Atlanta Underground Market

by Carrie Pokrefke
I moved from Mississippi to Atlanta, Georgia in August of 2010. It’s a big change from the slow-paced life of Mississippi, but it does offer a lot of options that I could have never found in the entire state of Mississippi. I took gymnastics for adults at a gym up the street. I have taken my dog to some pretty cool dog parks. There is a “sky gym” where you can learn aerial skills to perform like they do in Cirque du Soleil. There are comedy and improv shows (and classes). A million different groups, clubs and organizations. There are some awesome museums. Fabulous restaurants. Amazing concerts. If you can imagine it, you can try it in Atlanta.
Since I haven’t been here that long, I’m limited in where I’ve already been and places I have checked out. One event I have had the pleasure of trying was the Atlanta Underground Market. One of my neighbors told me about it over a year ago and as soon as he explained the basics of it, I knew I had to go!

The Atlanta Underground Market (AUM) is modeled after the San Francisco Underground Market. Never heard of it, either? That makes two of us! The AUM is a foodie’s heaven and is for “private members” only. To become a member, you sign up on their website – It is held monthly at various locations and the location is not released until 5:00 p.m. the day before.
Secretive AND for foodies. I signed up fast as I could!  
 Group of foodies enjoying the AUM
The first time I went, I paid my $5 to get in the door and my nose was immediately bombarded with smells from all the different food. Each vendor sells their food from between $1-5. And the food choices…well, the amount of choices is huge and the quality of the food is top-notch! I ate some much the first time I went, I felt like Violet from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.
 Atlanta Underground Market
I got busy with traveling and life in general and missed the AUM for awhile. I made the February event at the Defoor Center a priority on my calendar. I knew it would be a challenge going on a vegan diet, but I was not disappointed. That’s the great thing about the AUM and the vendors – they offer choices for vegetarians, vegans, people on gluten-free diets and mark those options at their table. I meet a bunch of friends who had never been before and they were not disappointed. It was awesome to see how excited they got from trying different foods that may never have gotten to try before. It’s nice that you can try something you think you might be interested in without making a huge financial investment.
If you live in Atlanta or are planning a trip here, check out AUM’s website and mark your calendar for the next event. You will not be disappointed, I promise!
Vendor at the Atlanta Underground Market