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Favorite Ethnic Market


Gastro888
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Just wanted to start something new and different. I usually hit the big ones - Han Ah Rheum, Lotte, Maxim, Kam San, Eden Supermarket, Asian Market (Southeast Asian grocery store) and Hung Phat. (Yes, there is a trend here...)

For non-Asian stuff, I like to go to Rodman's next to White Flint Mall in Maryland - I can get my Cadbury fix and scope out some interesting stuff from the UK as well as Russia.

Where do y'all like to go?

(Sidebar: Funny thing is that for me while I growing up, I thought of the local Giant and Safeway as ethnic markets! :lol: )

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Thai Market across the street from Safeway in downtown SS.

For a good site look here.

I started my own list on eG some time and promised babka I would update some time ago but never did. It was in fact my first post on eG. <sniff> </sniff>

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The "88 Market" in the Culmore shopping center on Leesburg Pike between Bailey's Crossroads & Seven Corners (6035 Leesburg Pike) in Arlington (hmm, I think that area is considered Arlington :lol: ). It has both latin and asian foods, including fresh veggies and refrigerated items.

As to why... mainly because it is just a few blocks down the street from the Trader Joe's closest to my house!

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The Grand Mart in Anandale and Seven Corners has an amazing selection of both Asian and Latin food, vegetables and fresh fish. El Chaparral in Arlington has a wonderful butcher shop with different types of chorizos (hello BBQ!). For good Thai I like Bangkok 54 market in Arlington.

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Caribbean Market on New Hampshire in Langley Park, because I've never seen anything else like it in the area and I always find something new to try. Plus they have take-away meat patties (chicken, fish and veg too) and cases of Ting at the front. :lol:

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There's a Middle-Eastern market off of Duke St., but I can't for the life of me remember either the street or the name. They have, I believe, a Halal meat counter, plenty of canned/bottled goods, as well as tagines, bowls, glassware, music, etc. There's a carry-out next door.

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Any good Asian or Indian markets in DC? preferably NW? I know that is asking alot, but it seems that one can get most the sauces and essentials of asian cooking at least at the regular markets. So I'm looking for a place nearby that has the basics and then some. Thanks.

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I like the big marts mentioned in post #1, but another one that hasn't been mentioned is the Lebanese Butcher on Annandale Road and Hill Street. Friendly and accomodating service for high quality lamb, veal, chicken and, if the spirit moves you -- goat -- all priced to go. Also a good selection of the usual Middle Eastern groceries, e.g. fal, spices, pomegranite juice.

Edited by FunnyJohn
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This may not count as "ethnic" to many, but since I grew up on Indian, Italian is pretty darn ethnic to me... and I cannot stop going to Litteris. Maybe that's because I'm just hopelessly addicted to Prosecco... but I think its the best Italian market in D.C. They don't have fresh produce, but they have great meat and a really amazing selection of vinegars and oils...

A stretch as far as "ethnic" goes?

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I second the Litteri's recommendation.

If you are looking for Asian not too far out Daurma on Arlington Blvd. and Hiroki (I think) on St. Elmo's in Bethesda are both good Asian markets. The latter is a great resource for sushi and Daruma has just about anything Japanese that you are looking for.

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Just wanted to start something new and different. I usually hit the big ones - Han Ah Rheum, Lotte, Maxim, Kam San, Eden Supermarket, Asian Market (Southeast Asian grocery store) and Hung Phat. (Yes, there is a trend here...)

I am a big fan of Super H, which is Han Ah Rheum's flagship store. It has *almost* everything, including a sizable selection of hispanic foods. They have done a great job of keeping the produce section manouverable during peak periods and the checkout lines are generally quite short. The extensive seafood section is astonishingly odor free, too. They have been spotty on their weekend uni supply, but last time I was there, a tank chock full of live abalone had been added to the selection.

No visit to A&J in Annandale is complete without a quick hop into Kam San.

Grand Marts seem to vary tremendously from location to location. I like the one in Centerville; it has a very large produce section and a wide selection of Asian and hispanic items. The new one at 7 Corners seems to be pretty skimpy on Asian items and have more hispanic ones.

Bangkok 54's market has a gorgeous selection of frozen herbs and vegetables. You know that you need that package of green peppercorns, still on the stalk.

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I second the Letteri's recommendation.

If you are looking for Asian not too far out Daurma on Arlington Blvd. and Hiroki (I think) on St. Elmo's in Bethesda are both good Asian markets. The latter is a great resource for sushi and Daruma has just about anything Japanese that you are looking for.

I guess I'll have to trek out to MoCo to stock up on my Asian ethnic delights.

