Cleveland’s West Side Market
On a recent trip to Oberlin, Ohio which is in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by farmland, and about 30 miles southwest of Cleveland, I suggested to my husband and daughter that we visit West Side Market: one of the largest and oldest European-style markets in America.
Located at the corner of West 25th Street and Lorain Avenue in the historic Ohio City neighborhood of Cleveland, West Side Market looks like a train station from afar with the high curved basilica-style ceiling. Close up, the West Side Market is actually two buildings: the original brick building constructed in 1912 and an L-shaped arcade that wraps around the side and the rear of the main building.
West Side Market is not your typical farmer’s market. With more 74 vendors in the original building and 83 in the arcade, shoppers have more than 150 choices to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables, herbs, dairy products, baked goods, pasta, seafood, meat and poultry, flowers, spices, nuts, oils, candy, popcorn, international foods, fresh honey and maple syrup, coffee, tea and more.
Open year-round on Monday and Wednesday (7:00 am – 4:00 pm) and Friday and Saturday (7:00 am – 6:00 pm), the West Side Market is easy to navigate with all the stalls organized in rows. The prices are excellent (and seem to improve late in the day) and the selection is overwhelming (bring a self-push shopping cart because you will succumb to the Costco Syndrome of buying much more than is on your list simply because everything looks so good and is so well priced).