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A Guide to D.C.’s Do-It-All Food Markets

Where to find eclectic collections of vendors

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Food hall fever has taken over the country, and developers around D.C. are particularly afflicted. Union Market is the top destination in D.C. proper, but thriving immigrant communities in the suburbs have produced their own collections of stalls selling comfort foods and photogenic sweets.

The food market bubble is expanding rapidly: Union Market developer Edens is opening phases of a Latin-American market, La Cosecha, in the same industrial stretch of Northeast throughout later summer and early fall. An outpost of the Block, Annandale’s collection of hip Asian stalls, will soon compete with the Spot and Pike Kitchen near Rockville. Northern Virginia, which just welcomed Quarter Market in Ballston, is getting new food halls in Alexandria and Rosslyn. Smorgasburg, an outdoor Saturday market that’s already taken New York and L.A. by storm, just landed in Navy Yard.

This list details established food halls and markets — and one shopping center that serves as Northern Virginia’s unofficial Little Vietnam.

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Note: Restaurants on this map are listed geographically.

1. The Spot Asian Food Hall

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255 N Washington St
Rockville, MD 20850

The Spot in Rockville’s wide-ranging options — from Taiwanese fried crispy squid to matcha egg waffle cones — are inspired by similar markets in Hong Kong. This year-old Asian food hall is a source for trendy desserts like fish-shaped taiyaki treats at Alpaca Dessert and foamy milk tea from Taiwanese tea chain Gong Cha. More substantial meals include poke bowls with a yuzu jalapeno sauce at Poki DC, fried chicken or seafood from CheersCut, hand-pulled noodles from Mian, ramen and sushi from Akira, or Japanese donburi from Tamashi. The Spot just spawned The Spot Mini, a scaled-down outpost with ramen, poke, and tea in College Park that opened in the beginning of June. —Adele Chapin

2. Tastemakers

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2800 10th St NE
Washington, DC 20017
(202) 248-4721
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The historically sleepy Brookland neighborhood got a major dining boost in 2018 with the arrival of this tiny food hall and restaurant incubator. The former factory accommodates a wide range while filling nine stalls with lots of homegrown vendors. There are bagel sandwiches from Bullfrog Bagels, taco bowls from Petworth’s Taqueria del Barrio, ice cream sandwiches at Captain Cookie, nitro coffee at Alchemist, and bourbon cocktails from Ivy City’s One Eight Distilling. —Tierney Plumb

Tastemakers food hall
Tastemakers/official photo

3. A Taste of Urbanspace

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2001 International Dr
McLean, VA 22102

What was once Isabella Eatery is now a neat food court offering everything from Japanese curry to crepe cakes from an all-star list of D.C. area vendors. Seek out rice bowls from Donburi and Lao noodles from Thip Khao owner Seng Luangrath’s Sen Khao. There are also biscuit sandwiches from Del Ray’s Stomping Ground, New York-style slices from Andy’s Pizza, and Thai iced tea ice cream from Ice Cream Jubilee to consider. —Missy Frederick

Beef bowl from Donburi at A Taste of UrbanSpace
Missy Frederick/Eater DC

4. Union Market

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1309 5th St NE
Washington, DC 20002
(301) 347-3998
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Standing on the site of the old Union Terminal Market, which debuted outdoors in 1931, the current form of D.C.’s preeminent food hall has been attracting huge crowds to Northeast since opening its renovated form in 2012. Stalwarts of the market include Buffalo and Bergen for New York-style bagels and soda jerk staples, Red Apron Butcher for charcuterie and “porkstrami” sandwiches, TaKorean for Korean tacos, and the District Fishwife for sustainable shrimp banh mis. Newer additions include Philly Wing Fry, Kwame Onwuachi’s dry-aged ribeye cheesesteak place, and Gorsha, a fast-casual approach to Ethiopian food. Burmese bodega Toli Moli offers tough-to-find Asian groceries, and Trickling Springs has some of the city’s best ice cream. The market’s popularity has helped spark a wave of development in the district outside, with the recent trendy openings of St. Anslem and Coconut Club joining Masseria. —Gabe Hiatt

Union Market [official]

