Sugar Lab

Ice cream shops may seem to be a dime a dozen, but Sugar Lab is different and doesn’t disappoint.

I decided to check out some spots in Georgetown that I’d been meaning to try on a Sunday of all days. If you haven’t visited there before, it’s always super busy on the weekend. The warm weather has brought more people out of hibernation. Since I was there in the evening, many things were starting to close. Sugar Lab was one of the few places I still had time to check out.

When you walk in, the space feels very open and calm. Pretty pastels, wall art, trinkets, and fan photos make this space the perfect place to chill. There’s a table and a couple of chairs by the window on the small, street-level floor. The sweet treats are downstairs, where you can also find more tables and chairs.

 

Sugar Lab's photo wall.

Sugar Lab’s photo wall.

Sugar Lab’s flavors for that day were strawberry cheesecake, cookies and cream, chocolate, vanilla, matcha, and lychee. You have the option of getting your ice cream in a cup or a fresh bubble waffle. You can have up to three scoops in the waffle and three toppings for ice cream. They also have a few drinks on the menu. I ordered Thai Iced Tea with boba pearls and a bubble waffle with strawberry cheesecake and lychee ice cream with Fruity Pebbles, Cinnamon Toast Crunch, and mochi on top.

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Thai Iced Tea with boba pearls.

The Thai Iced Tea was so good. I think it tastes like a sweet milk tea. This drink has been on my list to try for a bit now, and it was perfect. Between the ice cream flavors I chose, lychee was my absolute favorite. I could be biased because I love pretty much anything with lychee. Also, you can never go wrong with strawberry cheesecake. Both flavors were sweet and creamy. The toppings I chose complimented the ice cream flavors very well. Don’t even get me started on the made-to-order bubble waffle. It was one of the best waffles I’ve ever had. If I had to choose between an ice cream cone and this, I’d absolutely choose the waffle. Sugar Lab’s ice cream pairs so well with it. The only downside about this is that you can’t have the ice cream upright depending on how your toppings stick. Some of the Fruity Pebbles fell off a few at a time.

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Two scoops of ice cream in a fresh bubble waffle.

I would definitely plan on going back soon. It’s one of the most affordable specialty ice cream shops I’ve tried. You won’t feel like you spent way too much on any one item.

What’s your favorite ice cream shop? Let me know in the comments.

Until next time.

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5 D.C. Area Doughnut Shops You Need to Visit Now

Have you ever craved doughnuts and had no clue where to go? Finding the perfect doughnut shop can be hard. Here’s a guide to help you find the best doughnut shops for you in the D.C. Metropolitan area.

Duck Donuts

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An assorted dozen from Duck Donuts

If made-to-order doughnuts are your thing, Duck Donuts is the place for you! They have great options for coating, icing, toppings, and drizzles. They also have set doughnut combinations from which you can choose. The lemon and (new) key lime glazes is absolutely amazing, FYI. Duck Donuts has locations spread throughout the DMV: Rockville, Gaithersburg, Arlington, Alexandria, and more.

1431, 1327 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD 20852

https://www.duckdonuts.com/

Sugar Shack Donuts & Coffee

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Sugar Shack’s red velvet donut.

Red velvet donuts? Check. Samoa donuts? As in Girl Scout cookie-inspired donuts? Check. Wow. Would you believe it if I told you they have thirty more flavors?! There’s truly a donut for everyone at Sugar Shack. They’re based in Virginia and recently added a Washington, D.C. location to their list!

1932 9th Street, Washinton DC, 20001

sugarshackdonuts.com/

Astro Doughnuts & Fried Chicken

Candy Apple Doughnut

Astro Fried Chicken & Doughnuts’ seasonal Red Apple doughnut

If you’re looking for a menu with a mix of traditional and seasonal flavors, Astro Doughnuts & Fried Chicken is the place to go. Last summer, they had Key Lime Pie and Passionfruit Doughnuts. They are currently offering Lemon Matcha, Cherry Cheesecake, Strawberries & Cream, and Chocolate Nutella for the spring. Their regular flavors include vanilla glazed and PB&J. Although their doughnut menu is on the smaller side, their options are fresh, tasty, worth every calorie! I recently found out that the cake doughnuts are made to order. Astro is also known for their chicken dishes that would go well with your doughnut of choice. 😉

1308 G St. N.W., Washington, DC 20005

www.astrodoughnuts.com

District Doughnut

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An assorted half dozen of fall flavors from District Doughnut.

