Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Sticky Fingers eats, part 1

I'm remiss to have posted so little about Sticky Fingers, DC's most excellent all-vegan bakery and cafe, located at 1370 Park Rd NW. Sticky Fingers was established in 1999 by Doron Petersan, who has penned a cookbook recently. The bakery also has won a couple of Food Network Cupcake Wars battles. 
For me, Sticky Fingers is like that beloved, local band that finds national fame. Now they are hugely popular--often with lines out the door and little available seating. I don't want to begrudge them their success. It's deserved: they are one of the hardest-working bakeries and have high-quality goods. However sometimes I'm nostalgic for their past incarnations, like the funky old location on 18th Street. (I think that was the first vegan bakery I ever visited.) But maybe I need to get over my "I knew them when..." bias and celebrate Sticky Fingers for its present awesomeness.

In fact, one of my New Year's Resolutions was to visit Sticky Fingers more often. (In Baltimore, I was trying to do the same with my favorite vegan restaurant in that city: The Land of Kush. Sadly, I moved away before I achieved "regular" patron status.) I've noticed that Bianca, at the blog Vegan Crunk, often posts about Imagine Vegan Cafe, her local favorite in Memphis. Maybe Sticky Fingers can be my repeat visit spot in the District? 

Here are photos from a recent visit to Sticky Fingers for lunch. Above is the hot cocoa, with foam made by a skilled barista. The cocoa wasn't too sweet, which is fine in my book. (The chalkboard menu also listed drinking chocolate, which I may have to try next time.) Below is the hot Tempeh Reuben sandwich, with tangy sauerkraut and Russian dressing on rye bread. It wasn't the hippie-style version with sprouts and avocado that I've had from other places. Instead it was reminiscent of a grilled cheese, very compact and flaky. I do wish they'd serve it with a pickle.  
I enjoyed this sandwich at the sunny window counter. It's a good people-watching spot, looking out at the entrance to the Columbia Heights Giant. The cafe also has ample outdoor seating for nicer weather and some killer to-go offerings. Plus a whole bakery case of sweets, including those famous cupcakes. Yes, this post will be "part 1" of many for 2013.

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