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Eastern Market- best food?

I am going to Eastern Market next weekend. I have never been and I am looking forward to it. Seems like a lot to see/eat. What are the best places to eat for breakfast, lunch, brunch, dessert or snack? Anything from casual sit-down to grabbing a quality bite to walk around with. I just do not want to miss out on the BEST food there, so please let me know what you all recommend. Thanks so much.

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  1. really love Cafe 8 for Mediterranean/Turkish, so good. Ugly Mug has good bar food, their sliders are IMHO the best of all the sports bars around. haven't been to the new matchbox there yet but it's supposed to be a fine place to eat.

    1. Well bluebucks (blueberry buckwheat pancakes) are a staple at Market Lunch. The cheese are the cheese place in the market is fantastic with some bread from next door and some salami. There is this one blend they make I forget what it is, I want to say a blend of parm and something else that is great. They have some great interesting blends. They have some decent black and whites at the bakery. The spiced nuts are ok, but nothing like you get down south. The crepes are good too.

      12 Replies
      1. re: ktmoomau

        kt - you're referring to what Bower's call a Gouda Parmesan mix. it's really something else altogether, but it does go well on either crackers or cooked in pasta. kinda semi-hard so it can be grated or sliced - versatile. I often ask for the weirdest cheese they have (shy of Limburger). and hide it from the SO. Then I sleep in the guest room "there was this great movie I haven't seen since I was a kid and I didn't want to wake you" heh.

        I wandered Pain Quotidien today, it looks nice and much cozier than B+C ever did. but I give props to the SBE operators and prefer them.

        and I fully endorse all the other recs on this thread so far. (ok haven't been to Ugly Mug yet) and we have seen actual Peregrine Falcons around the 'hood.

        1. re: hill food

          Is Pain Quotidien open? If so about how big is the space? Call me crazy but I want to meet some friends in the city Monday for Brunch/Lunch/Coffee where we can sit and observe all the madness and talk smack about tourists (yea yea we are bad people I know, but it's fun). We thought about Cafe Atlantico since we can make a res, but... I don't mind waiting for a table to oogle.

          1. re: ktmoomau

            PQ has a smaller seating space than B+C had (bigger kitchen) but there is a long communal table down the middle.

            1. re: hill food

              LPQ's open now with about 60-70 seats if I recall correctly. Love their omelets, go for the Ham and Gruyere or the Salmon and Scallion. Expect a wait, though - it is HOPPING.

              1. re: oneautumnday

                I like the mushroom & gruyere omelette myself. I went to the bethesda location!

              2. re: hill food

                Had great MLK day brunch at Cafe Atlantico, they gave us a table upstairs by the window where we spent the afternoon boozing up eating and staring at the madness out the window- like the glitter hats and TV cameramen reporting from beside the large rows of porta-potties. It was great I think we were there for like 3-4 hours drinking and eating. I am happy about PQ as Bread and Chocolate was certainly nothing special. We decided to forego Hill madness, so hill food how is the bread? ;)

                1. re: ktmoomau

                  I'll get back to you...jury hasn't been convened yet (was going to make clam chowder tonight and check it out, but the seafood counter was closed - on to plan B)

              1. re: Hal Laurent

                previous tenant - Bread and Chocolate. wasn't bad, but no love lost.

                1. re: hill food

                  Thanks for the translation. Crytic initals aren't always clear to everyone.

                2. re: Hal Laurent

                  Bread and Chocolate...use to be in the space where Pain Quotidien is in Eastern Market.

                3. re: hill food

                  The cheese at Bowers you're referring to is Parano. It's good but your can get it at most supermarkets.

              2. oh oh also, i think a reasonably short stroll from eastern market is this wonderful diner called Jimmy T's

                1. You should certainly check out Market Lunch for lunch or breakfast. Their bluebucks are legendary and I also really like their crab cake platter.

                  There's a new bar/restaurant across from Barrack's Row called Lola's, which is pumping out some very impressive food. And Matchbox just opened for pizza and miniburgers.

                  Old Siam is pretty good for Thai.

                  1. Do step outside of Eastern Market and walk up the street towards Pennsylvania Avenue and help yourself to the best coffee in all of DC. Peregrine may well be one of the top ten/twenty coffee shops in the country. Try one of their gorgeous cappuccinos.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Treva

                      Thanks for these great suggestions, Everyone. I am especially looking forward to trying the bluebucks. My brother will be in town and i want to take him to Eastern Market, in part because I have never been there myself, and I live here. Other restaurants for dinners include our favorite Matchbox (the first one), Founding Farmers (was there recently and liked it-fun menu), Tenpenh (haven't been there in years but enjoyed my last meal there) and either Granville Moore or Bistro D'OC (never been to either.) Any thoughts about these places or others I may have missed??? Thanks!