I must admit I didn’t know about the Pike Market until we arrived in Seattle. We drove right past it and I thought… for the readers, it’s my duty to experience this wonder tomorrow. The next day I arrived around 11:30am. I noticed the large emporium was similar to a European style piazza – with food merchants, sample tasting, cooking demonstrations, musicians – the works!
First stop was the Cherry Stand where I meet Mary, a very energetic knowledgeable smoothie-maker. The organic refreshing beverage was a great start to the day, flavorful and notably fresh… Check out the video.
Next its the lively fish market where the vendors (all male and buff) are tossing fish from a large bucket behind the counter over spectators heads, to another station. What a sight to see! It was so crowded, unfortunately I didn’t get to sample but the smell of the air was as salty as the pacific and that alone satisfied me enough.
I walked around the market for at least 3 hours – passing produce, pickled delights, meats, jams and sweets. What a day! Here are some pictorial highlights of the food and market place.
The market has been in operation for over a century and has lived through many incarnations. I read after my visit a little about the history on the Pike Place Market website: “Between 1906 and 1907, the cost of onions increased tenfold. Outraged citizens, fed up with paying price-gouging middlemen too much for their produce, found a hero in Seattle City Councilman Thomas Revelle. Revelle proposed a public street market that would connect farmers directly with consumers. Customers would “Meet the Producer” directly, a philosophy that is still the foundation of all Pike Place Market businesses.” On August 17, 1907, Pike Place Market was born. According to the website currently there are 200 year-round commercial businesses; 190 crafts people and approximately 100 farmers who rent table space by the day – not to mention 240 street performers.
If you’re visiting Seattle and love food, make this your first stop. The market is called “The Soul of Seattle.” After walking around Pike Place Market all day, I understand why.