If You’re In
If you find yourself in D.C., and it happens to be Sunday, wake up when the sun does and go to Eastern Market on 7th Street, Southeast. It’s an everything market from produce, cheese, and meat to pottery, plants, antiques, and flea market odds and ends. Have coffee and breakfast at the market, but buy things for a picnic lunch later on. Take a long walk down Independence Avenue and up the steps of the Capitol Building, overlooking the National Mall. Then head to Ford’s Theater, where Lincoln was shot, and take the tour. There are a million historic tours in D.C., but this one is the best. You’ll be just a few minutes from the White House now, so walk by and wave to the First Family. You might also visit the nearby Newseum — a history of media in the world.
If you have a sweet craving, it’s worth the trip to Warren Brown’s CakeLove on U Street for mid-day coconut cake and coffee. The walk from there to the National Zoo is only about twenty-five minutes. Part of the Smithsonian, the zoo is free to enter and many Washingtonians use it like a park; as a place to walk, jog, or picnic.
Have lunch at the Wharf and Fish Market on Maine Avenue on the water. A working fish market that operates on floating barges, you can buy fresh seafood, but there are also great vendors with fried fish and shrimp, crabcake sandwiches, fish chowder, shucked raw oysters, and all sorts of delicious lunch options. Don’t expect a table; just find a spot at the stand-up bar that wraps around the wharf. Later, head to the FDR Memorial by the Cherry Trees along the tidal basin. It’s a relatively new, built in 1997, and one of the best memorials with four outdoor sections that take you through FDR’s era in office.
Dining in DC tends to be either very high- or very low-brow. For casual but expert in the middle, we go to Central Michel Richard for warm gougéres and country paté or head to Proof for the cheese selection alone.
But no matter what, don’t miss a chance to check out what the cowgirls are wrangling up in the cheese and wine corral over at Cowgirl Creamery. —Julie