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The Hamptons
5 Fabulous Farm Stands

BY SARAH BERNARD

1 Hayground Market
When you spot this landmark roadside stand on the quiet stretch of Route 27 right before Bridgehampton town comes into view, you know your Hamptons weekend has officially begun. In addition to picking the picture-perfect pepper from the stand, you can pick your own berries and wildflowers in the adjacent fields. (1616 Montauk Highway, Bridgehampton; 631-537-1676.)

2 J.M. Pike Farm
Parked in between the Sagg General Store on one end of the street and the lofty Loaves & Fishes gourmet caterers on the other lies this always-busy wagon. While there's no flashy sign announcing its presence, the heaping piles of heirloom tomatoes and stacks of corn in August will clue you in. So will the lines of Mercedes convertibles parked in front. (Sagg Main Street, Sagaponack.)

3 North Sea Farms
Back-roaders ducking the gridlock on Route 27 love North Sea Road for its congestion-free water views and a chance to hit this farm-stand gem. The potted plants, cut flowers, and assortment of local vegetables are top-notch, but the real draws are the freshly killed chickens (sorry, but it is a farm) and the eggs. (1060 Noyac Road, Southampton; 631-283-0735.)

4 Round Swamp Farms The vegetables here are even better than fresh-off-the-truck -- they come from Carolyn Lester Snyder's family farm out back. There's also a fresh-fish market on the premises as well as a bakery that churns out everything from irresistible blueberry muffins to downright addictive mini-chocolate-chip cookies. Be sure to pick up some of the homemade jams and salsas. Our favorite indulgence: the bread-and-butter pickles. (184 Three Mile Harbor Road, East Hampton; 631-324-4438.)

5 Amagansett Farmer's Market
This famous institution almost justifies the city-to-Hamptons commute in itself. Along with the locally grown produce, there's a deli that makes sandwiches and wraps, a cheese department, meat and fish counters, and a bakery. Overwhelmed with choices? Sip a cup of coffee at one of the garden tables overlooking the Japanese fish pond. (Route 27 Main Street, Amagansett; 631-267-3894.)

 
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