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CHARLOTTE MARKETS: THE ORIGINAL SHOPPING SPREE



Written By Holly Blackman


Our Saturday morning family outing to the farmer's market is what I'm looking forward to most about Spring, that and a grand cup of Enderly Coffee. (Since for the last 9 months of pregnancy I've had to refrain, well, mostly!) I can now have both and change up the farmer's market visits, since Enderly is sold at multiple markets!


The Kings Drive Farmer's Market posted my daughter's picture on their Facebook page last year. It was evidence of her devouring a tomato, juices running all down her face, sitting atop my hip as I sorted through the green beans, totally oblivious to the little juicy monster! This market, whose Facebook dons the "that Mom is totally oblivious photo" just opened April 1st, and Enderly may be there sometimes as a pop up market, so check our social media for times. Within walking distance of the Kings Drive Market, literally, down the hill and nestled in the shadow of the Levine Cancer Institute, sits a cottage-like brick building open year-round, full of vibrant produce, local homemade desserts, bags of freshly roasted Enderly Coffee and even a few items from local artisans.


Dale McLaughlin, Rebecca's son, occupies 3/4 of the market and is the third generation to source (from his 5-acre farm) and run this local treasure. Beverly, the fourth generation, runs her own business, a natural extension of the market, Beverly's Gourmet Foods, using produce from the market to provide vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free pre-made and custom dishes for the community. She has over 250 products that can be found in venues like Healthy Home Market (along with Enderly Coffee), Berrybrook Farms and at the market too. She even uses her grandmother's recipe for the Pimento Cheese (so definitely find some; there's nothing like a grandmother's recipe for homemade pimento cheese!)


It feels like a secret, a flashback through time, as you open the door to walk into the Mecklenburg County Market. I decided to grab lunch there a few weeks ago, since it's both ideal and quaint, reminiscent of when all motives were pure and farmers collaborated to feed the community. Little did I know that this market has been around since the 1930s to do just that; it is still run by Pearl Wallace's family. Pearl Wallace's great granddaughter, Beverly McLaughlin, shared with me all about her family's legacy. In the 1930s, Ms. Wallace, along with the other ladies of the Mecklenburg County Home Extension Club, founded the market and set up a whopping 4 feet for each woman (sorry, fellas!) to sell what they grew, all local, fresh and probably organic by our standards today. Beverly's grandmother,  Rebecca McLaughlin, earned her living from the market as well and taught Beverly how to cook.


Like the McLaughlin's, at Enderly we value fresh, local and family, which are the pillars of these markets. Kudos to Charlotte's preservation and support of this traditional venue in the Myers Park, Eastover neighborhood, and Mecklenburg County Market for supporting local by carrying Enderly Coffee year-round! Dale also brings his Enderly Coffee beans to sell at the Charlotte Regional Farmer's Market.  A little further north, you can also find Enderly Coffee beans at the Peachtree Market in Concord, another grassroots, family-owned local market, a newbie on the market scene nestled in the Old Creamery building in Concord, AND open seven days a week! I anticipate the grandchildren of Aaron and Jennifer Newton (those who run the market), telling stories (much as Beverly did to me) years from now about Peachtree and the Peachtree 2Go Produce Delivery Service they started a little over a year ago. They deliver meats, milk, cheeses, honey and more in and around the Charlotte area because they believe in their mission - to provide local meat/produce to families looking to not only eat local but to keep supporting the local farmers and stimulating the growth of the local economy.


Enderly also believes in supporting local and values these market partnerships. We're proud to partner with these markets and to do pop-ups at the market on Kings Drive.


The Newton's two girls know their family does not eat meat unless they know the first name of the farmer who raised the animal (not a bad principle to live by), and the girls love to call Jennifer out on how their ketchup is not locally sourced :)... a fun dinner time game! Tony and Becky's girls, just may be this way about their coffee beans one day! If you're interested in knowing more about where our beans come from, check out the link.


Come by a market near you, grab a bag of beans and watch your children because they just may end up on social media as evidence that you were overexcited about the beans rather than watching your own progeny! See you at the market real soon!


Enderly will also be setting up at Sustainable Saturday in the Barn behind Pure Pizza nearly every Saturday through Christmas.  More to come in a separate blog post!

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