“You'll forget you're not in Italy”
The influx of international influences on the South 9th Street Italian Market, and its surrounding neighborhood is a wonderful assault on the senses. The smell of herbs and spices, fresh seafood , and ground coffee beans mingles perfectly with the crackle of the butcher's brown paper, multiple languages heard the on the street, and the sight of fresh sheets of pasta and silky ribbons of homemade chocolate drying in storefront windows--not to mention the dozens of rows of colorful produce. The market can be especially cozy in the winter when merchants use barrels of fire to keep shoppers warm and all of the smells are heightened. The South 9th Street Italian Market runs along 9th Street from Wharton to Fitzwater Streets. The market began in the mid-to-late 1880s when Antonio Palumbo, an Italian immigrant, opened a boarding house in the neighborhood for other Italians. Businesses sprang up to serve this growing community and began to form the largest, outdoor, continuous market in the country. Food stalls began to occupy the East side of 9th Street, where merchants sold fresh fish, fruit and vegetables. A number of butcher shops began to offer the highest-quality cuts of meat. Cheese shops, restaurants and bakeries filled the West side of 9th Street.
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