Five Cool Finds That Make Waking Up Early And Going To White Rock Local Market Totally Worth It.
If you're anything like me, your Saturday mornings are precious to you. They're there for a reason — to recover from the night before — and for the most part they're best spent curled up in bed. Or so I've always felt.
But the expansion of pop-up independent local markets around town are making lazy Saturday mornings less and less of a given these days. Getting your pick of some of the freshest goods available from local farmers and artisan vendors? Yeah, that more than merits an earlier out-of-bed time.
And the White Rock Local Market, where everything is locally grown and produced? It might be the best of the bunch.
A non-profit, healthy and local alternative to regular grocery store shopping, you can find a rotating selection of fresh produce, specialty foods and hand-crafted goods here every Saturday from March through the beginning of December at the Lakeside Baptist Church on the first and third Saturdays of the month and over at the Green Spot on the second and fourth ones. The only catch? It only runs from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., so if you want to get your hands on the best goods, you've got to get to some of these booths early enough to ensure that your targets haven't sold out.
And, trust me, getting there early is indeed worth the effort. You'll find a lot of great things that you just won't see at your neighborhood Kroger.
Here are just a few of our favorite finds from last weekend's shopping.
What they sell: Regional Mexican sauces and marinades
Thing to try: Mexico City sauce.
Finding Mexican food in Dallas isn't exactly a difficult proposition. There are tons of places you can go, regardless of whether you're seeking something cheap and greasy, something high-end and innovative or just something you want to cook for yourself. If you want it, it's readily available one way or another — so long as you're not specific about your regional taste preferences. That's where things become a little dicey. Hence Molli’s whole business model: Owner Rodrigo Salis saw a need to represent the different styles and flavors of Mexican cooking and decided to fill it. “We couldn't find any regional Mexican [cuisine] here, and we're from Mexico,” Molli explains of his family business' earliest ambitions. “We wanted something convenient, natural and tasty. “Living in Dallas, there’s not a lot of regional Mexican food. There's a lot of salsa verde and salsa roja, but there's nothing to cook with, and nothing that goes to the different places and things I was used to eating when I was in Mexico.” Now, though, there is. Molli focuses on southern Mexican flavors and influences with sauces based on recipes from Morelos, Veracruz and Mexico City, and marinades from Oaxaca and Acapulco. All of the products are made at a commercial kitchen in Fort Worth by Salis and his wife, and they can be used to make anything from meat to beans and vegetables. Their efforts are bold and full of complex flavors — ones that go beyond what you’d find at a standard Mexican restaurant. And the best part? Every sauce and marinade is made with all-natural ingredients and no preservatives.
Bisou Bisou Patisserie.
What they sell: French-style pastries.
Thing to try: Raspberry Macaron.
If you're even remotely as obsessed with French macarons as I am, you're going to love Bisou Bisou Patisserie. Their signature macarons come in a variety of flavors, from standard favorites like raspberry and chocolate to more unconventional delights like PB&J and tiramisu. “We spend a lot of time and care making sure that they have a lot of flavor, and that they're the best macarons you can get in Dallas,” says owner Andrea Meyer. “I really feel like our flavor profile is above and beyond anything you can get in town.” Naturally, Bisou Bisou makes more than just macarons;Meyer also sells a variety of French-style pastries, cookies and cakes that are made to order. And she plans to open a brick-and-mortar shop later this year, further spreading the cheer that her delectable macarons bring.
Pop Star Popsicles.
What they sell: All-natural, hand-crafted popsicles
Thing to try: Strawberry lemonade popsicle.
Let's face it: Walking around a farmers market on a Texas summer morning means you're going to get hot and want some type of cold, sweet relief. Pop Star Popsicles has you covered while providing a healthier alternative to the mass-produced stuff. “We try to do things that are more original,” says vendor Jen Yates. “We do original flavors and no artificial ingredients ever.” Pop Star's small-batch popsicles are made with all-natural ingredients, sweetened with organic evaporated cane juice and kept cold with dry ice so that each popsicle is just the perfect temperature when you order it. They're also gluten-free, vegan and actually good for you — well, as far as popsicles go — so they're completely guilt-free. Pop Star tries to carry about five to six rotating flavors per season and, currently, popular flavors include the strawberry lemonade, the coconut lime and a coffee popsicle made with market neighbor Noble Coyote Coffee Roasters. Says Yates with a laugh: “People who are Noble Coyote followers come here and are like 'I've got to try the popsicle!''
Noble Coyote Coffee Roasters.
What they sell: Brewed coffee and locally roasted coffee beans.
Thing to try: Honduran cold press coffee.
What would a Saturday morning be without a cup of coffee? A waste, I say. Which is why the Garland-based Noble Coyote Coffee Roasters provides freshly brewed coffee, along with a selection of coffee beans roasted just miles away, at each and every White Rock Local Market. Although you can find Noble Coyote beans at various locations throughout Dallas, WRLM is one of the only places you can get a cup of their own brewed coffee. You can also get your hands on a cup of their Honduran cold brew, which almost exactly like the one found at LUCK, but without the nitrogenation. “Since the article came out, they've been going through taps of the stuff over there,” says Noble Coyote owner Marta Sprague about the growing popularity of the drink. Better to get your fix here, then.
Luscher’s Post Oak Red Hots.
What they sell: Chicago-style hot dogs.
Thing to try:Post Oak Red Hot (with the works).
Any fans of true Chicago-style hot dogs have probably felt some degree of distress for not being able to get their taste of the Midwest here in Dallas. And, listen, Luscher's Post Oak Red Hots owner Brian Luscher understands your pain. “I'm originally from Chicago,” Luscher says. “So these were originally made to satisfy my hot dog craving.” But Luscher's dogs go above and beyond with their chef-minded take on the classic Chicago-style hot dog. Sausages are made fresh with locally pastured beef and pork. The mustard, pickles and relish are also made from scratch, and anything else that can't be made in-house is locally sourced. The best part? Luscher too has a brick-and-mortar in the works, too. And for those of you out there who can't be bothered to roll out of bed before 1 p.m. on a Saturday, that's great news, indeed.
All photos by Kathy Tran.