It’s heartening to know that childhood dreams can come true. Bean & Bite owner Mark Weiss had long fantasized about opening a coffee shop modeled after those that his parents had owned in Auckland, New Zealand, but the timing was never right. However, after finding an amenable space in downtown Washington, the 42-year-old Chevy Chase resident, who also owns the gastropub Againn, resuscitated family tradition in late August.
This grab ’n’ go opted for an urban farmhouse vibe, utilizing reclaimed wood alongside concrete. The shop was designed with expedience in mind, so you should be able to be in and out within just a few minutes. A regularly rotating selection of top-notch brewed coffees from PTs, Madcap and Intelligentsia is lined up by the windows, while the self-serve espresso drink machines are on the left. Tea drinkers will appreciate a non-coffee-machine-related dispenser for hot water (tea, $1.50; brewed coffee, $1.95).
Sandwiches and salads are made throughout the day in the peekaboo kitchen by chef de cuisine Nicholas Deluca (who’s also responsible for the baked treats), so the refrigerated case on the back wall gets refreshed about every half-hour. Right now there are half a dozen sandwich options and a quartet of salads, but Weiss says the menu will expand and change seasonally as the staff finds its sea legs.