District Doughnut has a set menu of regular and seasonal flavors that are made fresh daily. Their seasonal flavors truly compliment the seasons well. Currently, they offer spring flavors such as Baklava and Cherry Blossom and regular flavors such as Funfetti, Brown Butter, and Raspberry PB&J. There are four locations: Georgetown, Capital Hill, the Wharf, and Union Market. It gets the perfect amount of natural light and has great backdrops for your #doughnutface or #foodstagram pics.

3327 Cady’s Alley NW, Washinton DC, 20007

www.districtdoughnut.com

B Doughnut

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B Doughnut’s Oreo Cheesecake doughnut

Sweet or savory? Creme? Fruit? B Doughnut has options in both categories. Above is their Oreo Cheesecake flavor that I don’t see on the menu right now, but they update flavors regularly. Cinnamon Sugar is absolutely delicious as well. You really can’t go wrong with any of these flavors. They have one permanent locations in Leesburg, VA, a pop-up in Ashburn, and a Vienna, VA location coming soon. You can also find their doughnuts in their parter’s, Post Coffee Bar, shops.

7 Loudoun St SW, Leesburg, VA 20175

bdoughnut.com/

Also offered at:

Post Coffee Bar
7902 Tysons One Pl
Tysons, VA 22102
www.postcoffeebar.com/

 

What’s your favorite D.C. doughnut shop? Write a comment below!

Until next time.

4 Things You Need to Do during Cherry Blossom Season in D.C.

Have you ever wondered how to fully embrace cherry blossom season in Washington, D.C.? It’s one of the busiest times of year in the area, and the perfect time to do any and everything you can before the blossoms go. Strolling, or being stuck in foot traffic, around the Tidal Basin is a given. Indulging in the cherry blossom-inspired food and events are some things that you must consider to fully experience this special time of year. Peak bloom is April 1, which means at least 70% of them will be fully bloomed on that day. You definitely want to partake before it comes to an end!

Cherry Blossoms 2016

Cherry Blossoms on the Tidal Basin 2016

This time only comes once a year, so this is the perfect time to explore! Check out my list of things to do in D.C. to compliment your cherry blossom viewing activities. Note: This time of year brings a LOT of traffic to D.C. area. Driving times are based on low traffic times. Expect some traffic patterns to change and a lot of tourists.

  • Visit the Cherry Blossom Pub pop-up – This pop-up has been super popular since its beginning. It tends to be super busy after 6:30 pm, per their FAQs page. They have cherry blossom-themed drinks and ramen. It’s located near the Shaw-Howard University metro stop, which isn’t super close to the Tidal Basin. It’s about 30 minutes by metro and 15-20 minutes away, if you’re driving. Street parking is available. (Shaw) 1843 7th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001 
  • Munch on cherry blossom dessertsAstro Doughnuts & Fried Chicken – Cherry Cheesecake doughnut. This Astro location is about a 10-minute drive or a 15-minute metro ride from the Tidal Basin. 1308 G St. NW, Washington, DC 20005
    • District Doughnut – A cherry blossom doughnut made up of vanilla bean dough, cream cheese glaze, and cherry pie filling, topped with crumbled pie crust and cream cheese drizzle. The Wharf location is about a five-minute drive from the Tidal Basin and about 12 minutes via metro. (The Wharf) 5 Market Square SW
      Washington DC, 20024. 2 other locations on Capitol Hill – Barracks Row and in Georgetown.
    • Baked & Wired – A cherry blossom cupcake made up of vanilla cake with maraschino cherries in the batter topped with a cherry buttercream. (Georgetown) 1052 Thomas Jefferson St. NW, Washington DC 20007
  • Sip Rosé at the Watergate Hotel on the weekend. – Until Sunday, April 14, the Watergate Hotel offers cherry blossom-themed afternoon tea on Saturdays and Sundays. The menu includes Veuve Cliquot Champagne Rosé and cherry blossom macarons. Reservations are required. The hotel is 26 minutes from the Tidal Basin via metro and eight minutes by car. 2650 Virginia Ave NW, Washington, D.C. 20037
  • Learn about Japanese culture at the Japanese Street Festival. – Formally known as Sakura Matsuri, the Japanese Street Festival is an opportunity to learn more about the culture and traditions through food, performances, and art. This part of 7th St. NW is about six minutes away, if you’re driving, and 25 minutes by metro. Pennsylvania Ave., NW between 3rd and 7th Streets.