5. Eastern Market

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225 7th St SE
Washington, DC 20003
(202) 698-5253
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This Capitol Hill landmark that conveniently has a namesake Metro Stop on the Blue Line first opened in 1873. A fire in 2007 called for a two-year renovation that resulted in the building’s current form. Vendors inside the South Hall Market are more focussed on the grocery side of business, with several selling high quality produce, meat, and fish. It’s worth waiting in line at the Market Lunch for famous buckwheat blueberry pancakes and mean soft shell crab sandwiches. Just remember to bring cash. On weekends, vendors set up tents outside to sell goods from the farm. You’ll also find street a rotating cast of street vendors cranking out flat-top burritos, mobile doughnuts, and more. —Gabe Hiatt

6. Quarter Market

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4238 Wilson Blvd, Arlington
VA 22203, United States

This smartly curated food court in the redeveloped Ballston Quarter complex is where acclaimed D.C. chefs go to experiment with quick eats. Himitsu partner Kevin Tien sells Sichuan-style hot chicken sandwiches at Hot Lola’s, the Timber Pizza Co. crew turns out their version of New York-style pies with Turu’s, and Gravitas chef Matt Baker will soon open a sandwich shop called French Exit. This sprawling 25,000-square-foot food hall also offers lobster rolls from Baltimore seafood spot Local Oyster, Korean rice bowls at Rice Crook, and strawberry tres leches cones Ice Cream Jubilee. There’s even a sit-down Spanish place, Copa Kitchen & Bar. —Adele Chapin

A sandwich from Hot Lola’s
Hot Lola’s [official]

7. Eden Center

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6751 Wilson Blvd
Falls Church, VA 22044
(703) 204-4600
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The indoor-outdoor home to many of D.C.’s essential Vietnamese restaurants includes the always-packed Rice Paper, Thanh Son Tofu, and Hai Duong (known for its clay pot rice). The decades-old center in suburbia is evolving to meet millennial preferences, adding a Thai option (Kao Sarn Thai Street Food), bubble tea shops that blare EDM music, and its first-ever chain (Little Sheep Mongolian Hot Pot). —Tierney Plumb

Specialty shops and restaurants line every hall of Eden Center.
Photo by Rey Lopez for Eater DC

8. The Block

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4221 John Marr Dr
Annandale, VA 22003
(703) 942-5076
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The Northern Virginia suburb of Annandale is known for a heavy concentration of Korean restaurants, but this small food hall has a nice mix of vendors selling all kinds of Asian specialties. There’s a reliable poke chain, PokeWorks, and a comfort food spot called Balo that serves everything from chicken wings to banh mi and curry laksa soup. Two sources for ice cream (Sno Cream and Munch), a new hot chicken joint (Mama Meis), and a bar with solid happy hour specials round out the options. — Missy Frederick

1. The Spot Asian Food Hall

255 N Washington St, Rockville, MD 20850

The Spot in Rockville’s wide-ranging options — from Taiwanese fried crispy squid to matcha egg waffle cones — are inspired by similar markets in Hong Kong. This year-old Asian food hall is a source for trendy desserts like fish-shaped taiyaki treats at Alpaca Dessert and foamy milk tea from Taiwanese tea chain Gong Cha. More substantial meals include poke bowls with a yuzu jalapeno sauce at Poki DC, fried chicken or seafood from CheersCut, hand-pulled noodles from Mian, ramen and sushi from Akira, or Japanese donburi from Tamashi. The Spot just spawned The Spot Mini, a scaled-down outpost with ramen, poke, and tea in College Park that opened in the beginning of June. —Adele Chapin

255 N Washington St
Rockville, MD 20850

2. Tastemakers

2800 10th St NE, Washington, DC 20017
Tastemakers food hall
Tastemakers/official photo

The historically sleepy Brookland neighborhood got a major dining boost in 2018 with the arrival of this tiny food hall and restaurant incubator. The former factory accommodates a wide range while filling nine stalls with lots of homegrown vendors. There are bagel sandwiches from Bullfrog Bagels, taco bowls from Petworth’s Taqueria del Barrio, ice cream sandwiches at Captain Cookie, nitro coffee at Alchemist, and bourbon cocktails from Ivy City’s One Eight Distilling. —Tierney Plumb

2800 10th St NE
Washington, DC 20017

3. A Taste of Urbanspace

2001 International Dr, McLean, VA 22102
Beef bowl from Donburi at A Taste of UrbanSpace
Missy Frederick/Eater DC

What was once Isabella Eatery is now a neat food court offering everything from Japanese curry to crepe cakes from an all-star list of D.C. area vendors. Seek out rice bowls from Donburi and Lao noodles from Thip Khao owner Seng Luangrath’s Sen Khao. There are also biscuit sandwiches from Del Ray’s Stomping Ground, New York-style slices from Andy’s Pizza, and Thai iced tea ice cream from Ice Cream Jubilee to consider. —Missy Frederick

