*Montevarchi Farmers’ Market
This is the sign for the Farmers’ Market
Address: piazza dell’Antica Gora, Montevarchi
open Monday through Saturday : 9-13 & 16-20.30
For centuries, Montevarchi has been a center for the retailing and distribution of high-quality products from the Valdarno, the Chianti and the Pratomagno: free range chickens and rabbits, artichokes and golden zolfini beans, stone-pressed olive oil and chestnuts. Known in the past as the “meat” of the poor, the chestnuts from the Valdarno are now a delicacy: roasted or make into the traditional castagnaccio flatcake.
As of 2005, a permanent covered market has been established in a small square which was once site of a flour mill. The “MERCATALE” sells local produce, heritage vegetables and cereals, local cheeses, crusty bread, cured ham from the Pratomagno and salami from the Valdarno, a wide selection of fine wines (and almost as much of a selection of extra-virgin olive oil) in addition to a myriad of seasonal products (fruit, jams, etc.) , all strictly local. This should be a first stop when grocery shopping in Montevarchi, on a par with the weekly markets in all the local towns which also offer a wonderful choice of garden produce, cured meats and local sheep cheese.
In collaboration with this permanent retail operation, a much larger, monthly market takes place in Montevarchi for the sale of local specialties (from honey to pecorino cheese to boar sausage) directly by the producers themselves at stands set up in the main square, in front of the Church of San Lorenzo (the proud possessor of an unusual relic: a few drops of the Virgin’s breast milk). At this market you can speak directly with the producers of these products, taste the uncanny differences in the honey , cheese and cured ham hailing from different parts of Tuscany.