Westfield Old Orchard airs weekly French Market
Christine Coffman (left) alongside Provence Village shows a tablecloth to Mary Smith this month during Westfield Old Orchard's first French Market. The market runs every Thursday for the next couple months. | Curtis Lehmkuhl~Sun-Times Media
Where: Westfield Old Orchard near Macy’s and the Professional Building
When: 2-7 p.m. Thursdays during summer.
Vendors: About a dozen selling gourmet edibles and beverages and boutique items.
Updated: July 31, 2012 5:42PM
Westfield Old Orchard every Thursday transforms itself into an outdoor French market with a strip of boutiques near Macy’s and the mall’s Professional Building.
That’s where you’ll find a plethora of outdoor vendors — friendly and gregarious sellers with a plethora of goods to offer.
“I think it’s lovely,” said shopper Shanna Mackson of Wilmette. “On a beautiful day like this, it’s nice to be outside and shop.”
Mackson was looking over some tablecloths at Provence Village Ltd. as vendor Christine Coffman showed her a variety of them.
Asked what she thinks of the open air addition to Old Orchard’s shopping center, Coffman said, “great, great, great.”
“Nobody buys stuff in stores anymore,” she said, exuberantly. “This is the way to go.”
Coffman should know having worked for Provence at outdoor markets for seven years.
Now Old Orchard has joined the game from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursdays throughout the summer.
Most of the vendors sell edibles as you would expect at an outdoor French market.
Lou’s Old Fashioned serves up a buffet of pretzel bread, salsa, pickles, beets, olive oil, maple syrup, honey, mayonnaise and more.
Mike Farrenkopf has been selling for Lou’s at outdoor markets for two years now.
“People really like it,” he said. “It’s a different kind of shopping for them and it’s really caught on.”
The outdoor French market is run by Bensidoun USA.
Vendors available every Thursday at the Skokie shopping center include the following:
Organo Gold selling instant organic coffee, mocha, latte, green tea and more.
B True Bakery selling all natural whole grain baked goods, sweet pastries and artisan breads.
The Bleu Olive selling olive oils, balsamic vinegar, gourmet sauces and chocolate.
Lou’s Old Fashioned selling pretzel bread, salsa, pickles, beets, olive oil, maple syrup and more,
Fraternite Notre Dame selling French pastries, croissants, apple pastries and religious items.
Hahn’s Bakery selling Labriola breads, pretzels, freshly fried doughnuts, prepared mustards, jams and salsa.
The Cheese People selling mostly local specialty cheeses.
KAP Farms Inc. selling fruits, vegetables and mustards.
Provence Village Ltd. selling tablecloths, soaps, lavender binder, bags, grinders, napkins, bakery goods and olive oil.
Denny’s Acres selling fruits and vegetables from Illinois and Wisconsin.
Three Tarts Bakery selling breads, coffee cakes, muffins, scones, pies cookies and cupcakes.