Montreal’s Jean-Talon Market

Why are public markets so much more fun than a supermarket? The produce is at least a step closer to the farm, I suppose. But more than that, there is a color and bustle, a liveliness, that is infectious.

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In Montreal, we love to visit the Jean-Talon Market, in the Little Italy section on the north side of the city.

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Never mind eating, the colorful produce is a visual feast. How could you look at all those peppers and tomatoes without smiling?

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Jean-Talon is one of Montreal’s oldest public markets, going back to 1933. Generations have grown up buying and selling there.

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Try to find mushrooms like these at a supermarket.

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This little girl looks like she is wondering if these vegetables might taste as good as her popsicle. They do look like as if they could be candy.

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We bought some fresh Quebec strawberries to eat in the car. They were delicious.

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There is music to hear as well as sights to see. These two were playing Andean music. The guy on the right was playing the guitar, pipes, and a drum simultaneously. Quite a virtuoso performance.

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The peches de L’Ontario were also juicy and good.

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Plenty of enticing ready-to-eat food can be found at Jean-Talon. Judy and I bought hot sausages (Croatian, if I remember right) on rolls from this stand. They were spicy and yummy.

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The mix of people is as interesting as the mix of produce.

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Worried about running out of garlic? Fear not.

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Do you have a favorite public or outdoor market?

51 Comments on “Montreal’s Jean-Talon Market”

  1. Looks good! You have reminded me I want to go to the local market again in the next big city to us. It’s twice a week, and worth a drive now and then, with lots of fresh produce, herbs, flowers and plants too. The only negative side is that I always spend a fortune there! πŸ˜‰

  2. What a great market…I couldn’t get over the colours of the peppers, the strawberries (had to put on my glasses to see if they were tomatoes or strawberries) and the garlic! Wow.! I wonder if it is grown around Montreal? I like to know what kind of fertilizer go onto garlic.
    Thanks for that post, very interesting and I’ll pass it on to a few people….Canberra (Australia) where we live …has some great markets too, but this one is hard to beat.

  3. Goodness, that market looks wonderful! Is part of it indoors? It looks as though there is a roof. We have several outdoor farmers’ markets throughout the growing season. For somewhere fairly near at hand, Cincinnati’s Findlay Market is probably most like this one in Montreal. Always a joy to visit.

  4. A feast for the eyes! And you are right. Markets are so much more fun than grocery store. The ambience? The visuals? We have farmers’ markets in Maine, but nothing that comes close to the one you featured on your post.

  5. I love to go to public markets! The French Market in New Orleans is my favorite one. Madison has a famous Farmers Market, but I find it too busy and packed with strollers and pets, with not enough space to walk by. But it’s fun to check it out every once in a while. Looks like the Montreal market was colorful and full of quality produce!

  6. Great post! While I’ve been to Montreal many times I’ve never been to this market. Will definitely be seeking it out next time!

    Glad you tasted the Ontario peaches. We’ve had three baskets this year, which is a lot of peaches for two people, but they were so delicious I couldn’t stop buying them!

  7. Just look at all that produce! How vibrant and enticing! I just love these markets and really dislike supermarkets as everything is so sterile….oh…those mushrooms!!! How I love mushrooms!
    I love “popsicle”, here they are lollyice’s…
    I wouldn’t be buying the foie gras though, it’s been banned in most places in the

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