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.

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An Absolutely Awesome Bottomless Brunch Sunday at Dos Caminos

Finding a bottomless brunch restaurant can be hard when most recommend reservations. You might end up bummed if you do it too late. Thankfully, some places still have spots available even the night before, which are hard to come by.

Dos Caminos is a restaurant, which has a few different locations in Manhattan, that offers a two-hour bottomless brunch add-on for $18. This prices is one of the cheapest I’ve ever seen. You can choose mimosas, frozen margaritas, bloody Mary’s, screwdrivers, or sparkling wine. This add-on is truly worth it, since the waiters don’t leave you with an empty glass for long.

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The front of Dos Caminos’ menu

Dos Caminos’ menu has so many great drink and meal options that it was hard to choose! After weighing my options, I ordered bottomless frozen margaritas and Mexican French Toast.

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Frozen margarita

This dish already sounded amazing. It tasted even better! This dish is described in the menu as “crispy pan torrejas, rum, and cajeta caramel roasted bananas. Cajeta is a syrup which is usually made of sweetened, caramelized goat’s milk, according to Wikipedia.

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Mexican French Toast

The cajeta roasted bananas, whipped cream, and syrup made the perfect topping combo for French Toast. Dos Caminos got it just right, and it was so hard not to order some to-go. If you like or want to try French toast, this is one you definitely need to try!

Dos Caminos’ bottomless brunch is absolutely worth it. If you’re looking for a place to brunch in NYC during the weekend, definitely check it out!

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.

 

 

Iron Rooster

My sister has talked about Iron Rooster for so long and said that I needed to go for some time now. She’d spoken so highly of this place, so I knew I had to try it. She decided to take our family to brunch there. Iron Rooster is a restaurant located in downtown Annapolis, MD that has plenty of breakfast and lunch/dinner food options. When you peruse the menu, there’s plenty of super Maryland dishes, which is fitting since it’s located in our state’s capital.

The restaurant is mostly narrow and opens up a bit more the further in you go and has an upstairs. If you’ve been in any old town or historic area buildings, that’s how it’s built. The staff kindly greeted us and took us to a table upstairs, which has a little cafe-like area by the front window. Interestingly, this place has a homey feel to it.

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My sister ordered RoosTarts (homemade “Poptarts”) for our table while we looked at our meal options, since it was the rest of our family and my first time there. There are different flavors available daily. We ordered brown sugar and chocolate banana, which they thankfully warm up for you. The brown sugar cinnamon was absolutely amazing! It tastes 10 times better than the Pop Tart version and is much thicker. This treat melts on your mouth and would be great with or without the whipped cream and powdered sugar. As for the chocolate banana, I thought it was okay. I think I would’ve liked it more if it was a bit sweeter.

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Brown sugar RoosTart

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Chocolate banana RoosTart

After mulling over the menu, I chose to get brioche French toast topped with strawberries (optional) and spiced maple bourbon butter. I didn’t know this butter existed until going here, and I absolutely loved it! The French toast would’ve been good without it, but the butter elevated this dish. The toast was made with apple and vanilla bean egg batter, which was complimented well by the butter, syrup, and strawberries.

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French toast (before adding syrup)

I’d absolutely visit Iron Rooster again. The food didn’t disappoint, and there are so many other dishes I want to try. If you’re ever in Annapolis, MD, give this place a try!

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Until next time.

Take Me Back to Sugar Shack

I may or may not have an obsession with donuts. I’ve been controlling my cravings as much as possible, and by no means is this strictly a dessert blog. There are definitely a lot of good donut shops popping up and making their marks in the specialty food part of the industry.

Sugar Shack Donuts & Coffee is a mostly Virginia-based donut shop. A few are located in the DMV area, and the newest one is in Washington, D.C.

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I’ve been in NoVA (Northern Virginia) more often lately, so I’m glad I remembered Sugar Shack was on my list of places to go. I was able to get there about 40 minutes before they closed, which could be the reason for not knowing what flavors were available for the day. One of the employees suggested some donut flavors to me, and I choose a few from the list: maple bacon, red velvet, and Rice Krispies (August’s flavor of the month – please forgive me for the late post).

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Lately, I’ve been pushing myself to get something I’ve had before and something new. Maple Bacon was my safe choice this time, and it truly didn’t disappoint. The maple icing is one of the best I’ve ever had. The bacon was so good! I wish this donut had bacon bits instead of bacon pieces. I bought the Rice Krispies donut since it was that month’s flavor. I thought it was decent. I wouldn’t have gone to buy a whole dozen of these after trying, but I’d buy it again. As for the red velvet, I absolutely loved it! This cakey donut was my favorite out of the three flavors I purchased for myself. If I couldn’t have any other flavor at Sugar Shack ever again, I would choose this one. It’s one of the best donuts I’ve ever had.

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If you’re ever in Virginia, Sugar Shack Donuts & Coffee is definitely worth a try. I can’t wait to go back!

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.

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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.

Mille-Feuille Bakery (Updated)

Updated 1/8/19: Fever NYC’s Twitter seems to have been deleted. A new page wasn’t available on Twitter.

I decided to go to the city on a whim, which is something I like to do. I saw Fever NYC’s tweet about free macarons at Mille-Feuille Bakery. Later on, I found out that it was Macaron Day. I didn’t get there before they ran out of free macarons and decided to get a couple to try. I’ve wanted to try macarons for so long and finally got to try them!

I decided to walk around Washington Square Park before I went to Mille-Feuille Bakery. A couple of women stopped me and asked me if I knew it was the International Day of Happiness, and I nodded. We had a nice chat about school, and they gave me free food to celebrate this wonderful day. I thought it was such a kind gesture. The women I chatted with and some other people were giving food to everyone in the park. I thought it was such a nice thing to do and a great way to celebrate!

Washington Square Park (taken by me)

Washington Square Park

My free food (taken by me)

My free food

I eventually made my way to Mille-Feuille Bakery. I thought macarons would be good, but I didn’t think they’d be that good! So thanks to them for the yummy treats.

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Mille-Feuille Bakery storefront

I bought passionfruit and rose, and ended up with rose because so many of the macarons were gone. Passionfruit was my favorite out of the two, and it tasted even better than how I thought it would. I wasn’t a huge fan of rose because flower-flavored food isn’t my thing. I’d absolutely go back to try the other flavors.

Passionfruit and Rose macarons (taken by me)

Passionfruit and Rose macarons

 

Until next time.