Vino Canchón is the largest market in the City of Cuzco and its major wholesale market. Located in the district of San Jeronimo, this market supplies the whole city as well as nearby districts such as San Salvador and Urcos.
If you go to the market you will see that it is organized by sections. Each carries a sign to differentiate it. For example there is a section for meat, one for vegetables, and so on for each type of product.
From 3 am movement begins in the Vino Canchón market. Trucks arrive filled with different products from almost all of Peru. After unloading the trucks, the vendors and the men who work to help carry purchases organize themselves for a day of sales to the public.
This market is open every day. On the days around fiestas, when the custom is to cook for family and friends, as well as on Sundays, the market fills with clients buying food and taking it home.
In this market are sold the vast majority of the products needed for Cuzco’s gastronomy, as well as ingredients for our variety of traditional dishes. It is also attracts large numbers of Cuzqueños because the products are always fresh and relatively inexpensive.’
It is also one of the few places remaining where our mother language, Quechua, dominates. The vendors also dress in traditional clothing. All day long, people speak to each other in the traditional language of our region and the vendors wear colorful skirts that we call polleras (poh-yéh-rahs), blouses, and the various hats of our region, especially the white stove-pipe hats of the market women.
The vendors in this market are very warm and friendly. They offer you various ways to purchase the quantity you need of the products. One of the most common phrases is “pase casero, pregunte”, “come on in my friend, ask what you wish.” They will also tell you from where their produce comes and which are the best.
In order to make purchases, it is recommendable that you go very early in order to find the freshest fruit and vegetables. You also save yourself from the crowds.
At the Vino Canchón market there are various options for transportation to help you get your purchases home. Public buses serve it, arriving from various parts of the city. There are also a lot of taxis who ask you where they can take you, as you approach.
The market is a lively and engaging place. It will draw you in and fascinate you. Its stalls are the heart of Cuzco’s culinary life.