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Searching for Unique DC Treats to Bring Home

Now that I've used chowhound to compile a week-long list of gluttony at the best restaurants in town, I need to figure out what I'm going to bring back home to LA for the friends and family!

I'm looking for some delicious treats (salty or sweet, doesn't matter as long as it's YUM) that aren't easily found elsewhere. For example, when I visit Chicago, I bring home a big bag of Garrett's popcorn. New York City? Maybe a box of cookies from Ferrera's in Little Italy. It's just not fair that I get to be a pig for a week. I need to share the love, too. :-)

Oh yeah, and I need suggestions for treats that will keep for a few days, so cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcake or Baked & Wired won't work for me, unfortunately.

Help! Suggestions, pleeeeease!

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  1. Although I'm up in the Baltimore area, we always take back to Illinois three things: 1.) UTZ crab chips (potato chips seasoned with crab seasoning), 2. Berger cookies and a variety of different Tastycakes (and yes I know they're a philly thing).

    3 Replies
    1. re: Chippewa29

      ooo! Can I find these chips at a market in DC or do I have to go all the way out to Baltimore? I think I saw another posting regarding the Berger cookies. Will follow up. Thanks!

      1. re: urbanshopper

        Yes, you can find those chips at most markets and some delis in DC.

        1. re: urbanshopper

          they sell both at Giant Supermarkets now

      2. Unique D.C. treats??

        Hmmm...

        Sadly, as a native Washingtonian I have to admit....there are none.

        1. Some Old Bay seasoning for steaming crabs/shrimp when you get home

          1. DC just doesn't have much of a local food identity, and it sounds like you can't bring home a pack of Half-Smokes. Everything suggested so far may as well be Baltimore associated.

            2 Replies
            1. re: MsDiPesto

              Actually, I should add I'm perfectly fine with food not literally being unique to DC. Unique to the "area" is just as good, so bring on the Baltimore treats! *ahem* well, the ones I can BUY IN DC. Unfortunately, I won't have time to visit the neighboring areas this trip. :(

              1. re: urbanshopper

                You can buy Berger Cookies at the Italian Store in Arlington. They also have Martin's chips, which are from the York PA area. They are great "old school" chips. Look for the waffle chips. Utz chips are easy to find in supermarkets around here; the Crab Chips are definitely a local treat.

                You should also try to pick up some Route 11 chips, which are made out in the Shenandoah Valley (through which US Route 11 runs). They are outstanding. Route 11 chips are to VA what Zapp's chips are to LA (the state not the city), if that makes any sense.

                I guess we eat a lot of chips around here, huh?

            2. yep. half-smoke is gonna be your best bet. if you can't find a way to pull it off, there's really no other option. i'd look into having half-smokes shipped, if your goal is to bring back something truly regional, no matter the cost. about the chips, while they do capture a flavor of the region, you can get them anywhere in the world, where UTZ are sold.

              1. Chocolates and caramels from Giffords is the best I can come up with.

                1. Velati's caramels.

                  1. I'll second Velati's caramels.

                    The Blue Crab Bay Co. makes wonderful products. I think their best seller is called "Barnacles" a snack mix seasoned with a crab spice. Shuckers are delicious sweet and spicy pecans.

                    ETA: If you want to save some space and weight hauling stuff home, here's the web site for you to do mail order: http://www.bluecrabbay.com/products.a...

                    Bottled jars of Giffords ice cream topping, especially their Swiss Miss sauce.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Indy 67

                      Barnacles really aren't good in comparison to some of their other products, is that really their best seller I would be surprised. When I used to work at Historic Annapolis Foundation when the gift shop got in the products Crab House Crunch sold out in a few days and we always had barnacles. The really good thing is the bloody mary mix and the Crab House Crunch which is peanut brittle with old bay.

                    2. Wye River makes a bunch of great products. Crabbers are a nice twist on Goldfish. If you can't find them just have them ship some home.

                      http://www.wyeriverseasonings.com/

                      1. I've heard the the independent supermarket in Chevy Chase Lakes (on Connecticut Ave) carries Orell's beaen biscuits, which are an Eastern Shore thing, but I've never checked it out.

                        You can get Velati's at the Bethesda Farmwomens Market (on Saturday), where you can also find Stonyman cheese. The harder ones migh travel.

                        1. Thanks, all. To report back, I got the UTZ crab chips and Route 11 chips (boy, were they a pain to lug back), Berger cookies (yuuuuuuum), and caramels and chocolates from Gifford's. Since I couldn't bring back the half-smokes I just ate 'em there myself. Also ate me a Tastykake.

                          Found Martin's chips but not the waffle ones so didn't buy, and couldn't make it out of DC to go retrieve Velati caramels or Blue Crab Bay treats. Next trip!

                          1. hey you can get Faidley's Seafood Market in Lexington Market in Baltimore to ship to you home made crab cakes ready for cooking. Google Faidley's and you can order them over the web and you would be getting the best the area has to offer. By the way, there is also a Berger Cookie stand in Lexington Market as well as an Utz potato chip stand where you can buy very fresh chips.