must-not-miss artisan treats at P Street Whole Foods or nearby markets
I'm visiting this week from SF and staying near P St. Whole Foods. What are your favorite local artisan treats (savory or sweet) available at Whole Foods? This week I'll be eating on the run or in my hotel room a lot, so I'm looking more for prepared foods than for ingredients.
I think the prepared foods at WF usually look way better than they taste.
I usually get their prepared sushi (I try to time my visit to the sushi counter so I see what the guy is making, then snag one of those as soon as he puts them in the case, to assure I'm getting something really fresh, so that the rice is right).
Their soups aren't too bad. I usually get the lobster bisque.
At the salad bar I've been burned a lot of times by getting something that looks good, but isn't. I usually stick to the basic vegetables. The hearts of palm salad and the caprese are OK.
I also sometimes get 1/4 lb. of tuna salad (the one that has a lot of black olives is the best, I think) and an olive roll or Portuguese roll from the bread bins to make a sandwich.
You are very close to a lot of really good restaurants: Estadio and Birch and Barley on 14th St., for example. Churchkey, above Birch and Barley, has the best beer selection in town.
Enjoy your stay!
Birch and Barley
1337 14th Street, NW, Washington, DC 20005
Thanks -- but I meant to ask something a little different and should clarify.
Are there locally known small-batch products that are sold at Whole Foods? At San Francisco - area Whole Foods, for example, one can find Kika's Treats, a line of handmade cookies that is delicious but too small-scale for distribution outside of the area. Years ago in Boston, Dancing Deer cookies would fall into the same category, though they're nationally distributed now. That's what I had in mind -- packaged cookies, savory snacks, spreads, pickles, and other foods that show off local flavor and creativity, that might also be sold at farmers' markets and underground markets but happen to be stocked at Whole Foods.
And I will be checking out local restaurants, too, but my request was more for items I could buy when I arrive and have for breakfasts or while running between meetings in the following days. (And I totally agree that the WF deli counter / salad bar prepared foods can disappoint!)
re: david kaplan
Cava Mezze middle eastern dips and spreads. This is a local Mediterranean restaurant and their tabbouleh is fantastic, as are their other items.
Also, at least out in the Maryland stores, there is a fantastic goat cheese produced locally - has a line of ash running through it.
Cherry Glen Goat Cheese Company, Boyds, Maryland
Cherry Glen Farm managers their own herd of goats from which they produce their Cherry Glen Chevre and the soft ripened Monocacy Silver, Gold, and Ash cheeses. Their cheese is available at Whole Foods Market and Roots (Olney).
Cava mediterranean spreads are very good. They'll be with the hummus next to the orange juice (adjoining the frozen food section).