Check out the National Cherry Blossom Festival, Inc.’s official 2019 event guide.

Until next time.

A Taste of Fall at District Doughnut

There are so many dessert options in Georgetown: pie, ice cream, cupcakes, doughnuts… you name it. District Doughnut is one of the most popular doughnut shops in D.C., and I finally got the chance to check it out.

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This District Doughnut location is not in plain site. Surprisingly, it isn’t on the busiest street in Georgetown, M Street. It’s down an old brick path that is just wide enough for one car and some pedestrians in Cady’s Alley.

This shop is very chill and welcoming. I love that they let me know that their fall flavors were about to leave soon, which made my decision easier.

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Top, left to right: Caramel Apple Streusel, Cranberry Crumble, Pumpkin Glazed; bottom, left to right: Pumpkin Spice Latte Creme Brûlée, Salted Dulce de Leche, Maple Butter Pecan

Fortunately, I go to try a bit of all of them. My absolute favorites were Cranberry Crumble and Maple Butter Pecan. I’m a huge fan of cranberry, and this doughnut won my heart. The dried cranberries were like the cherries on top. The doughnut itself would even be delicious without it. As for the Maple Butter Pecan, I’m surprised that I liked it as much as I did. The maple butter glaze was impeccable, and the pecans weren’t bothersome. If you’re someone who prefers chopped nuts over halves and wholes, this is perfect for you.

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Cranberry Crumble

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Pumpkin Spice Latte Creme Brûlée

I didn’t dislike any of these doughnuts. They were all delicious, soft, and fresh. You honestly can’t go wrong with any of them. There is truly something for everyone at District Doughnut! If you’re ever in D.C., this is a great option.

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District Doughnut just debuted their winter menu, so I’m hoping to try them soon.

Until next time.

 

 

Baked & Wired

I don’t know about you, but I may or may not be addicted to dessert. I don’t have it everyday or anything crazy. I just often want to go out and try a new doughnut or cupcake flavor.

I finally went to Baked & Wired, which is a busy dessert shop in Georgetown. My sister and I had to wait outside in line because it was so busy! Finally getting inside felt like an accomplishment! We looked at a menu and looked down the line of sweets in amazement.

There are a lot of treats you see while the line is moving, so it’s helpful to look at the menu or know what you want before arriving.

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Since the line moves steadily, you don’t have a lot of time to choose what you want. This process is a bit easier because they have menus at the door for you to look over once you get inside. Once it was my turn, I ended up making quick decisions because a couple of my desired sweets were sadly sold out. I bought Tessita, Elvis Jailbird, Dirty Chai (for my sister) and the Oh My God bar.

Continue reading

Pie Day

Have you ever seen a place that you really want to go to and have the hardest time making your way down there? That was me with Pie Sisters. It never seemed to quite work out for me to go. I can finally say that I’ve been!

Pie Sisters is one of the cutest shops in Georgetown. I truly love the decor and wish I had enough time to soak in all of it. They have four different pie sizes: pie bites, cuppie, a slice, and a 9-inch pie. Since I got there last minute, I could only choose from what they had left. I bought about 7 cuppies for my family and me to try.

