Snack on oysters, dumplings, and charcuterie under one roof
The food hall trend arrived in earnest this past October with the opening of Mt. Vernon Marketplace. The bare-bones industrial space (that once housed a famed Baltimore department store) is filled with food and drink concepts that haven’t yet found a permanent home. The traveling seafood cart The Local Oyster serves salty-sweet Skinny Dipper oysters, overflowing shrimp salad sandwiches, and zippy crab soup your grandma would make. Pinch Dumplings, which debuted in DC farmers’ markets, serves unbelievably crispy fried pork dumplings, colorful Asian slaw, and salty boiled peanuts. There’s Cultured, an outpost of Hampden’s Corner Charcuterie Bar, with artistic meat-and-cheese plates and mouth-watering sandwiches. If you get thirsty, visit Taps Fill Station in the back with 10 rotating taps of beer, cider, mead, cold-brew coffee, wine, and even olive oil. Talk about a one-stop shop.
Enjoy French delicacies in Station North
Local diners have been raving about Bottega, a tiny, authentic Italian bistro in Station North, since its debut in 2013. Thankfully, owner Adrien Aeschliman is opening another restaurant just down the street, this time focusing on French cuisine. The eatery, called Colette, will open this month and boasts chef Stefano Porcile, who had previous stints at Woodberry Kitchen and Fork & Wrench. Think French delicacies like calamari salad, goat cheese fritters, fried artichokes, raclette (yes, scrapings of melted cheese), and other food inspired by Aeschliman’s three years living in Avignon. Fortunately for diners, Colette will be four times the size of baby Bottega and likely just as delicious.