Tim Morris tells why Adelaide’s Central Market is his favourite place in Australia, and The Place to go next time you visit the South Australian capital.
They say that home is where the heart is. They also say the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Well, I say that I am home (and in love) when in Adelaide’s Central Market.
The Central Market, in the heart of Adelaide’s CBD, is one of the city’s great iconic treasures. It is one of the best fresh-produce markets in Australia. With the added convenience of its central location and the fact that it trades six days a week, the Central Market is food lovers’ heaven.
You may think it strange that I write about a food market as being my favourite place in Australia. Why would I, when there are beautiful tropical island escapes, exciting action-packed outback adventures, or picturesque mountain getaways to be had? But if you think about it, those are all very well and good, but at the end of the day they cannot offer what the Central Market does.
Pretty much the whole world is available on a plate here, and it’s all under one roof. You don’t have to travel to distant corners of the globe to experience a diverse range of cultures and tastes. It’s all right there in the Central Market.
While it is nice to experience exotic locations, the buzz of a good holiday unfortunately can never last. However, the Central Market is always there, ready to absorb you into a gourmet paradise, even if only for an hour or two. It provides an escape from the busy bustle of city life, and a refuge for the hungry, where you can let your tastebuds run wild.
This is what I love most about the Central Market, and what makes it my favourite place in Australia – it provides the possibility for a food lover like myself to indulge my desires on any given week. No purchasing of plane tickets or booking of accommodation is required. The Central Market is right there for me whenever I want.
Mind you, if I wasn’t a local I definitely would suggest a visit to the Market next time you’re in Adelaide. Picture this: over 80 food stalls selling everything from fresh fruit and vegetables to fabulous seafood, award-winning smallgoods, top quality meats, artisan breads, the best cheeses from around the world and an array of specialty goods. There are health food shops, organic shops, herb shops, spice shops, eastern European delicatessens, Asian grocers and more.
The Central Market precinct and adjoining China Town also house a smorgasbord of fantastic eateries that are equally diverse. Obviously everything Asian is catered for – there’s Chinese, Vietnamese, Thai, Malaysian, Japanese, Korean and more.
Then there are a host of cafes offering some of the best coffee in Adelaide, as well as the city’s oldest pizza bar, Lucia’s. This retro-style café was the first to serve pizza in Adelaide back in 1957. Since then it has become an Adelaide institution, with queues for tables not an uncommon sight on Friday evenings.
A little more unusual is Taldy-Kurgan, an eastern European café specialising in pirozhki – the deep fried, meat-filled Russian doughnuts that are a heart-attack-inducing (not really!) morsel of utter deliciousness.
Whether it’s shopping up a storm or grabbing a tasty snack, the Central Market provides everything one could possibly need. I rely on it weekly to stock my larder and appease my cravings, and for that it wins my vote.
Adelaide Central Market is on Gouger St, Adelaide. (08) 8203 7203, www.adelaidecentralmarket.com.au
Tim Morris wrote this story as part of Australian Traveller’s Virtual Intern Program, which provides a forum for budding writers and photographers to have their work published on the Australian Traveller website. For more information, click here