Nestled in Ballard is one of the best markets in the city. We’re all familiar with QFC, Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s, but for local produce there is no better place than Top Banana.
A mecca for fresh fruits and vegetables, Top Banana is where I go to stock up on my pink lady and fuji apples, rainier cherries, organic bananas, local raspberries, pomegranate, squash and lots more.
At the busy corner of 65th and 15th there are signs advertising specials and a shack with hanging plants and flowers as well as bins of watermelon, corn and pumpkins. In the winter, they also sell Christmas trees. Come inside and you’ll be enticed by the colorful rows of green, red and yellow peppers, bright orange carrots, purple cabbage and lots of leafy greens. Don’t miss the goodies on the shelves and in the fridge.
One of the things I love most about this place is the conversations you have with the staff. They take the time to tell you exactly what is in season and willingly offer a sample of everything. The owner Jimmy picks a lot of his produce straight from the farm, eliminating the need for middle men and keeping the prices appealingly low. The shop has been in business for 20 years and offers exceptional service, including walking you to your car.
With every visit I leave satisfied with a rainbow of nutrition.
Bonus: there is a cute little espresso house right outside with fresh coffee and eatables.