Farmers' Markets

Farmers' Market Finds: Panzano's Palette of Fall Produce

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Linnea Covington
Chef Lebas wanted to try the giant Georgia Candy Roaster from Kiowa Valley Organics in Roggen.
Every Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. through October 28, the Union Station Farmers' Market (run by Boulder County Farmers' Markets), rolls out the jewels of the earth. There are new finds each week, which makes it a marketplace perfect for a chef looking to try something fresh, new and grown nearby.

Nicolas Lebas just moved to Colorado from Florida to take a job as the executive chef of Panzano at the Hotel Monaco downtown. Despite the chill, Lebas was excited to shop for Colorado produce. "In Florida you don't really have farmers' markets, it's too hot and humid and mostly it's just fruit," he says while clutching a hot cup of coffee from Pigtrain Coffee Company. "I just want to walk around and see what's seasonal."

Lebas had a basic idea of what he might find—beets, potatoes, carrots and squash—but it turned out there was a lot more going on than he imagined: giant Georgia Candy Roaster squash, purple and orange Indigo Kumquat tomatoes and a strange herb called salad burnet There was also Lorz Italian garlic, juicy and bitter Harrow Sweet pears, and a gnarly hunk of celery root that looked like something from a Halloween flick. Back at Panzano, the chef cooked up a rich and warming plate of squash gnocchi, crispy pancetta from il porcellino salumi, pan-roasted mushrooms from Mile High Fungi and oil-poached onions from ACRES at Warren Tech. Read the full story of what what we found and what Lebas cooked to get an idea of what might be coming soon to Panzano's fall menu.