By Mary Pratt
The Saturday Saratoga Farmers’ Market in the Wilton Mall parking lot is exceptionally busy. In addition to selecting veggies, meat, fruits, and prepared foods, customers can explore vendors offering gifts to purchase.
It’s easy to start the Saturday market with Something’s Brewing coffee. Beth Trattel roasts her coffee beans and sells many varieties of Battenkill Coffee.
Other foodie gifts include packaged cheese. In addition to yogurt, Dave and Marge Randles, Argyle Cheese Farmer, prepares cheese varieties. “Amazing Grace” won a silver medal at the NYS Fair. Lee Hennessy, Moxie Ridge Farm specializes in cheese from his Alpine goats. You can choose fresh cheese such as chevre or feta, or ripened Valencia and Cannonball. R&G Cheesemakers in Troy uses goat’s or cow’s milk from nearby farms. Sean O’Connor continuously creates new flavors to accompany his goat’s milk chevre, Camembert, and cow’s milk cheeses. Nettle Meadow also has a unique variety of hard and soft cheeses and chevre.
Or for a sweet treat, shop Saratoga Chocolate Company founded by Hank and Allison Rose. They use “only the highest quality chocolate and ingredients. Each selection is paired with complementary flavors that highlight the tasting notes of each chocolate”. Marcie Place, The Chocolate Spoon, bakes notable cookies, teacakes, and other treats that come in giftable packaging.
If your friends enjoy sipping, try a variety of sparkling cider from Slyboro Cider House. Dan Wilson is in charge of their “small dynamic farm, cider house, and farmstand in the foothills of the Adirondacks. His orchard, Hicks Orchard, continues a tradition of direct connection with the local community that dates back to 1905”.
When visiting friends who have dogs, be sure to bring gifts from Mugzy’s Barkery, named after their Old English Bulldog. The Barkery specializes in natural and organic dog treats that are “handmade, healthy, safe, and delicious”.
As you explore the Market, you’ll notice several talented crafters, including Balet Flowers and Design. Suzanne Balet Haight, a second-generation Market vendor makes functional, creative pottery, such as coffee cups, bowls and plates, and lovely containers that hold the flowers and plants they grow.
After you leave Balet Flowers, go to Feathered Antler where Gretchen Tisch will create a portrait of your pet from a photo. She illustrates clothing with birds, deer, moose, or their feathers and antlers. “They stand out as being the most stunning parts of animals who wear them from the sky to the ground.”
On her Kokinda Farm, Laurie Kokinda produces vegetables, fruits, jellies, and jams. Equally practical are her sewn products, including aprons and one-piece quilted hot pads. In the future, she’ll bring catnip pillows.
If you’re looking for handmade jewelry, Big Breath Wellness has handmade earrings and pendulums.
Mary Jane Pelzer, Saratoga Suds ‘n’ Stuff, a third-generation soap maker, has been producing a large variety of natural handmade soap in small batches for over 40 years. Look for basic body bars, hand soaps, and soap in special shapes such as lambs, flowers, fish, and eggs.