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Jan 28, 2006 05:44 PM

Chinese Market in Wheaton/Rockville?

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I spent the whole day trying to find fermented black beans with no luck. I went to Korean Markets and they dont' even know what I'm talking about. I'm finding some mention of Chinese markets in Wheaton and in Rockville by googling, but I can't seem to find specific info of what their names are or exactly where they are located. Can someone help me? Thanks.

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  1. In Rockville, you will find Kam Sam on N. Washington St. just off Hungerford Dr. near the post office, and Maxim which is right on Hungerford Dr. Hungerford Dr. is Rt. 355 in case you aren't familiar with the area.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Terrie H.

      Thanks Terrie, finally found what I wanted at Kam Sam. Liked the store too. Next time I need to stock up on my Chinese ingredients, I go straight there.

      1. re: Lillydu

        Kam San and Maximum are good chinese markets in Rockville, but if merrifield, va is not a far drive for you, I'd recommend you shop at Great Wall instead.

        1. re: CK

          Thanks for the tip, but I'm in Silver Spring.

          1. re: Lillydu

            Ok, but if you're ever in the neighborhood, I'd suggest you stop by. Or, it may be worth a onetime trip. It's by far the biggest and best chinese supermarket in this area. They have live seafood including shrimp, king crab, big head fish, buffalo fish, tilapia, etc., amphibians like frogs and turtles, shellfish like razor clams, snails, cherrystone clams, giant clam, etc. Also, they have the largest and cheapest chinese vegetables around.

            You're near the beltway, so head clockwise towards rt. 50. Take rt. 50 exit and it's your first exit off rt. 50 onto Gallows Road North on your left next to Gold's Gym.

            2982 Gallows Road
            Falls Church, VA

    2. Oddly, I just bought fermented black bean sauce for the first time, today, at the Han Ah Rhum in Wheaton. I've been experimenting with Asian-spiced short ribs. They have a large selection of such things, in the aisle with the vinegars and soy sauces. The store is on Georgia about 2-3 blocks south of Randolph.

      3 Replies
      1. re: johnb

        That's one of the places I went yesterday and I didn't see them. And no one knew what I was talking about. I went down that aisle at least 5 times. What were they packaged in?

        1. re: Lillydu

          In case there is any confusion, I'm talking about bean paste not beans as such. It is in various jars, plastic tubs etc. Several brands/sizes/types. I was also looking for beans, as in black bean sauce served in typical chinese dishes where you see the intact beans but did not find that.

          1. re: johnb

            There's a big difference between korean bean sauce vs. chinese(cantonese) fermented beans in the paper orange/yellow containers. The bean paste is primarily used as a condiment, while the fermented beans are used as a flavor enhancer/spice to cantonese dishes.

      2. Fermented black beans are often labelled "salted black beans".

        1 Reply
        1. re: Hal Laurent

          I described them as salted black beans, but they didn't know what I was talking about. I also went to Korean Corner and the guy stocking the shelves said he knew what they were but they didn't have them.

        2. Black bean sauce is readily available at Korean Korner and Han Ah Reum, but actual fermented black beans are less likely to make an appearance. Both stores are strong in Korean and Vietmanese products, but a bit weak in Chinese and Japanese ones. (neither carries Sichuan peppercorns, either)

          I'll second the recommendation for Kam Sam and Maxim in Rockville as better bets. Kam Sam is a little bigger, but neither has the space for the kind of expansive produce and meat/seafood departments you'll find at KK and HAR. You can walk from one to the other, with Bob's Noodle 66 at the halfway point.

          3 Replies
          1. re: coastcat

            I saw the fermented black bean sauce at both of those stores. I was so frustrated. To top that off, I quit smoking yesterday. But I was determined not to let black beans ruin my quit. Yea me.

            As a follow-up, I just called the Maxim in Silver Spring and they don't know what I'm talking about. So I called Kam Sam, yeah, success, I'm on my over there. Kerry (I think that's what he said) said to ask for him.

            1. re: Lillydu

              The one on Washington St. (is that Kam Sam? I think so) has a really friendly manager who helped me find pickled radishes there once after I had spent 10 minutes trolling the same three feet of aisle space.

              Congratulations on quitting smoking!

              1. re: smokey

                They were very friendly and helpful on the phone. So, I did go there earlier today and it was pretty crowded, so I thought I’d look for them before I bothered someone. I pretty much found them right away.

          2. When I googled Asian Markets, I found nothing, but when I search just for Kam Sam, I found a list of Asian Markets in the metro area. Thought someone would be interested.

            It says there's a Maxims in Silver Spring too. That's closer to me than Rockville. I'll see if it's still there.

            Thanks for your help. I'm determined to find my black beans today.


            6 Replies
            1. re: Lillydu

              Please be aware that this website is out of date. For example, it lists Da Hua as the one market in DC, but Da Hua has been closed for quite a while now.

              1. re: Bonz

                When I find restaurants or markets or whatever on lists and haven't seen them before or haven't had them recommended, I usually call first to see if they are still there. That's one of the reasons I called Maxim in Silver Spring because no one had mentioned it and for all I knew it might have not been there anymore. I think it's still better guide than none, unless someone has a more current one.

                1. re: Lillydu

                  Everybody's best bet is probably to pick up a chinese yellow pages at your nearest grocery.

                  1. re: CK

                    There are two Asian grocery stores in the Wheaton/Rockville area. Both are on Georgia Avenue.

                    The first one is Lotte which is at the intersection of Aspen Hill Road in the same shopping center as Outback Steak House. The second is Han Ah Reum (sp?) which is below Glenmont, right near Wheaton Regional Park.

              2. re: Lillydu

                The Maxim's in Silver Spring is now a Hispanic grocery.

                1. re: Lori D

                  See why I called first?