One of the best ways to get to know a spot like Myrtle Beach is through its food. And when that food is the freshest organic produce and delicious meats and dairy, we know we’re in for something special. Myrtle Beach’s weekly Ovis Hill Farmers Market has for the last 12 years been offering residents and visitors alike the pick of the south, which is why we pick it when we want the very best of the season. Selection: “We arguably offer one of the better selections of seasonal organic veggies,” said Charlie Caldwell, the owner of Ovis Hill Farm in Timmonsville and the market’s founder. “We organized a network of farms that work together to do this.” Think hearty, healthy produce; delicious grass-fed and humanely raised beef, chicken and pork; fresh sausages; eggs, cheese and milk. “Our milk is so good,” Caldwell cooed. The selections change weekly as the days warm and new items become available, and while Caldwell’s team lists items in their weekly online newsletter that folks may see at the market, they won’t really know what’s fresh until they pick it. An unusually cold winter has led to a few unexpected setbacks, but also opened the door for new discoveries to emerge. “One farm has cranked up micro greens (production),” Caldwell said, “and they’re absolutely delicious.” Specialties: Do count on the farm stand staples as summer approaches, but Caldwell encourages giving their assortment of USDA-inspected beef and chicken a try. “We now sell a huge amount of meat,” he said. While larger cities might have a retail chain that offers almost exclusively natural and organic foods, Myrtle Beach does not. But that has meant an increased popularity of farmers markets such as this, and has led to great relationships with market-goers. “We have a few customers that have come from the beginning,” Caldwell said, adding that he also sees new customers who hail from all over the country. “They get really excited with what we have.” “That’s one of the best things about it, it draws all kinds of people,” he continued. “It’s people who like good food.” The Ovis Hill Farmers Market is held every Wednesday, rain or shine and year-round, from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Gallery on 8th Avenue, 714 8th Avenue North in Myrtle Beach. Call (843) 992-9447 for more information, or visit http://www.ovishillfarm.com. (posted 3/12/14)
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