From pretzel-crusted caramel apples and shiraz pouring-sauce to traditional gingerbread houses and organic turkeys – you'll find what you need for holiday prep and gift-buying lists, thanks to our rundown of Christmas food markets in NSW.
Sydney Living Museums' Christmas Fare
If it's baked, glazed, smoked, crafted and perfect for the Christmas table, you'll find it here. You'll spot Black Star Pastry, Brooklyn Boy Bagels, popular picklers Cornersmith, hot-sauce masters Handsome Devils Co. and tea merchants T Totaler. The Young Henrys stall will be handy for that much-needed beer break.
Thursday, December 17, 4pm-9pm, Hyde Park Barracks, Queens Square, Macquarie Street, Sydney. Admission by gold coin (entry includes admission to the Hyde Park Barracks Museum).
Brewery Yard Christmas Markets
Dubbed a "Bavarian Christmas market with a Brewery Yard twist", this fair takes place in the atrium of Central Park – not far from Central Station. Perfect for after-work browsing, this event offers 50 stallholders selling a selection of ready-to-eat food, beverages and dry goods. The festive entertainment includes Santa's merry elves and a troupe of hip-hop carollers, as well as live music, art demonstrations, workshops, Christmas activities and treats.
December 3-4, 4-9pm, The Living Mall, Central Park, 28 Broadway, Chippendale.
Sydney Morning Herald Growers' Market
Join Black Star Pastry's founder, Christopher Thé, as he reveals the secret to making your own fruit mince pies. He'll be on the market chef stage at 8.30am and 9.30am. You can also browse the harbourside market and check out more than 70 local and regional producers showcasing vegetables, herbs, lamb, seafood, pork and more.
December 5, 7am-11am, Pyrmont Bay Park Market, Pyrmont Park.
36-Hour Seafood Marathon at Sydney Fish Market
For 20 years, Sydneysiders have flocked to the 36-hour seafood marathon at Sydney Fish Market. More than 100,000 shoppers are expected to drop by in 2015 for oysters, sashimi and prawns. For many, it's an annual tradition to get the freshest seafood in the city, as well as Christmas turkey, ham, fresh bread, fruit, and vegetables.
From 5am on December 23, until 5pm on December 24. Bank Street & Pyrmont Bridge Road, Sydney, 9004 1100.
Carriageworks Christmas Twilight Market
Love the Eveleigh Markets at Carriageworks, but prefer it with a sleep-in? You can enjoy the Christmas version at dusk. For this fair, holiday food shopping has never been more sublime (or handy): expect fresh turkey, plum puddings, cheeses and much more from the region's best producers.
December 23, 4pm–9pm, free, 245 Wilson Street, Eveleigh, 02 8571 9099.
EQ Village Markets
There's food trucks, and then there's food trucks. EQ Village Markets have the real deal – farmers' trucks arrive from the overnight drive rom the country, with fresh produce bundled safely in the back. Christmas fare includes new-season cherries, stone fruit and summer vegetables, edible flowers, and heritage root vegetables. And don't forget to have a yarn directly with the farmer.
Every Wednesday and Saturday from 9am to 2pm. The Entertainment Quarter, 122 Lang Road, Moore Park.
The Finders Keepers market
Food trucks serving burgers, vintage caravans pumping out AllPress coffee, glazed doughnuts and caramel apples and a Bloodwood pop-up: the Finders Keepers market has certainly upped its food-game ante just in time for Christmas. Other stallholders include Pana Chocolate, Farmer Jo, Stone & Wood brewing company and La Petite Tarte. There will be about 35 food and drink outlets in total, with options to eat now, eat later, or pick up a gift for someone special.
December 11, 6pm-10pm; December 12, 10am-6pm; December 13, 10am-4pm. Australian Technology Park, Exhibition Hall, Locomotive Street, Eveleigh. $2 entry fee, children under 12 free.
The Christmas Fair, Mount Penang Gardens
Set in the Mount Penang Gardens on the Central Coast, this is a great way to combine market-going with a short trip away from the Christmas-crazed city. Find traditional favourites like puddings and brandy sauce, hand-decorated gingerbread cookies and fresh seasonal cherries from Young. Central Coast local Julie Goodwin will also be there, signing her new book, Homemade Takeaway, from 11am in the main shopping area
December 6, 9am-2pm, Mount Penang Gardens, Kariong, Central Coast.
Rotary Club of Orange Christmas Markets
There'll be no shortage of local produce and wines for you to enjoy at the Rotary Christmas Markets. Pick up cherries from Orange, Bavarian baked goods, pickles and other goodies for your pantry or fridge. Grab a treat from Rotary's barbecue stall while you're here.
December 13 and 20, 9am-2pm, North Court of Orange's Civic Centre. Entry by gold coin donation.
Mosman Twilight markets
You'll definitely find a diverse range of Australian and international items here: think handmade fruitcakes, Irish soda bread, hot German bratwurst, traditional Russian fare and even treats for the family pet. All set to a backdrop of live carols and jazz.
December 10, 4.30-9.30pm, Mosman Square and Village Green, Spit Junction, Mosman.
Southern Highlands Christmas Fair
Held in the grounds of Southern Highland Wines, this is one of the largest annual Christmas fairs outside Sydney. There will be 200 stalls, offering anything and everything: coconut ice, Mexican sugar skulls, cruffins, Christmas cupcake puddings, handmade habanero sauce, local olives and fresh boysenberries.
December 12-13, 9am-4pm. Corner of Illawarra Highway & Oldbury Road, Sutton Forest, 4868 2263. Entry is $3 for adults and over 16s, and $1 for 15 years and under.
The Beaches Christmas Market
The Beaches Market has added this extra Christmas event for the first time, giving visitors a chance to pick up fresh produce for the holidays. No pre-order necessary for the gastronomically unorganised – pick up a Christmas turkey or ham on the day.
December 23, 8am-1pm. Held on the grass in front of the grandstand of Pittwater Rugby Park, 1472 Pittwater Road, Warriewood.
Kids Christmas Nights at The Grounds
Enjoy Christmas under the fairy lights as The Grounds opens up The Garden at night. Not technically a market, but we couldn't resist adding this to our list. Watch as the The Grounds' pastry chefs give desserts a holiday makeover, grab some fresh doughnuts, or beat the heat with the house-made soft serve slurpees. Parents can enjoy some egg nog while kids get their photos taken with Santa (the family pet is welcome to pose for the cameras, too).
December 9-10,15-16, 6-9pm, December 18-19, 6-10pm, The Grounds of Alexandria, Building 7, 2 Huntley Street, Alexandria, 02 9699 2225.
Camden Country Christmas markets
This event has more than 40 food vendors alone (with an impressive 170 stallholders in total). You'll discover homemade gingerbread houses, cookies, jams and local produce from neighbouring farms. Plus, there's breakfast with Santa for the kids (including various activities and a present from the man in red himself); or the Christmas buffet lunch for the whole family, hosted in the historical Granary Restaurant.
December 20, 12-6pm, Belgenny Farm, Elizabeth Macarthur Ave, Camden South. From $5 for adults, kids free.