Buttercream Bakeshop, the beloved bakery in Shaw, announced in an Instagram post on Friday that they would be closing at the end of the year.
The shop, which first opened on 9th Street NW in 2016, quickly became a neighborhood staple and was consistently a top vote-getter in Washingtonian Weddings’ survey of the very best wedding vendors. It was especially well-known for its wedding and special occasion cakes, in addition to its other often nostalgic desserts and holiday treats. In the Instagram post, owner Tiffany MacIsaac said that the reasons for closing are “complicated” but that the short version includes: ongoing staff shortages, the rising cost of goods, and a “serious increase in crime throughout DC.” Specifically, MacIsaac says her operating costs have risen 29 percent while she’s only been comfortable with a 10 percent increase in pricing.
The shop was originally open for walk-ins—with a menu that included various pastries and desserts such as their homemade take on the Ho Ho and oatmeal cream pies—but, MacIssac pointed out in the post, the shop never reopened its service counter after the pandemic, and instead transitioned to an appointment-only pick-up location. “The constant stress of it all has taken much of the joy out of operating a small business,” the post reads.
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As of Monday, the post had racked up nearly 1,000 comments—many from event vendors as well as fellow small business owners, bakeries, and more.
Monday morning, the store posted a “last call” for Thanksgiving pies—yet another confection the shop is known for—noting that while many of the pre-order options had already sold out, there are several more available on a first-come first-serve basis, with just a few days left to order.
MacIsaac says in the post that she’s excited for what a fresh start may bring for her, while her longtime business partner Alexandra Mudry-Till will focus a newer venture called Quince Blossom Ridge, a cut-flower farm she and her husband hope to develop into an event space.
Buttercream Bakeshop is not the first DC restaurant to close while citing rising costs and increased crime—just one day before Buttercream made its announcement, Brine Oyster Bar announced it would be closing its H Street NE and Dupont locations citing those reasons as well, among others.