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When I go to dessert shops, I try to get something familiar and something I’ve never had. This time, I bought key lime and s’mores. Key lime was amazing! I don’t think I’ve ever met a key lime pie I didn’t like. It was the perfect combination of sweet and tangy, and the crust complemented it very well.

Key lime pie

S’mores pie

S’mores was alright. It tasted almost like what I hoped it would. Unfortunately, the crust and the pie filling separated after the first bite. My guess was that the graham cracker layer between the chocolatey filling and the crust was the culprit. The filling itself was good. The pie falling apart was disappointing.

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I would absolutely go back to Pie Sisters and try some other flavors! I recommend trying it if you’re ever in Georgetown.

Until next time.

What the Duck?

Duck Donuts is one of the best donut/doughnut shops in the D.C. Metro Area. Their made to order donuts are absolutely delicious! They have locations in Rockville, Gaithersburg, Herndon, Fairfax, Arlington, Alexandria…just to name a handful. If you’re in the Baltimore area, there’s one in White Marsh. Check the locator to see if you have one in your area because there are a lot on the East Coast.

I looked at Duck Donuts’ holiday donuts before I got there so I had an idea of what I wanted to order. If you want to save time creating your order, especially if you’re getting a dozen, this is the best way to go. I ordered some holiday-ish donuts and freestyled some.

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(from left to right, each row)

  • Blueberry glaze, graham cracker
  • Peanut butter glaze, raspberry drizzle
  • Cookies & cream
  • S’mores
  • Mint glaze, chocolate sprinkles (Note: currently unavailable)
  • Maple bacon x 2
  • Another S’mores
  • Lemon glaze, coconut
  • Lemon glaze, graham cracker, marshmallow drizzle
  • Vanilla icing, raspberry drizzle with coconut

I can’t and didn’t eat a dozen donuts. Haha. I ordered some of these for my family. I tried the blueberry glaze, peanut butter glaze, maple bacon, lemon glaze with coconut, and coconut with raspberry drizzle. My absolute favorites out of all of them were 1.  maple bacon and 2. peanut butter glaze. If you’ve never tried a maple bacon donut but love both separately, I’m sure you’ll love it! It’s the perfect sweet and savory balance. The peanut butter glaze donut with the raspberry drizzle tasted like a PB&J sandwich, one of my favorite sandwiches ever. I’m so glad they all turned out amazing, but can anyone really go wrong with fresh, warm donuts?

Updated 1/9/19: The mint flavors are currently unavailable.

Until next time.

D.C. Event Guide: How to Do Truckeroo the Right Way

Truckeroo is a popular, free-entry food truck event in Washington, D.C. that happens nearly year-round. There are so many trucks with great, Insta-worthy food, and you don’t want to miss out and not get the most out of this free entry event! Here are some tips to help you experience as much of this event as possible.

  • Show up early. Truckeroo usually goes from 4 pm to 11 pm. If you don’t like large crowds, go as early as you can. The earlier you go, the more food options you’ll have. If you go later, you risk missing out on food that is no longer in stock.
  • Make the most of having a group (if applicable). Have someone hold your place in a super long line while you get food from a truck with a shorter, faster line, if you’re with a group. You’ll make the most of your time.

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  • Consider sharing food if you attend with a group so you don’t get full quickly and have plenty of room try other foods there. There is a ton of good food to try, so having room for it is a plus!
  • Check Truckeroo’s Facebook page for updates throughout the week (i.e. cancellation due to weather). Better safe than sorry!
  • Check out the list of trucks attending to plan which ones you must go to. Planning ahead makes all of the difference because you spend your time in line instead of figuring out what’s there as you go.

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Tweet me to tell me about your experience or Instagram your Truckeroo pics, using #foodishways. I’ll repost some on my new food only Instagram account, @foodishways! Follow to find out about good food spots.

Until next time.

It’s Really Plantain and Simple

In a park full of food trucks, I had my heart set on one that didn’t have a long line upon arrival. I tried it for the first time, last year, at my first Truckeroo event. Peruvian Brothers, one of my favorite food trucks in the D.C. Metropolitan area, serves some of the best Peruvian food I’ve ever had.

