Does anyone know of a bulk spice retailer? I have not been able to find one anywhere near Baltimore, although I have to admit, I would probably drive to VA to get my hands on some sumac. Thanks.
You can buy massive quantities of traditional spices [parsley, oregano, pepper flakes, pepper, salt, etc] at any wholesale club. For more obscure items, such as sumac berries, I would recommend an online store. It will be far cheaper than anything you can obtain in NoVA or Maryland.
You can get it at Shemali's which used to be on Wisconsin next to the Tenley Giant and Murphy's: it has moved to New Mexico Av., in the indoor mall where the Ace wine shop and Tree Top Toys are (next door to Sutton Place Gourmet). You can also get sumac at Rodman's. I know they have it in the DC Friendship Heights store. You might call the White Flint/Rockville store to see if they have it there. Otherwise, try Penzeys Spices catalog (800)741-7787, or online (link below).
There is a place in Baltimore, but it's not as good as the Golden Temple used to be, before it closed--much to my sadness--about a year ago.
I'm out of town now, and I don't remember the name of this place, but I think it's on Allegehny, or on one of those cross streets in Towson, a block west of York Road. It's actually part health food store, but they have pretty much any spice you might like. The one thing I don't like about this store, and which makes it different from most bulk spice retailers, is that you can't help yourself. A clerk has to do it for you. Still, if you're desperate, as I was about two months ago, it'll work. Another idea, depending on where you are, is the Fresh Fields in Annapolis, which is far superior, and much, much larger, than the one in Mt. Washington.