Nothing gets residents here out of bed on the weekend like a farmers market. wash- ingtonians are simply crazy over locally sourced and organic food—part of their
obsession with all things healthy.
last year, Forbes named washington the second-
healthiest city in america, and in the two years prior,
the capital city nabbed the top spot.
fueling the health kick, in part, is a growing appre-
ciation for the city’s natural gems. the potomac river
and the vast expanse of green around it are luring more
people into such activities as kayaking, rock climbing
and biking. and there’s the restaurant boom—D.c. has
about 140 more restaurants and taverns (excluding
those without liquor licenses) than it did four years ago,
according to the restaurant association metropolitan
washington. innovative chefs are helping to elevate
washington’s taste for quality, organic ingredients.
Splendor in the GraSS
the splendors of this city aren’t only for those who
live near them, however. washington offers plenty of
reasons for anyone with a little energy and a willing
appetite to get outside, get active and enjoy some local
(and good-for-you) flavors.
the Dupont circle farmers market is a great place
to start. Vendors here sell everything from produce to
pasta to soap. melanie Dietrich cochran of keswick
creamery is one such vendor. she woke before dawn
and drove two hours from south-central pennsylvania
to sell her 22 varieties of aged cheese. the Dupont market is one of five she sells at in the D.c. area.
“it’s a real challenge for farmers to compete with
resellers, so markets like this are important to level
the playing field,” cochran tells me as shoppers flow
into her booth to sample cheeses such as British-style
lesher and italian herb feta.
bikers and dog-walkers find Rock
Creek Park a
welcome oasis in an
at a ready-made food stand nearby, a young couple
scarfs down empanadas. they sport spandex shorts and
stretch while they eat. they are among a sporty contingent that appears to have come to the market via one of
the nearby biking trails.
of the hundreds of intertwining miles of biking
trails in the D.c. metro area—and i’ve biked or run
almost all of them—rock creek park trail is my favorite, and luckily it’s a short distance from the market if
you follow p street west. the trail spans 25 miles from
D.c. to maryland.
if you enter the trail near Dupont, you can head south
toward the national mall or north toward the national
stuart pearce/age fotostock; mark file; laura george
opposite page:caitlin faw