2001 International Dr
McLean, VA 22102

4. Union Market

1309 5th St NE, Washington, DC 20002
Union Market [official]

Standing on the site of the old Union Terminal Market, which debuted outdoors in 1931, the current form of D.C.’s preeminent food hall has been attracting huge crowds to Northeast since opening its renovated form in 2012. Stalwarts of the market include Buffalo and Bergen for New York-style bagels and soda jerk staples, Red Apron Butcher for charcuterie and “porkstrami” sandwiches, TaKorean for Korean tacos, and the District Fishwife for sustainable shrimp banh mis. Newer additions include Philly Wing Fry, Kwame Onwuachi’s dry-aged ribeye cheesesteak place, and Gorsha, a fast-casual approach to Ethiopian food. Burmese bodega Toli Moli offers tough-to-find Asian groceries, and Trickling Springs has some of the city’s best ice cream. The market’s popularity has helped spark a wave of development in the district outside, with the recent trendy openings of St. Anslem and Coconut Club joining Masseria. —Gabe Hiatt

1309 5th St NE
Washington, DC 20002

5. Eastern Market

225 7th St SE, Washington, DC 20003

This Capitol Hill landmark that conveniently has a namesake Metro Stop on the Blue Line first opened in 1873. A fire in 2007 called for a two-year renovation that resulted in the building’s current form. Vendors inside the South Hall Market are more focussed on the grocery side of business, with several selling high quality produce, meat, and fish. It’s worth waiting in line at the Market Lunch for famous buckwheat blueberry pancakes and mean soft shell crab sandwiches. Just remember to bring cash. On weekends, vendors set up tents outside to sell goods from the farm. You’ll also find street a rotating cast of street vendors cranking out flat-top burritos, mobile doughnuts, and more. —Gabe Hiatt

225 7th St SE
Washington, DC 20003

6. Quarter Market

4238 Wilson Blvd, Arlington, VA 22203, United States
A sandwich from Hot Lola’s
Hot Lola’s [official]

This smartly curated food court in the redeveloped Ballston Quarter complex is where acclaimed D.C. chefs go to experiment with quick eats. Himitsu partner Kevin Tien sells Sichuan-style hot chicken sandwiches at Hot Lola’s, the Timber Pizza Co. crew turns out their version of New York-style pies with Turu’s, and Gravitas chef Matt Baker will soon open a sandwich shop called French Exit. This sprawling 25,000-square-foot food hall also offers lobster rolls from Baltimore seafood spot Local Oyster, Korean rice bowls at Rice Crook, and strawberry tres leches cones Ice Cream Jubilee. There’s even a sit-down Spanish place, Copa Kitchen & Bar. —Adele Chapin

4238 Wilson Blvd, Arlington
VA 22203, United States

7. Eden Center

6751 Wilson Blvd, Falls Church, VA 22044
Specialty shops and restaurants line every hall of Eden Center.
Photo by Rey Lopez for Eater DC

The indoor-outdoor home to many of D.C.’s essential Vietnamese restaurants includes the always-packed Rice Paper, Thanh Son Tofu, and Hai Duong (known for its clay pot rice). The decades-old center in suburbia is evolving to meet millennial preferences, adding a Thai option (Kao Sarn Thai Street Food), bubble tea shops that blare EDM music, and its first-ever chain (Little Sheep Mongolian Hot Pot). —Tierney Plumb

6751 Wilson Blvd
Falls Church, VA 22044

8. The Block

4221 John Marr Dr, Annandale, VA 22003

The Northern Virginia suburb of Annandale is known for a heavy concentration of Korean restaurants, but this small food hall has a nice mix of vendors selling all kinds of Asian specialties. There’s a reliable poke chain, PokeWorks, and a comfort food spot called Balo that serves everything from chicken wings to banh mi and curry laksa soup. Two sources for ice cream (Sno Cream and Munch), a new hot chicken joint (Mama Meis), and a bar with solid happy hour specials round out the options. — Missy Frederick

4221 John Marr Dr
Annandale, VA 22003

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