Traditionally, the thought of cars and beer doesn't conjure the scene of a local farmers' market, but in the Triangle this month, that's exactly the case.
A fleet of Toyota hybrids will roll in to the Raleigh Downtown Farmers Market (400 block of Fayetteville Street, www.godowntownraleigh.com/farmers-market) July 21 as part of the Toyota Farm to Table Tour (www.farmtotabletour.com). In its second year, Toyota's trek to promote sustainability will feature the Raleigh Downtown Farmers Market on its 11-stop national tour. Nine Raleigh chefs—Jason Smith of 18 Seaboard, Jeremy Clayman of Busy Bee Cafe, Ian Sullivan of Coquette Brasserie, Christi Peddy of Green Planet Catering, Chris Hylton of The Mint, Clifton Vogelsberg of Solas, Meechai Kowae of Spize Cafe, Amy Tornquist of Watts Grocery and Sarig Agasi of Zely & Ritz—will rotate through three free tasting stations from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. and provide bite-sized takes on current market offerings. In addition, Berkshire Bratwurst sausage sandwiches from Coon Rock Farm will be available for purchase. A visit to each tasting station will result in a stamped Toyota "passport" that can be redeemed for a potted herb. Toyota will also offer John Boos cutting boards in exchange for test-driving one of its new hybrids. Local band American Aquarium will play during the event, thanks to the efforts of the Indy's Hopscotch Music Festival curator.
By the end of the month, Durham's Fullsteam brewery (www.fullsteam.ag) will debut growlers (64-ounce glass jugs) of its "plow-to-pint" beers on Wednesdays at the Durham Farmers' Market (501 Foster St., www.durhamfarmersmarket.com) and the Carrboro Farmers' Market (301 W. Main St., www.carrborofarmersmarket.com). Fullsteam has received a great deal of local and national attention for its Southern-style beers, including the Carver, a sweet potato brew that—like many of Fullsteam's offerings—uses a local ingredient, and the Hogwash, a hickory-smoked brown porter created as a pairing for North Carolina barbecue. The two markets will be the first venues where the brewery's beers will be available for purchase. In addition, mid-August will find Fullsteam with a permanent tasting spot at its 726 Rigsbee Ave. location in downtown Durham.
Between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. July 14, drop by 219 Bickett Blvd. in Raleigh for the grand opening of Bickett Market, a farm-direct wholesaler that will provide a marketplace for local and sustainable foods six days a week. Owner Jason Stegall says the new market will emphasize the traceability of all of its products, including a variety of "Animal Welfare Approved" meats. Stegall was inspired to start Bickett Market after meeting with several local farmers and food producers through his other endeavor, Southport Seafood Company (www.southportseafoodcompany.com), a business committed to the sustainability of the fishing industry. Fresh seafood from Southport Seafood Company will be available for purchase at Bickett Market most days, and Stegall plans for a once-a-month sushi night on which a variety of sashimi-grade fish will be for sale. To receive notifications about sushi night or other special offerings, sign up for the Bickett Market listserv at www.bickettmarket.com. There, you can also reserve foods to pick up at the market.