Kimchi, sushi-grade octopus, buckwheat noodles, shrimp crackers, lychee fruit—you'd be more challenged to name an Asian ingredient you can't find at H Mart.
We first discovered this primarily Middle Eastern market when it was located in the Public Storage complex near Colorado Boulevard and Evans Avenue. We became infatuated when it moved several blocks east to a much larger space with a bigger parking lot. Browse the shelves for date or pomegranate molasses, containers of locally made hummus, and hard-to-find spices like za'atar and sumac (sold in bulk). Ezzedin Fitouri and Faraj Elmaragani, the friendly and knowledgeable shopkeepers, happily answer questions—and even recommend recipe tips. Don't leave without a bag of fresh pita.
The best ethnic markets are transformative: You walk inside and feel as if you’ve traveled to a foreign country. Different languages ring in your ears and difficult-to-find international ingredients are suddenly commonplace. That’s what it feels like to step inside Diyar International Market, our pick in this category for two years running. The tiny shop carries plenty of Middle Eastern goodies—falafel, fresh goat, grape leaves—that are often difficult (or impossible) to find in chain grocery stores.
2751 S. Parker Road, Aurora, 303-745-4592, hmart.com
6600 W. 120th Ave., Ste. A, Broomfield, 303-410-8168
1925 Lawrence St., 303-295-0293, www.pacificeastwest.com
Dried seaweed, kimchi, soba noodles, or shrimp crackers: If you’re looking for an Asian staple or delicacy, H Mart will have it. 2751 S. Parker Road, Aurora, 303-745-4592, www.hmart.com
The first time we shopped at Diyar, we ate an entire round of still-warm tandoori bread (imagine a flat, naan-like bread the size of a stop sign) on the way home. On the second visit, we stocked up on the diamond-shape, baguette-like samoon (five loaves for $2). Now, the market has become a reliable source for fresh feta and dried Turkish apricots, grapeseed and olive oils, and just about any Middle Eastern ingredient you can think of. Best of all, the genuine, helpful staff is as excited about your discoveries as you are. 2159 S. Parker Road, 303-337-6527