Kitchen Tips

Foodie destination: Matakana Village Farmers' Market

Take yourself on a Saturday morning city escape to the Matakana Village Farmers’ Market, and discover a foodie’s heaven of fresh, sustainable and delicious artisan goods.

By Harriet Keown
Located just an hour out of Auckland, the Matakana Market is a weekend must-do. Here you will find a magical combination of fresh produce, high-quality cuisine and local music, creating a vibrant atmosphere right beside the river. This foodie destination is the perfect excuse to leave the hustle and bustle of the city and transport yourself to the relaxed surroundings of Matakana.
Once a 'blink-and-you'll-miss-it' kind of spot, Matakana was transformed in 2002 by locals Christine and Richard Didsbury, who purchased the rural service town's old timber yard to form the beginnings of a destination village, embodying the heart of the Matakana Coast. Alongside local permaculture pioneers and zero waste legends, Joe Polaisher and Trish Allen of Rainbow Valley Farm, a vision was created for a marketplace where the natural, creative and entrepreneurial spirit of the region could thrive. In 2004, that dream became reality, with the first Matakana Village Farmers' Market forming a place where producers, locals and visitors could come together over the promise of delicious food and a dynamic setting.
Present market manager, Fiona McGeough, says that same vision is still upheld today, with stallholders being a carefully-curated selection to ensure the market's philosophy of fresh, local and authentic. The market proudly became zero waste in 2017, and visitors to the market are often found to be as passionate about this sustainable stance as the market organisers and stallholders themselves.
As for the ever-growing popularity of the market, McGeough puts it down to the stallholders being a group of "very forward-thinking, passionate people creating with love." And when they are providing market-goers with such deliciously innovative food week in, week out, you can't really argue with that.
Read on to discover our current favourite market stalls, as well as a Q&A with Delwyn Ward of Daily Organics.
Every girl and her dog can enjoy the relaxed vibes of Matakana Village Famers' Market

Stall Owner Q&A | Delwyn Ward, Daily Organics

Daily Organics is based in the countryside of Matakana, producing premium certified organic traditional kombucha and old world apple cider vinegar.
Q. What is the most enjoyable part of being a stallholder at the Matakana Markets?
A. There are so many best parts. The local market community have supported us from the very start which has been fantastic, and over the 12 years of having a stall we have made some wonderful friends that we wouldn't have meet otherwise, both stallholders and customers. We have even stayed with one customer in her home in Las Vegas, who resides both there and in Leigh.
Q. How has the Market helped your business?
A. It has been a great testing ground from the beginning for new flavours, as we are able to receive direct feedback right there on the spot and make changes swiftly.
Q. What aspect of your product are you most proud of?
A. We are very proud to have been Bio Gro Organic Certified from day one and to be brewing and creating our products right in the heart of the Matakana Village, employing locals who all live close by. Our Bio Gro auditor was able to ride his bike to our yearly audit which was sustainability plus!
Q. How has the Matakana area influenced your product?
A. The Matakana area has been so beneficial to the wellbeing of Daily Organics as we can work close to home surrounded by beautiful beaches and countryside. Having access to local artesian water is invaluable to our products which means we don't have to brew with Auckland town supply water like many of our competitors.
Daily Organics organic traditional kombucha.

Food to Love Favourite | Bite Me Food Truck

Get your weekly dumpling fix from Bite Me Food Truck, which holds a regular stall at the market to bless our taste buds with little pockets of deliciousness. Made on the spot with local ingredients and a whole lot of passion, you won't be able to walk past without grabbing a few dumplings to see what the fuss is about.
Bite Me Food Truck's delectable dumplings.

Food to Love Favourite | Ringawera Baker

To experience that lovely nostalgia that comes from the smell and taste of freshly baked bread, Ringawera Baker should be at the top of your list. Devoted to making high-quality bread using artisan methods, it's a safe bet that a hand crafted loaf from Ringawera Baker will upstage your usual morning toast.
Freshly baked bread from Ringawera Baker.

Food to Love Favourite | Go Raw

Brightly coloured and packed full of organic local produce, a smoothie from Go Raw is undoubtedly the healthiest way to fuel your morning at the Matakana Market. Plus, they're served in compostable cups with compostable straws, so it's a win for the environment as well as your body!
Go Raw's line up of vibrant smoothies.

Food to Love Favourite | Lothlorien Winery

What better way to celebrate the feijoa season than with a bottle of Lothlorien Winery's feijoa wine? Producing the only certified organic feijoa wine in New Zealand (maybe even the world), as well as fresh and delicious fruit juices, the Lothlorien stall is the best place to turn your Saturday morning market run into a long and leisurely afternoon.
Lothlorien Winery's organically grown pure fruit juice.
Visit the Matakana Village Farmers' Market:
Every Saturday 8am to 1pm, in the Market Square, Matakana Village. See the Matakana Market website for more information. Don't forget your reusable bags!