Bread Street in Old City has been one of our favorite little streets for quite some time. This cobblestone-lined path is the rare one-block street in this town, running north-south between 2nd and 3rd Streets, starting at Arch Street and ending forever at Race Street. With Paddy’s Pub on the Race Street side and construction progressing at 229 Arch St. on the opposite end, there’s a surprising amount of action happening on this relatively hidden block. And it looks like even more folks will be traipsing this way soon enough to reach 146-48 N. Bread St., with Riverwards Produce opening their second location here in the coming months.
Riverwards Produce has become a staple of the Fishtown community, opening in 2016 and quickly endearing itself to the neighborhood. They focus on sourcing local ingredients and produce while also offering bulk goods, meats, breads and more, all at a number of different price points. Through their Instagram, owner Vincent Finazo has shared interior shots and offered his wonderful take on his vision for what a market should be. We’ll let his words do the talking:
“There is something about saving a space and breathing new life into it that just feels intrinsic to what a market is. The new Riverwards is being restored meticulously and historically registered so that it can be enjoyed by the public for years to come.”
To be clear, Riverwards Produce hasn’t officially confirmed this address, but has been slowly teasing information about their upcoming Old City spot online. This piqued our curiosity, so we decided to do a little exploring ourselves to confirm the rumors. Zoning permits for the site appear to confirm our suspicions, having been approved last year for retail food, beverage, and grocery sales. Aframe Constructs is the contractor and they’ve brought us the likes of Wm. Mulherin’s Sons, Good Spoon Soupery and Pizzeria Beddia among others, so we have a pretty good idea of the quality of work to expect. Check out some exterior progress below.
Given that this is a contributing building within a historical district, we expect this to really look sharp once things are completed. The former forge, constructed in the early 20th century, now sports Georgetown green trim, forming a striking contrast with the original red brick. We are happy to see that the building will retain its original character, as a proposal for a four-story addition by Assimilation Design Lab was submitted to the Architectural Committee of the Historical Commission back in January 2019, but ultimately didn’t move forward.
While Old City might be right in the thick of things location-wise, this market will be welcomed with open arms given the limited grocery options in the neighborhood (though we will always have a special place for the beloved Sassafras and Mulberry Markets). Add in the off-the-beaten-path element, and new Riverward Produce will not only add to the local grocery mix, but will also offer a certain IYKYK quality that should attract business from outside the neighborhood as well. Whether it’s locals or not, we have a feeling that the foot traffic on Bread Street will be increasing soon enough, with the opening tentatively planned for Spring 2022.