Thursday, 30 April 2015

Markets of Rome: Nuovo Mercato Esquilino

Today we'll talk about the Nuovo Mercato Esquilino, located in Turati street, close to the Termini Station.
This market, now a hit with tourists and fans of Asian cooking, was originally placed around the close-by Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II, naturally developed around the park due to the presence of the highly populated apartment buildings, dating around the end of the XIX century, built as an attempt to turn the Esquilino quartiere into a residential area for the middle-high class (for further reference check the article about the Acquario Romano).

On the archives of Roma Sparita you can take a peek to how the market looked in the first years of the XX century.

Due to the obvious hygienical and urbanistic troubles, on 2001 finally the administration decided to move the market, that by now was attended also by the many Chinese and Indian sellers who supported the local communities, to the ex-barracks (now partially occupied by the Faculty of Eastern Studies of La Sapienza, too) by the Termini Station, granting a better maintenance of the park and the streets around it and obviously the check of the hygienical conditions of the market.
The area is divided into two sections: on the left is the building dedicated to clothes and fabrics, and on the right is the most interesting area of the market, that dedicated to food.

Famous for its cheap prices and quality of local products, its regularly attended by locals and tourists.

But due to the high concentration of immigrants of the area, it's easy to find really peculiar vegetables and foods, destined the various ethnic restaurants of the area:

There's also meat and fish on sale, but I'm not so sure about the quality of the fish, even if around I read good reviews about it...

In the other area you can find interesting import fabrics at quite the affordable prices, cheap clothes and other interesting bits (I'm a fan of the souvenir tapestries, even if by now that's mere touristic merchandise that can be found everywhere in Italy!)

As this is mostly a proper market for food, it's missing some of the "adventurous shopping vibe" that we can find in places like Porta Portese or Via Sannio, but its genuine melting-pot mood made a place of touristic interest and a symbol of cultural integration of it, so if you happen around the place I suggest you to take a peek and eventually to buy a snack (my suggestion is to try the tasty pickled olives pictured above)!

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