ORGANIC, FRESH AND UNIQUE
These words can sum up our experience going to the Riley Park Farmer Market. As a group of International students who are having the first few experiences with Vancouver and Canada in general, our time at the farmer’s market has been really amazing and relaxing!
To get you guys started with the Riley Park Farmer Market, Yoona will talk about the overall theme of the market!
The farmer’s market theme is one of the most popular food event theme here in Vancouver. It gives us a fresh, organic feeling that our customers thoroughly enjoy. These themes often feature a combination of beautiful wooden carts, blackboard signs and props, and fresh fruits, vegetables and flowers. It invites participants to explore the market environment and interacts with the display. This theme is perfect for all customers planning a natural “taste of Vancouver.”
The Riley Park Peasant market, which was on Saturday between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m., is one of Vancouver’s newest summer market. However, in winter, formerly known as Nat Bailey Winter Farmers Market, it is one of the oldest and largest markets in the region. The market was launched last summer with only about 30 street vendors. In the summer of 2018, the farmer market was opened again in Riley Park
The atmosphere in the farming market of Riley Park was really lively and friendly – a perfect atmosphere to spend and to enjoy with family. There was a man singing to add to the liveliness of the market and there were children and dogs running, playing while enjoying the music. Parents enjoy his singing and relax into the rhythm of the music. On the other side of the market, there were farmers producing, selling and making apple juice with apples grown directly at the market. It can clearly be seen that the farmers were very proud of their fresh and organic products. The market was not so crowded but the appearance of food trucks also add to the market’s atmosphere.
To show us the cleanliness and service factor of the market, this is Thao sharing her thought!
Farmer market and Food truck are sometimes not considered to be a right place for cleanliness. However, when it came to Riley Park Farmer Market, each Food truck was presented nicely with an acceptable level of sanitation. All sauce bottles were placed neatly in a clean counter for the guest to use.
After ordering and grabbing the food, visitors went to a shared table where they could take a sit and enjoy it while listening to a piece of a country song by local vocal of the market on a sunny day. It was such a pleasant experience for some, but because this was entirely an opened space, those who were sensitive to dust or were extremely conscious of cleanliness might feel not so much comfortable.
Due to the nature of the food truck business, all eating activities are by self-service. We have to do all the thing ourselves, from bringing food to the table, getting sauces to cleaning up after finishing it. Although there are not so much to do with the staffs of each food truck, we were impressed by their cheerful attitude. On our arrival at Fried Pan Food truck, we were welcomed by a girl with a lovely smile. She enthusiastically recommended some excellent choice of food for us to make — the way she interacted with guest and explained how the dish tasted aroused us a feeling of interest and willingness to give it a try. That decisive moment of truth did help to make us ignore their 10-minute delay in food delivery after that.
Apart from Food trucks, organizers of the market also set up a buffet line with all products made from apple for guests to try. When heading to this area, once again, we are greeted by some of the hosts with a charming smile on their faces. They walked around, introducing and showing us how to make each dish. All of their gesture and attitude made us feel warmly welcomed here.
Turning to the sustainability and beverage trends, Billy is going to tell you his thought!
As of today, sustainability has been an increasing concerned issue by a lot of viewers. From simple as finding a clean food source to be able to preserve and maintaining the balance of the ecosystem. Because of this reason, every restaurant’s owners always put in mind how they should integrate between profitability and environmental preservation.
At Riley Park Farmer Market, sustainable ingredients play a huge part in the making of all dishes and retail products. For example, using organic or home-grown vegetables and fruit. If you can look closely, the philosophy of sustainability is reflected throughout the marketplace. Even the primary purpose of Riley Park Farmer Market is building local food economies and promoting locally made products. At the Fried Pan food truck, the chickens are 100% free-run fresh chicken, their lemonade is organic home-grown, and all the mayonnaise and ketchup sauce is homemade. Furthermore, all the cheese and tofu used at the food truck are all locally made, not the processed type in the supermarket.
The same use of home-grown and locally produced ingredients is also reflected at the Apple Buffet at Riley Park Farmer Market. We have been shown directly how they manually pressed and made the Apple Juice by hand, and witnessing how all types of apples being grown right at the market. Because of this, the apples used at the buffet are 100% fresh and organic, safer for consumers to eat.
