Why Spanish Mercados Are The Greatest Thing Since Sliced Jamón

Nine reasons you should do your shopping at a mercado

1. You’re far more likely to buy healthy stuff.

2. Your impulse purchases are way more interesting.

3. You’ll learn something every time you go.

4. Choice of quality.

5. Choice of quantity.

6. Friendliness.

7. They’re aesthetically awesome.

8. A chance to practice your Spanish.

9. Special orders for whatever you like.

11 essentials for successfully navigating a Spanish mercado

1. Choose your vendors.

2. Know when to stick and when to switch.

3. Explore all your options: each mercado usually has its own speciality stalls.

4. Fear not the embutidos.

5. Be friendly and respectful. Ask for recommendations.

6. Have small bills.

7. Don’t touch anything without asking.

8. El último system: how to know when it’s your turn.

9. Do ask for cooking recommendations, and don’t be surprised if what you already had in mind is weird.

10. Ask for what you’re looking for if you don’t see it. If they don’t sell it, feel free to ask if they can give you any leads.

11. Eggs are not refrigerated and don’t need to be. Also, it’s totally and completely worth buying the good ‘uns.

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Content designer. Sassy futurist. Ukulele plucker. Ottolenghi acolyte.

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Janel Torkington

Janel Torkington

Content designer. Sassy futurist. Ukulele plucker. Ottolenghi acolyte.