While New Orleanians and Brazilians have their Mardi Gras, Oaklanders have their farmers markets. We are sick about fresh fruits and vegetables: those strawberries, that giant artichoke, and those Buddha hands. They were probably picked this morning, too, from farms about 60 miles away. Sprinkle into this veg fest rich coffee, baked goods, music and food vendors with ready-to-eat items, and we got ourselves a little bash.


The atmosphere on the old streets of Oakland on Friday afternoon is definitely party-like. And because it's close to Chinatown, many Asian vegetables are displayed, like long beans and lotus root. The Latin American scene is also repped: Get in on the El Porteo empanada action. Roli Roti Chicken Rotisserie is another favorite. (8 a.m. -- 2 p.m.)

Also on Friday:

East Oakland 73rdAvenue & International Boulevard May to November 10AM-2PM Kaiser Hospital 3601 Howe Street 10AM-2PM


Lake Merritt/Grand Lake is a local favorite. The big reason is that, well, its pretty big. It's also ideally located near Oaklands living room (Lake Merritt) at Splash Pad Park. Salume and homemade sausage is available from famed Boccalone. On the flip side, so are the smoked cheddar, bean and yam vegetarian tamales by Donnas; and gluten-free baked goods from Bacano Bakery. Um, yes, to the mojito Cupcake with rum and fresh mint. (9 a.m. 2 p.m.)

Also on Saturday:

North Oakland: Phat Beets 5717 Market Street 10AM-3PM

Oakland Farmers Market Flowers


This farmers markets physical location, on the border of Temescal and Rockridge in the parking lot of a local DMV, is not nearly as important as its metaphysical location: On the corner of Emerging Food Neighborhood between Strollerville and Hipsterville. This is the market for foodies of all ages, from infants to millennials to mothers and real 60s-era hippies. Coffee favorite, Blue Bottle, is waking the masses up. Local chefs and food writers wander its aisles. Cholita Linda and Pot Pie Paradise are favorites, as is Starter Bakery's kouign-amann. Homemade pasta, flowers, and California nuts round it out. (9 a.m. 1 p.m.) Although smaller than Temescals market, the scenery at Jack London Squares Sunday market can't be beaten. It's held with a backdrop of the Bay and the city across the Bay. It opens at 9 am and at 9:30 a yoga session starts--a free one-hour class. But bring a mat or towel. They also have live music late morning into the afternoon. (9 a.m. 2 p.m.)

Also on Sunday:

Fruitvale Village 34thAvenue & E. 12thStreet 10AM-3PM Montclair Village La Salle Avenue & Moraga Avenue 9AM-1PM

During the Week

TUESDAY Fruitvale Village 34th Avenue & E. 12th Street 11AM-7PM North Oakland Childrens Hospital 52nd Street & Martin Luther King 2PM-7PM WEDNESDAY Saint Martin de Porres Community Produce Stand 675 41st Street September to June 2PM-5:30 PM Urban Gardens 5707 Dover Street 3PM-6PM THURSDAY Fruitvale Village 34th Avenue & E. 12th Street 11AM-7PM