News + Culture

Julie Herfel’s Current Obsession

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Julie Herfel

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Market Treasures


Director of Creative Operations at Lindsay, Stone & Briggs


Madison’s Dane County Farmer’s Market


One of my true happy places is the Dane County Farmer’s Market on the Square. It’s one of the biggest outdoor farmer’s markets in the region, and it’s totally local. Whenever I travel, I always go the local farmer’s market and none live up to our own Madison market. 

I’ve been attending the farmer’s market nearly every Saturday for 30 years. This Saturday was the first outdoor market of the year and I have deemed that day every year my own personal holiday—I had a hard time sleeping Friday night because I was so excited.

Honestly, I feel that way every Saturday in anticipation of what will be at the market as we move through the seasons.


The energy at the market is contagious. Everyone was greeting each other with hugs all around. For me it is a celebration of friendships made over the years, the farmers and their food, plants and flowers.

I truly feel blessed to have so much bounty here in Madison. There are so many people dedicated to providing us with fresh and seasonal products, and there is nothing better than bringing home the treasures of the market and making and sharing a meal, my home and garden with friends and family.


One Saturday a long time ago, I discreetly followed Odessa Piper, the then chef and original proprietor of L’Etoile, and THE Alice Waters around the square as they shopped the market. It was so damn exciting to me. I felt like I was acquiring insider information.

I still get excited when I see Tory Miller with his Graze wagon and other Madison chefs buying their food at the market for their restaurants.

Julie Herfel

Queen of the dinner party.

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