English Guide to Salento, Colombia

Fresh Fruits and Veggies Shopping

Fresh Fruits and Veggies Shopping

Posted on 25-Mar-2017 in Eat & Drink, Practicalities |

Fresh Fruits and Veggies Shopping

If you’re staying in Salento longer than just a few nights, chances are you’ll want to purchase some fresh fruits and veggies. The local mini-market in the square has a few items in the back by the meats, but they’re not the best quality or selection in my judgement.

Unfortunately, I haven’t yet seen a typical “farmers market” with individual stalls here in Salento. But there are three small produce shops where you’ll find the best selection in town, and hopefully whatever you are looking for.

Pancho’s

Pancho’s is by far my favorite of the 3 shops. It has better selection, the produce seems fresher, and the shop is always clean and tidy. The folks that run the place are very friendly too.

It’s located only 1½ blocks from the main square. Leaving the square, start walking along the main street (called Calle Real with a street sign of Carrera 6) lined with all the tourist shops. Walk just 1 block and turn right on Calle 4. Go ½ block and you’ll see Pancho’s market on your right, #6-38 above the doorway.

Look in the Refrigerator!

In Pancho’s you’ll see a large household type refrigerator at one end of the shop. It’s OK to open it, look inside, and make your selections. (This is also done in the other fruit & veggie shops.) Here you’ll find mushrooms, different types of leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, grapes, etc. They don’t keep the more perishable stuff out in the warm air with the potatoes, onions, and harder fruits since it would all go bad way too fast.

Don’t be too shocked if the broccoli is sadly limp and the cauliflower has lots of brown spots, this is typical of the shops up here. And although I consider Pancho’s the best it still isn’t up to the freshness level that I enjoyed back in the states. If it’s too far gone for my sensibilities, I simply wait another day or two and return. Hopefully they’ve received a fresh delivery.

Micky Mouse Shop

No, that’s not it’s real name, but there’s a larger than life Mickey Mouse painted on one outside wall.  It’s meant to advertise the shop next door, but it makes a good landmark. The shop is located on the corner of Calle 5 and Carrera 5, just 1 block from the main square. If you’re at the square, walk past Donde Laurita (the best Limonada de Coco that I wrote about), and you’ll see the produce shop on the very next corner.

Pay attention to the “Don’t touch the fruits” signs posted. I like this pic of their “guard” cat watching me carefully!

Red Door Shop

Again, I don’t know what this place is really called so I made something up. If you’re standing at the corner of Calle 5 and Carrera 5 (described above), just keep walking on Calle 5, away from the square. Just a few doors further along on your left you’ll find another fruit & veggie shop. The number above the large reddish doors is #4-42.

Try All Three Shops

I love the fact that all three shops are so close to each other. I often visit all three in just one outing. If I am not happy with the freshness of some item at one shop (or they’re completely out), I check the other shops to see what they’ve got available.

I admit I haven’t figured out the open-hours for these places, and don’t know that they really have standard hours as such. But if I go during the day, I’m pretty likely to find them open. Even into the early evening. I’ve been luckier with Pancho’s, finding it open even when the other two shops were closed.

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