Artisanal Beer + Cheese + Chocolate = Choco Nino

If there’s one thing y’all know about Mark and me, it’s that we love a good market. Craft fairs, farmer’s markets, block parties . . . we love ’em all. So, it will be of no surprise to learn that when we found out about El Bolson’s bi-weekly artisanal market, we were pretty excited to check it out. But first, a bit about El Bolson. Picture Boulder, Colorado, before all the condos and pseudo urbanization. There are lots of parks in town, lots of outdoorsy shops (oooo. so. hard. not. to. buy. outdoorsy. items.), and lots of Argentine hippies selling various hemp-related items. But the smell of patchouli does NOT, thankfully, permeate the air. Instead, the town has a vibe that’s friendly, healthy, progressive yet perfectly relaxed.

. . . and what progressive, eco-friendly, outdoorsy town doesn’t have a great market? Situated in the town square, the street fair was populated by rows of  vendors hocking their wares. Sure, there were the booths full of “artisanal items” (read: cheaply-made replicas of “native crafts”), but those were in the minority. But the large majority of the market was of the refreshingly unique and one-of-a-kind variety (homemade soaps! gorgeous hand-carved knives! hand-woven jewelry!). And the food and drinks? Ridiculously tasty.

Here’s Mark sampling some of the locally-brewed beer. We sampled an IPA and a lager from two different brewers.

Pictured below: a sampling of what we had for lunch. Carrots, lettuce, and tomatoes from a local garden, combined with a jar of smoked trout spread.

A photo of some truly out-of-this-world homemade cheese we bought from a woman who lived in the hills. If sold in this States, this cheese would’ve cost well-above $15, I’m sure. Here, it cost $4. Plus, it was so good, we bought more.

And this? Truly my father’s daughter, I bought this box of chocolates for $5. Man oh man was it worth it! I was pleased to discover well-after purchasing the box that there was an entire other layer of chocolatey goodness beneath the top row!!! Ten slabs of dark, milk, and white chocolate—some with nuts or coconut or caramel or all three—in one box? It’s almost too good to be true.

Truth be told, we were sad to leave El Bolson—especially to get on another bus, first to super-way-too-duper-touristy Bariloche for a night, and then, to sit on our butts for (no joke) 18 hours, to Mendoza. But there is a silver lining to this cloud. I actually won the round of Bingo played against my fellow busmates. My prize? A lovely bottle of Mendozan white wine. Nice!


About andesnotthemint

Alexis, Mark, 2 seasons, 1 continent, a very long mountain range.
This entry was posted in Argentina, Food, Lex and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Artisanal Beer + Cheese + Chocolate = Choco Nino

  1. mom wyman says:

    All I need hear is the word “market-place” and it’s
    my kind of town. You’re good at finding really unique,
    yummy, items……………..Lex, I can taste that chocolate too!!
    what a great day…….enjoy your goodies and winnings
    love mom w.

  2. Always on the side of “Sir Galahad”……………………

  3. Carolyn Wieden says:

    What a treat, Lex and Mark, to experience Patagonia and all your other magical places vicariously through your wonderful blog. Just wanted you to know Portland is another rain forest these days–but spring is here(?) officially and we’re more than ready.
    I love hearing from you, dear witty Lex–of course, I still remember your FIRST written words to me many years ago on my fortieth birthday(“You are old”), and I can truly say your writing has improved with age (yours and mine). Carry on–your trip of a lifetime will lead to other great things I’m sure. Love you, Carolyn

  4. Emma says:

    We must have spent like 3 hours (and god knows how much money) at that market!

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