As for italian markets - Literris from its website looks like it beats my local store Vace in terms of selection. Vace in Cleveland Park is a great little store which has good NY style pizza by the slice made with fresh mozzarella and all kinds of tasty frozen pastas. I think the manicotti is the best.

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It seems that the Asian grocery on H street between 6th and 7th NW has shut down. Drove by this past Sunday and was going to pop in, but there were big leasing signs on the door. Shame to lose that place because it was in a great location and it had next to everything! Does anyone know of any other quality Asian markets so close to downtown?

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I had heard from friends that Super H in Fairfax was a much nicer, better-supplied store than Han An Reum in Merrifield, which is where I have been going. I decided to check out Super H and what I found suprised me. More so, because they are owned by the same company.

The produce department at Super H is superior. No contest there. Better selection, better display, fresher appearance of the produce, and wider aisles, so it's easier to shop. I found fresh cranberry beans, and some very fresh-looking favas, and the selection of fresh herbs was exhilarating.

But I looked in vain for duck legs in the meat department. A few frozen whole ducks only.

And the fish department was not even half the size of the one at HAR. They had no fresh squid, an abbreviated selection of fish, and only four or five different kinds of clams and mussels.

So I stopped at Han An Reum on my way home. And bought a dozen duck legs to make confit. And some beautiful whole fresh squid which became a sort of Tuscan-style improvisation with the cranberry beans. I served the favas with the duck confit.

Now that I've seen how good the produce section is at Super H, I'll probably end up doing the two-stage shopping trip from now on. Gotta love HAR. Since I discovered the fresh duck legs for $1.99 a pound there, we have gotten totally hooked on confit.

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I've been compiling a list of area (DC, MD, VA, but all

within about 20 miles of DC) ethnic markets and I want to

find out what DR readers consider their favorite in the following cuisines:

-Indian,

-Asian,

-Latino,

-Middle Eastern

The goal is to give people one resource where they can

find these markets with just a little bit of info - does the

market carry prepared foods or have a restaurant, do

they carry produce, a butcher shop, seafood, etc..I'm

compiling this list and giving it to people who attend my

cooking classes, but it could also serve as a "foodie"

resource here on DR.

Some obvious Biggies are the Super H Mart's, Bestways,

and Lotte's, but it would be interesting even to hear about

how they differ, or which carry freshest or best priced produce.

I have to say that living in DC, I'm amazed how much cheaper

food is at Super H Mart in comparison to Whole Foods -

sometimes 20% of the price!

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Ok, not what you're looking for, but... I love the Yekta market (Persian/middle eastern) next door to Joe's Noodle House (355 a bit north of congressional plaza and on the east side of the street in a weird strip mall that faces north, not the pike). Great feta, olives, bread, halvah.

Also want to second JPW's rec for the Thai market across the street from the SS Safeway. There is (at least used to be) an Indian grocer down the block from the Thai market. I don't think they had a particularly special selection or anything really amazing, but I always really liked the owner. Quiet, soft spoken, friendly. When I lived closer to him, he was where I went for all of my Indian grocery needs.

eta: more details on location of Yekta

Edited by smokey
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There is (at least used to be) an Indian grocer down the block from the Thai market.  I don't think they had a particularly special selection or anything really amazing, but I always really liked the owner.  Quiet, soft spoken, friendly.  When I lived closer to him, he was where I went for all of my Indian grocery needs.

Next to the 7-11 on Fenton is my all time favorite combo -- Indian and Ethiopian grocery store.

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Ok, not what you're looking for, but... I love the Yekta market (Persian/middle eastern) next door to Joe's Noodle House (355 a bit north of congressional plaza and on the east side of the street in a weird strip mall that faces north, not the pike).  Great feta, olives, bread, halvah.

Slightly off topic, but the cafe that is connected to Yekta makes mighty fine kabobs. Especially the cornish game hen.

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Next to the 7-11 on Fenton is my all time favorite combo -- Indian and Ethiopian grocery store.

Is this place still there? Is there a more specific address and/or name of the store?

I'm searching for niter kebbeh and berbere. I will try the stores on 18th Street but am interested in finding other outlets for Ethiopian groceries.

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Just to make sure: There are NO Asian markets in DC? NONE? :)

There used to be a fairly decent one for shelved items (chili paste, black vinegar, etc.) and frozen goods such as Chinese sausage. However, Lee's Market closed about a year ago and the only remaining store in Chinatown is rather small with limited supplies.

Heather turned me on to two in Rockville which are vastly superior and at least four times bigger than Lee's (see earlier post). They're both close to one another and after that first trek out to Rockville on the metro, extremely easy to find and about a 10-minute walk from the station; 15-20 mins. in flip-flops or high heels.

