This is one of the great markets in the USA! We were blown over when we 'discovered' the West Side Market in Cleveland... The primary structure was designed by the same architects that designed the Cleveland Museum of Art...and this building was actually designed to serve as a market. It opened for business back in 1912.
Well, it's still in business! An estimated 1 million visitors/shoppers explored this enormous food paradise during 2009. The market has a huge high vaulted ceiling and there is a 137' clock tower at the other end of the building.
Semi-enclosed single level structures stretch along one side and one end of the primary market building. These 'outside' buildings are packed from end to end with produce stands. Hawkers at each stand push their fruits and vegetables, offering samples to passing customers.
When I checked the current listing of produce vendors, I counted 32 different stands. The variety, quality and pricing are significantly superior then you can find in other stores... The competition helps, I'm sure!
Then there is the main hall... There are 35 butchers and providers of meat products listed plus 3 Seafood vendors and 4 dairy/cheese providers.
I checked the complete list and totalled up the number of booths/vendors that are operating at the West Side Market. There are a total of 116 booths to view and visit!
In addition to all of the vendors listed above, there are flower vendors, spice providers, ready-to-eat goodies, candy, nuts, Scottish & Irish meat pies, coffee cakes, a variety of bread, pies, cakes, pretzels, popcorn...etc., etc.
During our first visit, there was so much to look at, take in and comprehend that it was actually a bit mind-numbing! Now, whenever we visit the Cleveland area we come equipped with a large cooler and a bunch of ice packs...
What kind of meat do you want? There is Beef, Pork, Lamb, Goat, Sausages of any kind, Liver, Gyros, Bacon and Jerky. The meat is fresh, the quality is great and, as with the produce, the price is right.
The West Side Market is located at the corner of 25th Street & Lorain in the near west side...not too far from downtown Cleveland. Hours are: Monday & Wednesday from 7 am to 4 pm; Friday & Saturday from 7 am to 6 pm. Check it out at http://www.westsidemarket.org/.