On Sunday morning at the Windsor Farmers Market the air was bright, crisp and fresh, scrubbed clean by Saturday storm. Big gaps between some stalls suggested that certain vendors may have been deterred by the rains but those farmers who did attend had bountiful and diverse harvests.
The main corridor of the market runs parallel to the Town Greene’s east side. Here, there are two rows, one of produce vendors and one featuring, primarily, craft vendors. Enter the market from this side and you’re greeted by several tables filled with Soda Rock Farm’s extraordinary tomatoes and
peppers, in every color possible, from pale yellow to deep purple and every shade of green. The farm still has lemon cucumbers and fresh herbs, too.
There is still plenty of late summer crops here, including a surprising number of melons. Russian River Valley Produce has watermelons, banana melons and several other types of muskmelons, the last of their tomatoes, pineapple guavas, figs, zinnias and a diverse selection of chiles. The farm is also harvesting beautiful pomegranates, some with their stems intact.
Let’s Go Farm, operated by the young and passionate Joey Smith, has big watermelons, big zucchini, little pumpkins, Delicata squash, acorn squash, butternut squash, Italian parsley, lots of greens, carrots, white, lavender and purple eggplant and a big selection of chiles and peppers.
Ortiz Farm is one of the bigger vendors here, with several types of summer squash, tomatoes, tomatillos, radishes, potatoes, yellow onions, red onions, zucchini blossoms, carrots, potatoes, cabbage, poblanos, Anaheim chiles, jalapenos and other hot chiles, broccoli, green onions, Italian parsley, cilantro, yellow wax beans, green cucumbers, beets, lovely wreaths and gorgeous bouquets.
Another vendor, whose name I was unable to get, has a beautifully organized booth with bouquets of zinnias and dahlias, black and white figs, cherry tomatoes, slicing tomatoes, freshly cut rhubarb, winter squash and more.
Krout’s Sunset Ranch has several varieties of squash and chiles, along with a fiery and delicious gypsy pepper jelly. A mushroom vendor has huge portobello mushrooms and small white mushrooms. The delightful Cackleberries & Hen Fruit Headquarters has excellent eggs, a few condiments and a few crocheted items, including colorful cupcakes.
Min-Hee Hill Garden and Nursery has a huge stall, with everything from big heads of butter lettuce to beautiful irises that bloom twice a year. The Sebastopol farm has other varieties of lettuce, as well, along with carrots, fresh lima beans in the pod and shelled, lemon cucumbers, summer squash, beets, chiles and peppers and some of the last Armenian cucumbers of the season.
Hector Alvarez’s Sonoma County Honey has a stall in Windsor and it includes beeswax candles and a small selection of produce in addition to honey, honeycomb and other honey products. Several vendors have local apples just off the tree. Most are unsprayed and free of pesticides and there are several varieties. One vendor has table grapes and another a big selection of dried fruit, including delicious dried white peaches.
Victorian Farmstead of Sebastopol sells its grass-fed meat and poultry here. Santa Rosa Seafood sells here, too, with a booth quite a bit smaller than the one they operate at the Santa Rosa Farmers Market on Saturday.
Spring Hill Jersey Cheese has its large selection of cheeses and estate butter.
Bodega Bay Leaf Co. has a wonderful collection of succulents.
Kimberly Cook-Fallon’s display of spices and spice blends is looking beautiful these days, as Kimberly focuses on holiday packaging. She’s introducing new products, too, including Persian Lamb Rub with mint, rose petals, cumin, garlic, black pepper and cardamom and Lucky Duck, with orange peel, black pepper and fennel.
This market hosts quite a few prepared foods vendors, as all markets do these days. Panorama Bakery, which was founded in Petaluma but moved to San Francisco several years ago, has a huge selection of baked goods, from butter croissants, apple turnovers and brioche tarts to focaccia, baguettes, chocolate cake, pumpkin cake, wholewheat breads and sweet and sourdough breads.
Linda Cerda-Scheibal sells her handmade pasta, Pasta Poetry, here; it is a beautiful and delicate product, available in several shapes and flavors, all made with actual foods, not chemical flavorings. She and her sister Lorol Cerda-Allegra also sell their homemade biscotti.
The Hummus Guy is here, as is Mustard Seed Farms. Tres Classique sells a variety of olive oils, vinegars and vinaigrettes. Alice Lukins of Cloverdale sells her tangy tomato salsa, which is quite good and received a gold medal at this year’s Harvest Fair.
“Cookie . . . take a bite,” Tracy Mattson’s cookie company, has a stall and offers tastes of handmade cookies; they sell for $7.50 a dozen.
There are several jewelry vendors at the Windsor Market, including Anne Marie’s Willow Design, which has adorable vases made of antique flatware, along with pretty bracelets made from silver spoons and such pounded flat. There’s a vendor of photo cards and a vendor of wreathes and sachets.
When it comes to foods to enjoy on the spot, New Orleans Style Beignets has a booth for its nearly irresistible beignets. Charlie’s BBQ offers soups, sandwiches, fajitas and surprisingly good hot dogs.
The Windsor Certified Farmers Market takes place at the Windsor Town Greene on Sundays from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., rain or shine, through December 18, when it closes for the season. Glenda Castelli is the manager.