My kids wait all year for fresh strawberries. When they finally arrive in the farmers market, I’m lucky if I can get a quart home — they woodchip right through them. The strawberries we find in the farmers market are hugely different from those sold in the grocery store. A strawberry is a bright red, smallish fruit with complex flavor but a short shelf life. It’s not meant to be as big as your fist (no matter how appealing such a monster would be to dip in chocolate on Valentine’s Day) or to last for weeks in the fridge.
Until I started hanging out at farmers markets, I didn’t realize there were so many varieties of strawberries that had so many different flavor profiles. When they come into season in your area, ask the farmers what they’re growing and do a taste test to see which ones you like best.