Saturday, July 14, 2012

Feasts & Affairs | Super(Duper)Market

After first hearing about Super(Duper)Market (i.e., Paper magazine's "three-day pop-up super-store featuring its favorite vendors, retailers, and food fanatics from East Coast to West Coast selling their goods under one roof" over at Chelsea Market) from Linda and later from Alice suggesting I should check it out as it'd make some interesting blog fodder, I knew I had to get my butt over there to see what was up. Linda and I are always talking about how much we love San Francisco and the Bay Area for its amazing culinary scene, filled with so many talented artisans and incredibly fresh markets/ingredients available there, so you can imagine our excitement when we so the roster of West Coast vendors -- Tartine Bakery and Humphry Slocombe among them. There were also a ton of local vendors that I was looking forward to checking out as well, so I knew I had a fun-filled afternoon ahead of me this weekend.

Marcus and I arrived to Chelsea Market, only to find out the entrance was on the northern part of Chelsea Market, on 16th Street, not through the 9th Avenue entrance, so we had to loop back out and over.

Once we finally made it, there were throngs of people entering and exiting, so we braced ourselves.

It felt like a college career fair, but instead of the warehouse space being filled with résumés and conversations about available positions and company cultures, it was filled with the lively chatter of food enthusiasts of all sorts and tastings running the gamut of beverages, desserts, and artisan goods. It was every foodie's proverbial candy shop. We were ready for some serious foodplay.

Glimpses into my day at the Super(Duper)Market: {1} banner on the space's windows inside Chelsea Market / {2} Tartine Bakery's stand, offering simple pastries, tote bags, and its cookbooks for sale / {3} the flavors of popsicles at La Newyorkina's booth / {4} view of the Super(Duper)Market from the entrance / {5} Brooklyn salt water taffy packages from The Salty Road / {6} Chelsea Market signage / {7} scoops from Humphy Slocombe Ice Cream: Jesus Juice (sorbet of Coca-Cola and red wine) and Blue Bottle Vietnamese coffee / {8} cold Chinese noodles with sesame sauce and scallions (and not pictured: cold Chinese noodles with four-hour braised pork meat sauce, scallions, and cucumber) from Shorty Tang & Sons / {9} Shorty Tang & Sons mixing the cold noodles in a large wooden tub / {10} booth of Ovenly from Greenpoint, Brooklyn / {11} the communal dining area at the back of the Super(Duper)Market

Findings: I had a great time at the Super(Duper)Market on Saturday. I got to see and taste so many vendors that I would have normally never come across otherwise, so it was great to be able to discover new artisanal shops like the ones participating at the Super(Duper)Market. Given that this was the event's first ever run, I was quite impressed with the general set-up and how most things were running smoothly, especially since they made it very accessible for people to use credit cards in case cash wasn't readily available (thanks to sponsor/iPhone application, Square). As for the food we had, Marcus and I each had some amazing noodles from Shorty Tang & Sons (can't wait to check them out again at Smorgasburg in Brooklyn!) as well as some unconventional scoops of delicious frozen goodness from San Francisco's Humphry Slocombe Ice Cream.

However, if they decide to run this even next year (I really hope they do!), I would love to see the size of the market to grow. After all, when I heard its name for the first time (i.e., Super(Duper)), I was expecting more than twice the vendors that were there. I also felt that the West Coast wasn't as equally rerpesented in the roster line-up -- it would be so awesome if they could round-up more vendors next year, so that New Yorkers can get a bigger taste/glimpse into the West Coast's gourmet scene as well. I understand that it's hard for these vendors to travel so far with their goodies, but I'm sure many can make it all work! :)

Sad to see the Super(Duper)Market go so soon, but looking forward to its possible return in coming years -- hope it was a smashing success as they had hoped it would be! Make a visit out there before they're done for the day on Sunday at 4 PM!

Price point: free to attend, $6-7 for each bowl of Shorty Tang & Sons noodles, $4 for each scoop of Humphry Slocombe Ice Cream.

--July 14, 2012

Chelsea Market
410 West 16th Street
New York, NY 10011
open from July 13 through July 15, beginning at 11 AM to 4/6 PM
sponsored by Paper magazine and Target

Shorty Tang & Sons
for locations, check Facebook

Humphry Slocombe
2790 Harrison Street
San Francisco, CA 94110

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