greyhound adoption. There is also an optional $2 entrance fee (card only), with all proceeds going to help support the school’s programs.

Slow Food Melbourne Farmers Market, West Footscray and Spotswood

Beginning at Abbotsford Convent over a decade ago, the Slow Food Community Market has since made its mark in the mid-west. Now found in both West Footscray and Spotswood, expect up to 50 stalls on the second and fourth Saturdays of each month. Think bread and pastries at Cobb Lane, Colombian street food at Berbeo Bros, and more. The Slow Food mission began as a movement to help restore community spirit to the convent site, and it continues to connect Melburnians through food.

Veg Out Farmers Market, St Kilda

Open for over 14 years, St Kilda’s bustling Veg Out Farmers Market takes place on the first Saturday of every month, next to the community garden, which is a short walk from the beach. You can expect a wide range of local produce from dozens of stalls, which might include pies from Pacdon Park. Have a coffee and a pastry – and there will probably be a sizzle of sausage too. Plus, it’s likely that the person you’re buying from will have helped make, bake, grow, pick, package, or prepare the product you’re going home with.