I hope everyone had a great holiday weekend! The weather was perfect for being outdoors, enjoying one another’s company, and celebrating our food independence by cooking a locally grown feast. This is truly the peak of our growing season, and the harvests this year have been worth celebrating.
Another of my favorite items (I know… I have many favorites) makes an appearance this week, thanks to several farms. Heirloom watermelons, cantaloups, and other melon varieties are something special, and are things you’ll never find at any grocery store. Tasting a vine ripened heirloom melon next to a “regular” melon is much like tasting a vine-ripened heirloom tomato next to a “regular” grocery store tomato. The taste is incredible, complex and sweet, and much more intense than you may expect. But on the other hand, their vines are not nearly as productive, and their rinds tend to me thinner and more fragile. Again much like the modern tomato, the modern melon has been bred for prolific production and good shipping ability, and neither one is conducive to good flavor.
Some of the more rare and hard to grow melons can get a bit expensive, but once you try one it’ll be something you look forward to all year. This week I don’t see any of those expensive luxury melons, but trust me, I’m waiting to buy one when they do arrive. Even if that means my bagged lunches that week are a little plainer than usual.
I also wanted to point out a few “hidden features” of the website this week. I did build in a few things that can be handy sometimes, once you know they are there, but stay out of the way in the meantime.
First, on the “The Market” page, there are some options over on the left hand side, down below the categories. First, if you don’t ever use the “New Products” carousel and just want to get rid of it, you’ll see a link there to hide it. Below that is a link to show your order history. This will show your last ten orders in a section below the New Products and above the regular product listing. Having this section open is a great way to re-order things you liked from recent weeks. If the same items are available in the current week, you’ll see an “add to cart” link right next to them, so you can quickly re-order your favorites. Finally, the last thing on the left is a control to hide & show specific growers. If you’re a vegan and would rather not see the meat & dairy items, you can shut off those growers. If you have only a couple farms you want to order from and don’t want to see anything else, you can shut off all but your favorites.
Also, over on the “Your Account” page, there is some useful information. Of course you can change your account info there, such as your email address or phone number, but you can also see your full order history going back three years now, pull up PDF invoices from any week, and view any account balance adjustments we have made to your account, along with the reason why.
And speaking of account balance adjustments, if there is any reason at all why you may be dissatisfied with anything you receive from any grower at Athens Locally Grown, please let me know. I won’t hesitate to refund your account, and I’ll pass your report back to the grower. Also, if we’ve left anything off your order when we fill it on Thursday, let me know and I’ll refund that. Most everything at market has labels with your names on them, so we spot most problems by the end of the night (there are always a half dozen or so things that didn’t make it to the right person) and I’ll refund those, but some things like the dairy, meat, and bread usually don’t have labels, so when they’re still sitting there at 8pm, I don’t know who they were supposed to go to.
I think that’s enough for one night… time to open the market!
As always, thank you all for your continued support of our local growers and local food. We’ll see you on Thursday from 4:30 to 8pm at the old market on Broad Street!