Easton Public Market: A Utopian Destination for Lafayette’s Foodies

Easton, Pennsylvania is not only home to the Lafayette Leopards, but a solid destination town for food enthusiasts. It’s home to annual food festivals like PA Bacon Fest and Easton Garlic Fest, and it even made the cut for the top ten best restaurant towns in Pennsylvania. One of the most well-known food spots among Laf students is the Easton Public Market.  A big open space full of many vendor stands, the Public Market truly has something for everyone - from wood-fired pizza, to barbecue, to tacos, to ramen, to crepes, to chocolates and even fine wines.  Here’s a quick overview of the top five EPM vendors you’re missing out on if you’ve yet to make the trip:

  1. More than Q Barbecue

More than Q, my personal favorite spot at the Market, caters to any of one’s comfort food or barbecue needs.  You can select some of the smoked meats - brisket, pulled pork, pulled beef, sausage, or spare ribs - and either throw them on a sandwich with your choice of toppings or buy a pound or two to take home.  There’s also a great selection of sides, ranging from five-cheese mac n’ cheese to collard greens with bacon and garlic.

For the sake of this article, I decided to take yet another trip to EPM and try something out of my comfort zone.  My typical order is a pulled beef sandwich, served on a soft bun with barbecue sauce, house pickles (cucumbers, red onion, and sweet pepper), and creamy coleslaw.  This time around, though, I ambitiously went for the fried chicken sandwich (with sriracha mayo and creamy relish coleslaw) with sides of mac n’ cheese and cornbread, pictured below.  Needless to say, I was not disappointed, and honestly, I’m still full.

(fried chicken sandwich from More Than Q with cornbread and a side of five-cheese mac!)

  1. Mister Lee’s Noodles

When you first walk into Easton Public Market, if you look to the right, you’ll be greeted by guests slurping on soups or munching on bowls.  Ramen is all the rage lately, so it was only fitting that a vendor offering a unique take on traditional Japanese dishes and noodles set up shop in the Public Market.  Some of the less conventional (but undeniably delicious!) menu items include bacon ramen with a bacon-dashi broth, tempura bacon, mushrooms, pickled onions, greens, garlic, and a sixty-minute egg, or barbecue-inspired Sticky Ramen with barbecue favorites like pork belly, collard greens, and even a hush puppy!

  1. Taylor Taco Shop

Chipotle lovers: this one’s for you.  Taylor Tacos is a pretty new, build-your-own Mexican-inspired eatery with plentiful options to stuff your taco, bowl, or burrito.  They also have a great selection of sides, covering all of the essentials - like chips and guac, salsa, and even street corn. You walk through the line at the brightly colored stand, choosing from lots of freshly prepared and appetizing ingredients, and can top it all off with something spicy or sweet from their “toppings” selection.  If you’re into spicy, like myself, I’d recommend topping your bowl, taco, or burrito with a combination of “verde” and “chipotle cream” - it adds a perfect kick that complements all of Taylor’s ingredients.

  1. Scratch

Scratch is a pizza vendor that boasts its use of all-natural ingredients “from scratch”.  Their menu includes an assortment of classic and specialty wood-fired pizzas, beer and mixed drinks (for those who are of legal age), and “bar bites” including a half-pizza, fresh bread with olive oil, and savory garlic knots. Located in the back of Easton Public Market, surrounded by circular tables, this is the perfect area for sitting with a group.  Eating pizza doesn’t create quite the same kind of guilt when the pizza’s been prepared with fresh, naturally-sourced ingredients! If you are mid-health kick, though, they do have a delicious house salad, changing seasonally to offer the best possible healthy dining experience.

  1. Full of Crepe

Whether you’re enjoying a crepe as a breakfast pick-me-up, or an after-dinner dessert at Marquis Dining Hall, they can really find their place any time of day.  Full of Crepe realizes this, and prepares a wide variety of crepes - and even paninis! - appropriate for breakfast, lunch, or dinnertime consumption.  They have sweet and savory crepes, such as nutella with fruit and caprese, respectively, and you have the option to build your own ideal crepe creation or order right off of the thoughtfully curated menu.

 

I’ve seldom encountered a place quite like Easton Public Market.  It was my first stop when I toured campus as a junior in high school, and quite frankly, it may or may not have played a minor role in my decision to attend Lafayette.  There’s truly something for every hungry person, with any preferences, in any mood, at any time of day. Besides the five I’ve listed, the other Public Market vendors include a coffee shop, a bakery, a winery, a locally-sourced and organic meat shop, a selection of gourmet groceries, and even more.  EPM’s only flaw is that it’s closed on both Mondays and Tuesdays, so be sure to get down there on one of the five days you can! Whether you’re munching on some spare ribs at More Than Q or indulging in a sweet, berry-filled crepe, it will be well worth the trip down the hill.