Lexington Market. Photo courtesy of Baltimore Public Markets.
Lexington Market. Photo courtesy of Baltimore Public Markets.

At least three Maryland food businesses are in the running in separate categories of the USA TODAY 10Best Readers’ Choice 2023 competition.

Mount Vernon Marketplace in Baltimore is vying for readers’ votes in the “Best Food Hall” category.

The building that houses the marketplace was once home to Hochschild Kohn & Co., Baltimore’s largest department store for much of the 20th century.

Years after the department store’s closure, developers repurposed the building and the Mount Vernon Marketplace opened in the renovated space in 2015.

The marketplace’s tenants include Munchin Burger, Chung Chun, Godakk, Poke 2U, Sbread, JD’s House of Bacon, Brown Rice, Centre Bar, Cheezy Mike’s, Cholitas Tacos, Fishnet, Fresh Monday’s, Mr. Nice Pie, Slurpin’ Ramen, SmoQ-N-Meat BBQ, Taps Fill Station, The Local Oyster, and TigerLilly Shop.

Also in Baltimore, Lexington Market is competing in the “Best Public Market” category. The market unveiled its new look earlier this year after major renovations.

Opened in 1782, Lexington Market is one of the world’s oldest continuously operating public markets. It is part of the Baltimore Public Market System, which also includes Avenue Market, Cross Street Market, Broadway Market, Hollins Market, and Northeast Market.

Located in downtown Baltimore, Lexington Market is home to nearly 40 merchants as well as currently six pop-up kiosks.

Outside of the Baltimore area, Maryland continues to be represented in this year’s USA TODAY competition by Island Creamery, which is in the running for “Best Ice Cream Shop.”

The creamery has two locations on Maryland’s Eastern Shore, in Berlin and Salisbury. It also has a shop on Chincoteague Island, Virginia, which was its original location when it opened in 1975.

Island Creamery is currently in first place on the leaderboard for its category. 

Mount Vernon Marketplace and Lexington Market are currently 12th and 18th on the leaderboards for their respective categories.

Voting for the “Best Ice Cream Shop” category will close June 26 at noon (ET), and the winner will be announced July 7. 

Voting will close July 3 at noon (ET) for the “Best Food Hall” and “Best Public Market” categories, with the winners of both categories announced on July 14.

A panel of experts selected the 20 nominees for each category. Readers can vote once per category per day.

Marcus Dieterle is the managing editor of Baltimore Fishbowl. He returned to Baltimore in 2020 after working as the deputy editor of the Cecil Whig newspaper in Elkton, Md. He can be reached at marcus@baltimorefishbowl.com...