I had the joy of spending a couple hours at the Union Square Farmer’s Market with Chef Joe Macchia of Biblio learning about kohlrabi, celtuce, and the secrets of keeping basil alive. Chef Joe takes much pride in his seasonally-inspired menu embracing the freshest locally-sourced ingredients while creating what has been called “elegant comfort food”. Joe hand-picks the majority of the produce that gets chopped, mashed, fried and even juiced in his kitchen; requiring a very early morning at least once a week. But there was no sign of fatigue once this food lover entered the market with eyes wide and culinary gears turning. The atmosphere is a mix of hectic and inspiring: chef coats dotting the crowds of nearly-clueless food lovers like myself. Luckily, most of the produce is well-labeled and, if you muster up the courage to ask a question, the employees are more than excited to help and even provide some helpful tips. The farmers, primarily from New Jersey and New York, recognize the chefs even without their uniform, giving a warm welcome and, if they’re feeling particularly friendly, hand over a few tastes of their finest.