Mt. Wellington Market, at 7471 State Highway 80 in Cooperstown, not only sells many locally produced goods, but uses them in its menu as well. The market’s most unique item, and perhaps what really made the community buzz when its doors opened in 2010, is a breakfast sandwich made with a Schneider’s Bakery old-fashioned doughnut. And, this year, locally sourced hot-pepper jelly is adding spice to the ever-evolving menu.
“From the start, we wanted to be a place where customers could purchase the amazing food and handmade gifts our region is known for producing. We started with jelly and granola, but have expanded our selection to now include quite a variety, including maple syrup, BBQ sauces, chocolate-covered bacon and more,” owner Will Gibson said.
Will’s favorite part of selling artisanal foods? “Seeing our customers’ reactions when we let them taste-test the foods we sell. We have some pretty unique items that we sample, like the Road Kill Slather Sauce created by students at SUNY Morrisville. The condiment, a competitor to ketchup, is always a crowd pleaser, despite the funny name.”
Artisanal food is often popular with locavores, those whom have made a commitment to eat locally harvested and produced foods. As such, farmers’ markets, small shops and roadside stands are great places to discover artisanal foods.
So, keep your eyes and taste buds open, and think of the various forms of artistry involved in the product — from the food itself to the packaging. And, don’t always judge a product by its name — Road Kill Slather Sauce is one of Mt. Wellington Market’s most popular items.
June Dzialo is a member of ArtsOtsego, the alliance of Otsego County arts organizations, and marketing director for The Glimmerglass Festival. Column ideas and questions may be sent to email@example.com. For more Around the Arts columns, visit www.thedailystar.com/around