The New Mercado Río Frío is one of the newest neighborhood markets in Mexico City. It resulted from a re-working of an fixed tianguis street market, “Chacharas,” that operated at the site for more than 43 years.
Today it counts with 492 vendors. At 6,000 square meters, it’s a big improvement on the former giant lot of mismatched brick hovels. The entire new market was built in just 14 months. Even still, workers preserved the corner shrine in the photo above.
Don’t confuse the new market with the giant chicken distributor in Mixiuhca. Both of them are named for the Town of Río Frío, the highest point on the old road to Puebla. It’s been an important checkpoint along that road for centuries.
Today’s Mercado Río Frío actually shares (practically) the same neighborhood with the much older Mercado Bramadero. Along with 14 other markets in Iztacalco, this one exists by offering better service than the giant Centro de Abastos just to south. Abastos is the main supplier here. But the fresh food and farm produce is here lovingly prepared. International visitors get a much better place to eat than in practically any nearby restaurant or street stand.
And besides all that, the local market is always a place of adventure and local culture too.