Young and Hungry

Young & Hungry Dining Guide by the Day: The General Store


One by one, we’re running through the 50 restaurants that made the cut on this year’s Young & Hungry Dining Guide. If you have visited the day’s featured restaurant, let us know what you think. If you’re planning to visit for the first time, tell us about your meal when you return.

Gillian Clark and partner Robin Smith had to wage battles on several fronts to finally launch their folksy eatery, the General Store, in the former Forest Glen post office in Silver Spring. Montgomery County, historic preservationists, even the landlord—everyone, it seems, wanted to tell Clark and Smith how to build out the 19th-century structure, down to the exact number of parking spaces they needed. It was enough to make Clark and Smith want to walk away from their project, which they seriously considered doing. I’m glad they stuck with it. The joint exudes a sort of sterile country vibe, part old-timey kitsch and part burn-unit clean, but Clark’s food remains as down-home and comfy as ever. Well, when she still has some to sell. The General Store has already developed a reputation for running out of its famed fried chicken before closing time; fortunately, there are tasty backup options. I’m thinking specifically about Clark’s chunky tarragon chicken-salad sandwich, which employs the namesake herb without allowing its anise flavors to dominate, as they so often do. The fish tacos are an excellent handheld bite, too, stuffed to capacity with fried whitefish, avocado, and melted cheese. At this point, the only unresolved issue for Clark and Smith is the opening of the downstairs Post Office Tavern. But even that hurdle will be cleared by next week, when the pub officially opens to the public, serving up pizzas, brats, and other beery foods.

The General Store, 6 Post Office Road, Silver Spring (301) 562-8787

Photo by Darrow Montgomery

  • xcanuck

    Yay!! The Tavern finally opens! Glad to hear they got all the problems resolved.

    I really do like the food here, though I'm not as crazy about the fried chicken as everyone else seems to be. My "go to" dish are the fish tacos. The liberal dose of avocado makes the difference. The lemon chess pie is my favorite dessert. The filling is wonderfully tart.

    The food is pricier than local counterparts like the Woodside Deli but you're getting better ingredients and quality of cooking. So you get what you pay for.

    I'm hoping that the back patio area will have some Tavern seating. I have a feeling that the opening of the Tavern will turn me from occasional customer to regular.