The Westin hosts a quarterly event in the city called “Pune Farmer’s Market”, an initiative by Karen Anand. The market was open on Jan 13, 2014 at Westin just overlooking the river.
After my first visit to Farmers Market last year, I started religiously reading her column in Times Of India and started buying BBC’s Good-food magazine just to read her food critic’s. If you haven’t been to farmer’s market, I highly recommend visiting. Moreover, I would say if you are a food lover or explorer this place will be complete heaven on earth.
This market offered organic fruits, vegetables, herbs, flowers from small regional farmers. A wealth of other products included international specialties such as breads, cheeses, wine, coffee etc. This Sunday market did feature an array of street food like various skewers, grilled meats, satays of all kinds etc.
We started off with milk tasting at “Pride Of Cows” who claimed that their milk isn’t available just off-the-shelf but it is pasteurized, bottled, and hand delivered directly to your home every morning to ensure that it is fresh, pure and delightful. To know more or register for monthly supply of milk, visit: http://www.prideofcows.com/
Next we visited, “La Bouchee d’ Or” a patisserie with exotic spread of macaroons, quiches and bakery items. Situated nearby from home, this place will be a must try soon. Here is a link to their website: http://www.laboucheedor.com
It was followed by “Frozone” a local frozen food chain who can delivers any kind of meat in a jiffy. We got some “Basa” fish to prepare thai crusted basa fillets that we were wanting to try from sometime..Frozone is a leading online store to buy premium quality frozen food in Mumbai and now can be ordered online from Pune too. Visit them at: http://frozone.in
Next was a beautiful shop called “Shristi” a pottery. They have taken an initiative to introduce us to the magical effects of clay.We bought some beautiful hand crafted earthenware.Visit them at: http://www.shristipottery.in/
“Weber” a well know barbecue brand severed us with a bear-can-grilled chicken and 10% discount on the grilles. This grilled dish will be a must try soon.
Two most intelligent shops of all that caught my attention were “Meal Tango” which is a worldwide community that connects friendly hosts with people who are keen to experience local or international cuisine. They claimed that one can have in-home experience of dining world-wide cuisine in 10 different countries. All you need to do it register with them as a host or guest. We did register ourselves as both and are expecting a call next week to join a dinner extravaganza. To learn or register, visit: http://mealtango.com/
On the other hand, “Gourmet It Up” partners with the best restaurants in Pune to bring you unique and exclusive dining experiences. All you need to do is become a member online and start the journey. To learn or register more, visit: http://gourmetitup.com
The most flavorful full of all was “The Indian Bean.com” who were a bunch of coffee nerds. They brewed coffee in front of us in the most intricate and beautiful way that I have ever known. See, the process in the picture below:
The beans were shipped from down south and this coffee comes in three flavors – Strong, Citrusy, and Spicy. We tried the citrusy flavor called “Watapi“and it made us feel like floating in heaven.
After visiting all these shops, I even had a chance to indulge in a lovely foot massage which I think is a smartest addition because it is perfect for shoppers who are tired and want a quick foot rub before they head back to more shopping and eating!
This was followed by Chardonnay tasting at “Chandon“, a well known brand launched by a french man in India. This sparkling wine is completely made in India to seek and capture a young, urban and increasingly sophisticated market of drinkers on the subcontinent.
We really like it much despite its bitterness but we got our heart stuck on a dessert wine that was full of floral sweet fragrance and taste.
Hats off to Karen and her crew of devoted professionals for bringing such an exceptional experience and platform for all of us which had cultural and international exposure. I wish everyone could visit this market and enjoy the variety that life has to offer than having a mundane day-to-day experiences.