Full Time Farmer’s Market in the District
How nice it is to enter a grocery store and not be bombarded with brightly packaged goods, produce that is wildly out of season and bright, glistening, enormous aisles. On the contrary, what a relief it is to find a market place that feels like a full-time farmer’s market where you feel as though you’ve previously met each producer. What a surprise to find out that you can find this place in D.C., and on 14th Street NW of all places: welcome to Smucker Farms of Lancaster.
Smucker Farms of Lancaster opened shop at 14th and V Streets NW in Spring 2011. Though about an eighth of the size of your traditional grocery store, it supplies absolutely all of your grocery necessities, as well as endless unique food finds. This peaceful market showcases seasonal produce, meats, pickles, flours, dry goods, dairy, breads, sauces, handmade pretzels, coffee, kombucha, baked goods, granola, beer, wine, vinegars and popcorn, to name a few.
It’s a market without the junk food; you name it, they’ve probably got it — except for those commercially processed foods that make up the entire middle section of other grocery stores. Smucker’s Farm is a true treasure chest of regional artisanal foods: instead of Utz’s pretzels you’ll find a handmade pretzels from Lancaster, rather than Orville Redinbacher’s, opt for Emma’s peanut butter and chocolate popcorn mix, and instead of maple syrup flavored corn syrup, grab some Grade A Amber Syrup from Stockin’s Apiary in Strasburg, Pa. And please, PLEASE get Stroopie’s Dutch Stroopwafels — they’re the best thing next to traveling to Amsterdam to get some stroopwafels of your own.
Smucker Farms proudly sources primarily from Lancaster, Pa., as well as D.C., and you can get a feel for each producer on every bottle, jar or package and maybe even the names of every cow and chicken and turkey you’re about to roast. While the prices may be a bit higher than your average grocery bill, the welcoming environment, genuine staff and incredibly high quality ingredients, not to mention the quality of life of the producer, are all worth your extra five bucks.