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Is this place still there?  Is there a more specific address and/or name of the store?

I'm searching for niter kebbeh and berbere.  I will try the stores on 18th Street but am interested in finding other outlets for Ethiopian groceries.

Still there. Can't recall the exact name, but the awning says "Indian Ethiopian Grocery". Can't recall name of cross street, but it's right across from the Peter Pan bus station. It's only 3-4 blocks East on Fenton from the *NEW* downtown SS.

Boy, I'm a lot of help, huh. :)

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Pork bulgogi deliciousness alert. The Grand Mart at Seven Corners today had jars of Pork bulgogi marinade on sale for $1.99 instead of the usual $4.99. This was right above the frozen sliced pork butt.

Each jar marinates about 8.5 pounds of meat. Buy a jar and invite some friends over.

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Are there any good Indian grocery stoes in the western part of the county (i.e., Rockville, Gaithersburg, and Bethesda)?  The Grand Mart off Muddy Branch Road satisfies most of my shopping needs, but not all of them.

There's Patel Brothers in the College Plaza shopping center, right next door to Magruder's on the Frederick Road.

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I was up in Rockville yestserday and hit a couple of the markets out there. I started at International European Market (I think that's the name) down the street from the Yekta market. It's a Russian deli with a full meat and cheese counter and what looked like a hot bar in the back. I picked up some butter and other stuff for the picnic next weekend as well as beet salad that doesn't have enough garlic for my taste.

Afterwards I stopped at Lotte on Nicholson. I was hoping to pick up some little necks for dinner but they only had a few left. The most intresting thing I picked up isn't really food related. It's bamboo salt flavored toothpaste. I can't figure out how to describe the taste other than pasty-a tiny minty-a little salty toothpaste. The most part is that it appears the toothpaste is made by the same company that makes my cell phone :)

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Are there any good Indian grocery stoes in the western part of the county (i.e., Rockville, Gaithersburg, and Bethesda)? The Grand Mart off Muddy Branch Road satisfies most of my shopping needs, but not all of them.

With a very limited knowledge of the subject, there are several Indian groceries in central MoCo that I've found useful. In Rockville, there's one in the strip mall just west of the 355/Wooton Parkway intersection, with a pretty good selection of sweets, especially around Holi (which has already passed this year). They also seem to do a brisk business renting Indian videos. In Gaithersburg, there's another small grocery in Quince Orchard shopping center (124 and 117) behind the Magruders and Circuit City, and just over from a Russian store. If nothing else, they usually have a good variety of MTR heat-and-eat items, useful for emergency kits and the can't-escape-office-for-lunch drawer. Finally, rumor has it that there's a really good Indian grocery somewhere in Germantown, on Wisteria somewhat west of 118, but I haven't reconnoitered it yet.

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Are there any good Indian grocery stoes in the western part of the county (i.e., Rockville, Gaithersburg, and Bethesda)?

I just happened across Krishna groceries -- 808 Hungerford Drive in Rockville, 301-738-6444. It's a short walk from the Rockville Metro. The owner is very friendly and quite helpful. I highly recommend it.

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I just happened across Krishna groceries -- 808 Hungerford Drive in Rockville, 301-738-6444. It's a short walk from the Rockville Metro. The owner is very friendly and quite helpful. I highly recommend it.
Never mind - Someone else made the same suggestion upthread.
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Finally, rumor has it that there's a really good Indian grocery somewhere in Germantown, on Wisteria somewhat west of 118, but I haven't reconnoitered it yet.
It's called Raina's, and I think it's behind the Lancaster Market. We've had good success there with fresh curry leaves and aged Basmati. Also, there's the relatively new Bombay Grocery on Nelson Street in Rockville, right next to Hard Times, that has wonderful sweets and very spicy Samosas.
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It's called Raina's, and I think it's behind the Lancaster Market.

Actually, I was thinking of India Gourmet (13220 Wisteria Dr, Germantown), in the Churchill Business Center at Wisteria and Father Hurley. It's big; bigger than any other Indian grocery I've seen in MoCo. Will have to make a mental note to go back. A bit thin on housewares (unless you were looking for a hand-cranked coconut scraper) but quite a variety of spices, grains, daal, pickles and chutneys, and other semi-prepared items. The back of the store has a couple of unfinished departments for videos, meat and fish, and produce.

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Danny's Tandahan (no relation), at the (almost) SE corner of Wisconsin just south of Van Ness. Owner says he's been there 11 months-I work around the corner and just noticed it. It's Filipino/Japanese, with some cool spices/sauces, and candies/sweets. They also have some frozen dumplings, some eels, some Filipino baked goods, and Salt & Vinegar flavored Cracklin's. My favorites are the instant rice pudding in a cup (CupSarap), and the beef marrow-flavored noodle bowl (Bulalo) (comes with crackers inside). A nice neighborhood option.

