Food

Can’t Find Yeast or Flour? These 9 DC-Area Spots Are Still Baking Killer Bread

Just in case you want to leave the sourdough to the pros.

Bread Furst owner Mark Furstenberg. Photo by Scott Suchman
Coronavirus 2020

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Like “pivot” or “unprecedented,” the word “sourdough” seems destined to be linked inextricably to the era of coronavirus. Everyone, it seems, is making it (and thus, Instagramming it), and grocery store yeast or flour can be nearly impossible to find. To the rescue: some of the DC area’s top bread bakeries, which are still firing up their ovens. 

A Baked Joint
430 K St., NW
Baguettes, focaccia, sourdough, and pan de mie (a white bread that is excellent for sandwiches) are on offer at this bread-focused sister shop to Georgetown’s Baked and Wired. Get them in loaves, or sliced into toast topped with say, peanut butter, Sriracha, and cilantro. Call the Mount Vernon Square bakery (202-408-6985) to order for pickup, or get delivery via Grubhub.

Bread Furst
4434 Connecticut Ave., NW
Mark Furstenberg’s Van Ness bakery/cafe has added grocery staples like Domino brown sugar to its shelves of local specialty products. Get pre-bagged bagels (skinny and coated in sesame and poppy seeds) and glazed doughnuts, along with a wide variety of loaves. We’re fans of his sourdough and crusty Palladin bread, which can also be found in several DC restaurants. The bakery is still open for walk-in service, and it will deliver within a mile radius.

Bread & Water Company
1512 Belle View Blvd., Alexandria; 1201 S. Joyce St., Arlington
The giant loaves of crusty, airy “M bread” are the biggest draw to this Alexandria strip mall bakery and its tiny Pentagon City satellite. Also worthy: the currant/raisin/pecan variety—and the housemade hand sanitizer.

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PRE-ORDERS FOR THE WEEKEND.  This week we have our Potato Buns.  These are the same buns we use for our breakfast sandwich, burger, and fried chicken sandwich.  Also a Corn Rye Pan Loaf, Multigrain Loaf, and a box of Cake Truffles.  And of course, our Sourdough Country, Baguettes, Bagel 6-packs, Granola, Kimchi, Cultured Butter and more! . For ‪Friday 4/3, 1:30-4pm‬ pick-up, pre-ordering ‪starts at 10am on Thursday 4/2‬ . For ‪Saturday 4/4, 1:30-4pm‬ pick-up, pre-ordering ‪starts at 10am on Friday 4/3‬ . For ‪Sunday 4/5, 1:30-4pm‬ pick-up, pre-ordering ‪starts at 10am on Saturday 4/4‬ . This is pick-up only ‪from 1:30-4pm‬ (NOTE NEW TIME) through our walk-up window. . This is a pre-paid contact-free purchase, no day-of purchasing available.  If there is a line, please stay 6’ from each other. LINK IN BIO

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Elle
3221 Mount Pleasant St., NW
The all-day Mount Pleasant destination is closed for regular carryout, but on weekends, you can still find breads, sweets, and pantry staples (kimchee, butter). The offerings change each week and you have to pre-order and pay a day in advance. If there’s a baguette or sourdough on the menu, grab it.

Emilie’s
1101 Pennsylvania Ave., SE
One of the many highlights at Kevin Tien’s Capitol Hill restaurant is the housemade bread. You’ll find butter bread, sourdough, and focaccia, along with toppings like Szechuan honey butter and kimchee pimiento cheese, plus other pantry items. Instead of the regular mod-American menu, Tien is also a lineup of carryout Vietnamese fare. Order here for pickup and here for delivery.

Heidelberg Pastry Shoppe
2150 N. Culpeper St., Arlington
If you’re looking for pumpernickel or rye—there are six varieties of the latter here—this Euro-centric Arlington institution is your place. Load up on mustards, wursts, jelly doughnuts, and the stellar apple strudel. Order online or call 703-527-8394 for curbside pickup.

Pluma by Bluebird
391 Morse St., NE
The prettily tiled Union Market-adjacent shop is best known for its breakfast pastries (that chocolate/pistachio croissant!) but also offers sourdough loaves and baguettes—just call 24 hours ahead of time to place an order, or walk in to see what’s on offer.

Seylou
926 N St., NW
Flours from spelt, rye, and other grains are milled on site at this minimalist Shaw bread bakery. You can order those, in addition to Jonathan Bethony’s moist, hearty breads (the slightly sour, nutty Einkorn loaf is my favorite) for pickup, with 48 hours advance notice. A few other loaves (baguettes, white) and whole-grain sweets are available for delivery on Caviar.

Wegmans
Several locations in Maryland and Virginia
The Rochester, NY-based grocery chain bakes its bread in house throughout the day. It’s rare to pick up a baguette or cinnamon/oatmeal loaf that isn’t still warm. Pretty good salt bagels, too.

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Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.