By using sustainable ingredients, they will, on the one hand, attracting more customers and higher the profit. On the other hand, they will contribute to creating a balance and continuous ecosystem.
Not just stopping with the sustainable ingredients, recycling and providing disposable utensils for customer’s use is also a wise and realistic measure against the environmental problems. For instance, Say Hello Sweets – an ice cream food truck at the market, give the customers a wooden spoon to eat the ice cream, instead of going with plastic utensils. The cups holding the ice cream is also made of paper, which is easy to recycle or to dispose.
Integration of modern food and beverage trends
Just until recently, organic and healthy food has been a viral trend around the world. Instead of going out eating fast-food or junk food, people have shifted their choices toward vegetable dishes and organic food. Riley Park Farmer market is a clear representation of that trend, when all of the factors in the market incorporate organic and clean ingredients, healthy meal option. This can be reflected through the retail product of the market, such as fresh vegetables and berries.
Especially at the Apple Buffet, they try to incorporate the use of apple in all of their dishes, provide a variety of selection for consumers. This not only demonstrate their creativity, but it also shows how they’re incorporating fresh and healthy organic ingredients in their dish.
Because of including fresh fruit and organic ingredients into dishes, they contribute to creating a healthy meal and diet for consumers.
Another trend worth mentioning that is included in the farmer’s market is Vegetarian and Veggie option for food and beverage. This is reflected in the dishes available in the farmer market. At the Fried Pan Food Truck, we get the option of meatless hamburger, as well as adding tofu in the Teriyaki instead of beef for the vegetarian option. As a result, they open up for more consumers with different needs and standard, especially for Vegetarians
Talking about the food trucks, they’re also becoming a popular trend among cities around the world. The food truck is not fixed to any location. Therefore they can move and change area as the needs changes and the market develop. The food truck is an operation based on a car, so quite apparent that they don’t have to pay extra for renting the locations and building the infrastructure, by that saving their budget for other expenses. The appearance of food trucks can be seen at Riley Park farmer market, creating a unique way and different approach to the customers.
Food and beverage: taste, quality, value, and presentation
Now, this is Min Jae sharing his thought on the food in the Riley Park Farmer Market
When we order the Chicken burger from Pan fried chicken, it was very tasty. Compared to those in KFC and Mcdonalds, the chicken was crunchier and plentiful. However, it was kinda greasy when I was eating the hamburger. They use the same chicken for Korean fried chicken, in common with the chicken burger, it was greasy compared to other Korean fried chicken and fast food chicken.
Also, there are little bugs on the strawberry which is proved natural. Even though, not much sweet on that strawberry tasted so fresh and sour. Also, It couldn’t be compared to market strawberries!
At the Apple Buffet, they were providing food for free to everyone. Also, everyone can experience how to make apple juice which was so delightful and fun. It tasted so sweet and flavorful. Their natural juice was darker than the usual one. Also, it was less sweet but sourer.
Additionally, they arrange many kinds of apple and let people tried. Orin was round with a yellow-green skin with white lenticels. Also more sour than other apples and a little bit juicy. For the Honey crisp apples, which is the most expensive apples in the species were crispy like their name, also moist and sweet. Braeburn apple was similar to Red Delicious and Honeycrisp. They have crunchy taste as well as Honeycrisp, food texture was even tasted like cinnamon. Red delicious apple was covered by bright red colour skin, and food texture was so crunchy and smooth. All apples were from the farm which is located right next to an arranged table.
They have arranged food which is all made out with apples. Apple pies were filled with boiled and squeezed apples which can taste deeper. They arranged apple jam pizza as well, tasted more cinnamon compare to market jam.
Overall, we had a very wonderful time and experiences seeing the farmer market. The people were so kind and friendly and the atmosphere of the market was really chill and relax. Even though there were some minor flaws with the food, we enjoyed the Apple Buffet with their flavourful and organic home-grown Apples – corporating with the live music
So what are you waiting for? Let’s join the Riley Park Farmer’s Market and experience all the greatness!
Until next time!