Cincinnati – Findlay Market

Cincinnati’s Findlay Market is a diamond in the rough of the downtown Over the Rhine neighborhood and has been listed on the National Register of Historic Places since 1972.  While the neighborhood has had its share of issues over the years it’s slowly rebuilding itself and its image.

Findlay Market is the oldest continuously operating farmers’ market in Ohio and its one of the best ones I have had the fortune of visiting.  With specialty shops throughout the market you are sure to find just about any ingredient you are looking for.  One of the neat things about Findlay Market is it’s mix of permanent storefronts and indoor stalls as well as it’s ever changing outdoor farmers marker and open air bazaar.

The Market’s patrons are as varied as the products for sale.  All walk of life from rich to poor, and young to old are shopping at the market.  It’s a great place to people watch as well as learn about other cultures.  Everyone is there for the same purpose and it’s one of those times where people can gather, talk, and have fun.

Some of the specialty shops I like to visit at the market are:

Silverglade’s: Where a Deli employee works with you throughout your transaction and gives all the free samples you want.

J. E. Gibbs Cheese: This place has just about every kind of fresh sausage you might want like traditional brats and chicken sausage.

Busch’s Country Corner: This place gives a new meaning to “fresh” poultry.  While it’s not still breathing it’s about as close as you can get and, according to their stall description, their meat is never frozen.

Taste of Belgium: This is where I had my first Liege Belgian Waffles that were so good I purchased a waffle maker (and the special pearl sugar)  just so I could make them at home.

Markets like Findlay were once a lot more common than they are today.  With the recent foodie revolution and the increased interest that people are taking in learning about their food it would be great to see something like this come to Indianapolis.  The downtown City Market is trying to get there but I just don’t see it ever getting to a fraction of the size of Findlay.

If you’re ever in the downtown Cincinnati area and have a few hours to kill, I can’t recommend Findlay Market enough.  Be sure to bring a cooler as you probably won’t be leaving empty handed.

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