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Ok, not what you're looking for, but... I love the Yekta market (Persian/middle eastern) next door to Joe's Noodle House (355 a bit north of congressional plaza and on the east side of the street in a weird strip mall that faces north, not the pike). Great feta, olives, bread, halvah.

After a great meal at Joe's on Saturday, I stopped in this market to check it out. When I move to Rockville at the end of the month, I'll be stopping here regularly. The produce can be a bit beat up, but there are some nice finds. Plums, nectarines, fava beans, and Persian limes all looked excellent. The nectarines and plums were so juicy I'd suggest eating them while showering if you don't want to get sticky. I also picked up some huge pistachios ( ;) ) and they actually had fresh almonds (anyone who knows what to do with these things, please let me know). A quart of sour cherry nectar was $1.69. Mix that with some sparkling water and you have a tasty soda. I plan on trying the big bags of frozen shelled favas and the oils/vinegars. They also had Persian cookbooks, so I'll have to buy one and start trying out the exotic spices and other mysterious items.

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Bestway Supermarket recently opened on Telegraph Rd. at Hungtington Rd., just below the Beltway. As expected, lots of fresh produce with Latino emphasis. Prices were great, with lemons 4/$1, big bunch cilantro $.50.

There were many milk product; all sorts of creams, quesos.

Beans, spices, banana leaves, corn husks..

Baked goods are not made on premises. No bakery.

Excellent resource for beef and chicken stock with chicken organs, necks, wings , feet etc, and beef oxtail, neck bones.

Fish section with head on shrimp, and several varieties of fish, all of which looked and smelled fresh. I was very tempted to get red snapper, but had a meal planned already based on farmer's market purchases.

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A quart of sour cherry nectar was $1.69. Mix that with some sparkling water and you have a tasty soda. I plan on trying the big bags of frozen shelled favas and the oils/vinegars.

The grocery by Yekta is also a handy source for orange blossom- and rose-waters, for Persian sweets (like toot), and for surprisingly inexpensive bottles of grapeseed oil (IIRC "Sadaf" brand).

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and they actually had fresh almonds (anyone who knows what to do with these things, please let me know)

I meant to clarify this: these almonds were still in the green almost peach-like whoozywhatzit that they are originally "packaged" in. What do you do with those things? Can you eat the fruit?

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I meant to clarify this: these almonds were still in the green almost peach-like whoozywhatzit that they are originally "packaged" in. What do you do with those things? Can you eat the fruit?
They have these at the Lebanese Butcher in Falls Church as well. I have no idea what you do with them, but would also like to find out.
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They have these at the Lebanese Butcher in Falls Church as well. I have no idea what you do with them, but would also like to find out.
I might try recipe searches and plugging in references to the Middle East (Lebanese, Persian...) or Sicily..or India, perhaps, re almond milk. I imagine there are drinks, custards and pilafs. Here's one idea from David Lebovitz which suggests the French are into green almonds, too. Lots of comments, so there might be more ideas there. Please report back and thanks for letting us know about your find.

ETA: There's a picture of green almonds on the cover of the Zuni Café cookbook. Served raw with good, thin slices of prosciutto and nectarines--unless it's just a still-life.

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They have these at the Lebanese Butcher in Falls Church as well. I have no idea what you do with them, but would also like to find out.

I just take off the flesh, crack open the shell, and eat the nut. The green flesh is inedible. Fresh almonds have a slightly more pronounced bitter almond flavor than dried.

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Clear up any confusion about your endocarps and exocarps here.

Almonds are related to peaches. Who knew?

(I didn't, until I found out I was allergic to stone fruits ;) )

Seriously, I'll have to check this place out--I'm always looking for a good place to get grapeseed oil. I often end up getting it from Rodman's, but would like to compare the price.

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I just take off the flesh, crack open the shell, and eat the nut. The green flesh is inedible. Fresh almonds have a slightly more pronounced bitter almond flavor than dried.
I bought some green almonds at the above mentioned grocery three weeks ago. Did as you suggested, broke them open and ate the nut meat. It really wasn't all that appealing, not very almondy, sort of sour. Maybe they were too green, but how would one know?
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I bought some green almonds at the above mentioned grocery three weeks ago. Did as you suggested, broke them open and ate the nut meat. It really wasn't all that appealing, not very almondy, sort of sour. Maybe they were too green, but how would one know?

Hmmm... perhaps they weren't ripe enough? Alas, I think that green almonds are one of those things to be enjoyed fresh off the tree... Too bad we can't grow them here...

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