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Misitam or Eastern Market

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Traveling to DC tomorrow with out town guest (South African) and she is wanting to experience DC. In addition to traditional sight seeing, I want to take her for lunch. She will have options later in her stay for BBQ and crab cakes but can anyone suggest which of these 2 places is best for Saturday? I have never been to either. Thanks in advance.

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  1. That's a tough one. It all depends what kind of atmosphere she'd be most comfortable with. If she doesn't mind Eastern Market's noisy surroundings and crowded communal tables, go with that. If she wants something more along the lines of a traditional cafeteria, take her to the Indian Museum.

    1. 2 very different things.

      if she has the opp for more mainstream american later, maybe do the museum cafe. (ok I'm turning in my card as an Eastern Market enthusiast).

      or heck, both!

      1. Since I don't think much of the cafeteria, or even the museum itself, I would say anywhere else. Not sure what the situation is at Eastern Market since the fire.

        3 Replies
        1. re: Steve

          Thanks so much everyone....does anyone know about the status of the market today and the fire? Is it open?

          1. re: hammocc

            Eastern Market's "East" building is a new (and very nice) temporary structure which will be in place until the old South Hall gets restored. Market Lunch is wonderful and very DC. I would absolutely take an out of town guest there.
            And get a crabcake sandwich there too!
            Let us know how you did!

            1. re: monavano

              the Market is BACK - different in small ways and (oddly) too clean but at least the new hall has a sprinkler system and HVAC. Mrs. Calomiri is just so cute, Jack (cheese counter) is as irascible as ever, the Inman's willl be distracted during ball games and Canales stilll cheerful.

        2. i agree w/ everyone else that they are very different experiences. i really like Mitsitam. I think the food is quite great esp for a museum cafeteria. Maybe you could ask her what her fave kinds of food are and then decide from there. Since shes already getting the down home southern thing later in her stay maybe Mitsitam would be better -- it's certainly unique!

          1 Reply
          1. re: DCDOLL

            Certainly an apples vs. oranges choice, for me the tiebreaker would be if the visitor was curious about native american cultures. it's far from perfect, but I enjoy all the choices and regional areas. We all love EM and the food is fine market food (and I take guests there), but it's not a slam dunk call.

          2. I personally would prefer to go to Misitam for lunch and then you can walk around Eastern Market and pick up snacks afterward (who says you can't do both??)

            Misitam is just so unique and has food from all the regions of the US. Plus its really tasty and there is more then enough space to sit.