Shuttered restaurants spawn drive-thru market in Loudoun County

The fresh produce, large boxes of meat, poultry, seafood and beer that usually end up being served in some of the D.C. area’s finest restaurants could be finding their way to your home.

With restaurants shuttered during the coronavirus pandemic due to restrictions on public gatherings, local food distributors are looking for other ways to move their products. Meanwhile, families are limiting frequent trips to grocery chains, which have been working to maintain social distancing while keeping shelves, freezers and bins full.

One solution: A drive-thru market in Loudoun County, Virginia, where shoppers can order online then pick up boxes of restaurant-quality food without physical contact during the transaction, and distributors can expand their customer base.

Shoppers place their orders and pay ahead of time from participating distributors — Profish Ltd., Metropolitan Meat, Seafood & Poultry Company, Coastal Sunbelt and Bear Chase Brewing Company — and pick them up Friday morning at The National Conference Center in Lansdowne.

The offerings are tempting, and limited only by the size of your freezer or refrigerator: A family pack of boneless chicken breast, Mahi Mahi, sirloin steak and pork chops is $33. Waygu Beef with black truffle ravioli is $138 per case.

For $25, a box of fruit includes:

  • 1 pineapple
  • 1 honeydew
  • 1 cantaloupe
  • 1 pack blueberries
  • 4 oranges
  • 4 apples
  • 2 lemons
  • 2 limes
  • 4 pears
  • Approximately 2 pounds of grapes
  • 1 pack strawberries

From 10 a.m. until noon, buyers will pick up their orders in the traffic circle at the conference center’s West Belmont Place. Customers are asked to stay in their vehicles and pop their trunks while their orders are brought to them.

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Neal Augenstein

Neal Augenstein has been a reporter at WTOP since 1997. Through the years, Neal has covered many of the crimes and trials that have gripped the region. Neal's been pleased to receive awards over the years for hard news, feature reporting, use of sound and sports.

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