This Truckeroo event felt drastically different than the last one I attended. It was hot and humid outside, and there were a LOT more people…not my ideal summer situation. I really wanted my baby sister to have a similar first experience, but I couldn’t change these factors. We looked for the shortest lines, and my sister chose the first one, the Westray’s Finest Ice Cream food truck.

My sister got Peanut Butter & Chocolate, and I chose Southern Maple Cornbread. Let. me. tell. YOU. The ice cream I got was scrumptious. Enjoying this really felt life-changing. Have you ever eaten something and just thought, “Wow. How did I live life before this?” This was one of those moments for me.

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After devouring ice cream, I bought pan con asado from the Peruvian Brothers food truck. Their food is truly a must-have. The roast beef was tender and seasoned just right. The caramelized onions were like putting a cherry on top. This sandwich truly is one of the best I’ve ever had.

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Until next time.

Battle at the BBQ

Crazy lines on a beautiful day can lead to the perfect Saturday. Shutting down one of the most popular parts of Pennsylvania Avenue (in front of the Newseum) in DC for a BBQ Battle was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had. I’ve only participated in an event loosely similar to this one other time in the District, which was the annual Taste of DC event.

My mom told my sisters and me about Giant’s annual BBQ Battle, and I just had to go. A reasonably priced event with good food? Count. me. in. The line to get in wasn’t really a line. It was a mass of people moving to pay to get in or pick up tickets. I wish this was more organized, but at least it didn’t affect how quickly people got in!

As soon as we got in, we saw several stations lined up. Some stations only had food and others were media-related. Most, if not all, of the stations inside were free. No strings attached.

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There was a Mentos station that gave each person in line the chance to win a free pack of their gum (as long as supplies lasted). The Turkey Hill station gave out free mini containers of their ice cream: Vanilla and Salted Caramel. Another station gave out free packs of Sunsweet Philippine Green Mangoes.

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The Oscar Meyer hot dog car was there. At their station, they had a game that required you to throw small sandbags into three different holes in a cardboard *thing*. If you got a bag in all three, you won a coupon. My mom won, and my sister and I had a photo opp in front of the hot dog car!

The biggest BBQ tent had a super long line, so we decided to see what else the event had to offer before committing so much to such a line. There were so many places to get free food. Giant (Stop n’ Shop, depending on where you are in the U.S.) sells most of this food in their stores. We got to try some Naked juices, Yungeling ice cream (churro), and some of their food products barbecued. The Apple Butter pulled pork was scrumptious. 

The Nature’s Promise truck allowed each person to choose one free item from the shelves inside. I chose their Thousand Island dressing, which I finally tried the day before writing this. It’s decent, but I think it tastes eggy.

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One of the guys at the Haagen-Dazs station was basically giving away ice cream. The station had two of the company’s flavors: Pineapple Coconut and Mint Chip. My mom only wanted one, and he was being pushy and trying to give her another one. I took two. He got my sister to take three. ‘Twas interesting.

There were a couple of tents that let people 21+ try alcoholic beverages. My mom and I went to one that didn’t have a name but offered two different wine brands and the Barefoot Wine station. We both tried one of Steila Rose’s sweet red wines, which was honestly the best red wine I’ve ever had. I love a good sweet, red wine. Barefoot was sampling four different flavors of their spritzers, and I chose the Moscato Spritzer that has “flavors of peach and tangerine,” according to their website. I loved it but wished it was a little more peachy.

There was a BBQ tent that had a shorter line: the military BBQ Battle. I was glad that I finally got to sample some food from what the event was centered around! All of the U.S. military branches were represented and had to incorporate chicken in their dishes. I think the Army and the Navy had the best dishes, packed with tons of flavor. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to take pictures because I was juggling plates.

This was our first time attending Giant’s BBQ Battle, and I enjoyed my time trying a lot of good food and drinks and enjoying the weather. I’m looking forward to the next one.

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Until next time.