Quirky Del Ray Offers Comfort and Great Eats
It’s not exactly one of DC’s top tourist hot spots, but Del Ray does offer a quirky type of comfort, surrounded by some great places to grab a bite to eat. Most neighborhood businesses are independently owned in this Alexandria neighborhood, and you’ll find many of them packed in along a stretch of Mount Vernon Avenue.
This includes everything from local pizza shops to seasonal American food, supplemented by fresh produce harvested from a rooftop garden. You’ll also find gourmet burgers, barbecue, an adults-only sushi bar and a popular frozen custard shop.
There are a number of coffee shops too, as well as bakeries and even a dog-friendly bar and restaurant located in the area. Local cafes are popular places to run into neighbors and friends, while there’s also a year-round farmer’s market for fresh eats.
A monthly street festival on Thursday nights brings out locals for a fun, community-friendly experience. Along with First Thursday, the annual Art on the Avenue festival helps celebrate the neighborhood’s diversity with live music and artwork.
Unlike traditional chain retailers, you’re more likely to find an eccentric mix of businesses in Del Ray, including one just for hats and a store that specialize in products just for dogs. It’s the kind of neighborhood where you can pick up a comic book or stroll through the aisles of a specialty food store.
The neighborhood is also close enough to Potomac Yard, which opens up the possibility of even more retail and commercial space not too far from home. While Del Ray manages to retain its own unique charm and appeal, it’s also close enough to major roadways and public transportation.
Most housing in Del Ray consists of single-family homes, including bungalows, Colonials, Cape Cods and even Victorians. While demand is high, housing does tend to be more affordable than some other nearby communities in the DC area.