The Grounds Cayman
For years, “the market” referred to Saturday mornings at The Grounds Cayman in Newlands, a short drive past Countryside if you are coming from town. It used to be that if you weren’t there by 6 am, then you would miss out. To an extent it is still like that, i.e. you may not find that lone oh-so-sweet pineapple, or miss out on the stuff there was only a handful of. As of December 2015, “the market” will be held Monday-Saturday at the new location, near the cricket field. You can find everything from farm fresh produce to natural body products, Caymanite Jewelry, and typical local cuisine. Make sure you get a cup of Cuban Coffee from Plantation Organics’ stand. Baristo Billy will make it as you like.
Nowadays, there is an abundant variety of beautiful produce grown almost year round. The good news is that the farmers in the Cayman Islands have had incredible success with nutrient-dense greens, exotic Asian varieties, tomatoes (typically December–June) and, of course, all of the usual local suspects: pumpkin, callaloo, sweet potato, scotch bonnets, etc. can be found almost year-round. Cayman farmers have also caught on to the increased health awareness of moringa and purslane and have it conveniently available for $2/bundle.
The original Saturday Market is where Britta has established such a long-standing friendship with the farmers. She loves the relaxed atmosphere and mingling with the dedicated crowd of Caymanians that get up early every Saturday and who, like her, have been doing it for years. She fondly remembers the informal education she received from Joel Walton, Patrick Panton, and Mr. Hamlin over the years.
The Grounds Market will be relocated to a dedicated market area closer to George Town. This has been built by the Cricket Pitch, near the airport, across from the Credit Union and Red Cross. Opening day to be announced.
Though it officially opens at noon, you will see locals lined up as early as 10 am when the farmers are setting up. It can be hectic from 10–11 as locals on their early lunch breaks are picking up their weekly shop. Good thing is, this market is always fully stocked and in the perfect setting for a leisurely stroll with plenty of local-supporting restaurants and cafes to choose from.