The Wednesday Market in the town of Ordizia, Basque Country is very well known and it should be as it has been a happening for over 500 years. The market takes over the town plaza centre which is a Roman or Greek looking parthenon type structure that provides good cover in inclement or hotter than hell weather.
The Hounds had visited the market before on a trip 2 years ago but since we were travellers then, not residents, we were limited in our take. Not this time! We had also been forewarned by a Basque fly fishing mate of mine to take ‘pockets full of money’ because, he said, it was a very expensive market. So all the Hounds piled into our 1975 Series III Land Rover (Gertie) and bumped & bounced our way to Ordizia…
This market pretty much ticks all the right boxes – it is authentic (no wholesalers here), it offers a great selection of local produce & products and the prices, to us foreign folk, seem almost cheap compared to our local Hondarribia Farmers Market (which we love BTW).
The cheeses on display provoke a puzzling question about Spanish cheeses – they all seem to be pretty much the same type and/or style. A medium soft cheese with the body or texture of say a Gouda or Gruyere, but there appear to be no soft cheeses like a Brie or any Washed Rind options (e.g., Saint-Nectaire). One local queso, Idiazabal, has achieved a well deserved international reputation & recognition but it is still in the same style – and expensive.
The selection can be overwhelming at times, and every turn of a corner or wander down a new aisle brings yet more temptations…and purchases. We were especially taken with the fresh, foraged mushrooms on offer – a decent selection of types and quite affordable prices. We grabbed a good sized bag of the Ceps for a mere €5 or so…estupendo!
And one of the food items we are really enjoying while we live in the Basque Country of Spain is the vast variety of charcuterie (from chorizo to jamón) we can choose from and this market did not let us down. We are not quite chorizo’d out yet in our first 2 months, but we may be closing in on our ‘peak chorizo experience’!
Oddly enough, the market has only 1 baker & bread stall? Not sure how that happened or why a market this size with so many stalls would only have one bread seller.
And since market shopping on this scale can be tiring, especially with the heat rising & the testing our Spanish language skills to the max, we re-treated to a shady street & procured a bit of refreshment.
So if you happen to find yourself in the Basque Country for whatever reason and you like your food, put the Wednesday Ordizia Market on your to do list!