Hip City Veg opened 2012. A restaurant that not only introduced people to tasty food that good for their health, but also the planet! This all vegan restaurant presents dishes that debunk the myth that vegan food is just nuts and leaves. Let’s just get into it:

  • The sandwiches:
    • I chose the Ziggy burger, and it went dumb! This is their classic burger with special sauce (we love a good special sauce). The philly steak or crispy hipcity ranch chick’n sandwich also won gold medals from me. Great flavors + good portion size = happy me
  • The sides:
    • The side salads are a solid choice as expected..HOWEVER, the sweet potato fries are a game changer. Some sweet potato fries from places are fresh but not very flavorful. Not these.. They were made with love. Also, the sriracha aioli dipping sauce is 10/10 would recommend!
  • The shakes:
    • Each month they shake up their shakes by adding seasonal flavors. I ordered the pumpkin pie shake, but I was hesitant how this would come out. I took my first sip and there was no looking back! If you ask me to go back to Hip City Veg, this will be my only response..

Smorgasburg was started 2011 in Brooklyn, NY as a food-centered flea market. Some of the most innovative food items are sold here, making it the perfect destination for all foodies. Smorgasburg has now expanded to Los Angeles and Washington D.C, and I went this past Saturday before they close it down for the fall. The food I had was FIRE, so let’s get into it:

Spicy Chicken Sandwich

Hot Lola’s combined Nashville hot chicken and Sichuan flavors to make one of the best chicken sandwiches I have had! The slaw, pickles, and sesame bun were solid role players! However, the chicken was the star player. I was in love with the juiciness, crunch, and amazing seasoning they used.

Volcano, Teriyaki, and Cheese Louise

The Urban Oyster actually made me mad at myself for not trying chargrilled oysters sooner! I tried their volcano, teriyaki, and cheese louise oysters. I was hesitant to try these exotic flavors on my oysters, but this was the best decision I made all day. I could eat those 3 oysters over and over and over.. This was without a doubt a 10/10 for me.

Old Bay Mac N’ Cheese

Old bay goes on a lot in the D.C and Maryland area, but does it goes on mac n’ cheese?? It’s a yes from me dawg *Randy Jackson voice*. Hal and Al’s BBQ is bold for this, but i’m so glad they did. The mac n’ cheese was rich with cheese, and the old bay added an excellent burst of flavor mixed in. It was not overpowering at all. I throughly enjoyed every bite!

Cinnamon Sugar donuts

Just when I was thinking to myself, “imma need something sweet”, Sweet Crimes presented me with these gluten free and vegan donuts! When you hear gluten free and vegan in the same sentence, you may raise an eyebrow but Sweet Crimes cinnamon sugar donuts went above my expectations! I devoured them in 2 bites easy. The vegan cream was light and a smooth compliment for the donuts!

Astro’s doughnuts and fried chicken was started by Elliot Spaisman and professional hockey player, Jeff Halpern. They have used seasonal flavors and classic recipes to make great doughnuts and fried chicken. Let’s get into it:

Spicy Chicken Sandwich on Cheddar Biscuit and Sesame Bun
  • Astro’s is one block away from the White house, so expect it to be busy! They have a sit down portion of the restaurant and a “fast food” carry out side. It was a great environment to eat comfort food and hangout with friends.
  • The uniqueness of the menu definitely caught my attention. You can find a maple bacon donut, creme brûlée donut, or PB&J donut! I was so excited, then found out I can also order a spicy chicken sandwich on a cheddar biscuit or a chicken sandwich BLT between a savory donut.
  • I ordered the spicy chicken sandwich with a cheddar biscuit, and it was the perfect combonation of spiciness, ranch, and the biscuit tied it all together so well! It got a little messy, but it was well worth it. The tater tots were so fresh and tasty! I could eat them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Only thing that I would change is the number of pickles on the sandwich, because I was left looking like..

Two brothers from New Jersey now famous for their fried chicken? Yes, and their restaurant is a must hit while in East Village, NYC. Their fantastic chicken along with their smooth ambiance makes for a great recipe. Let’s get into it:

  • Blue Ribbon is a spot you walk past, look inside, and get the fear of missing out! It is a smooth environment that reminded me of a transformed warehouse with big windows and high ceilings. A great place to grab food as you walk the streets of NYC.
  • What to order? What to order? The Classic chicken sandwich is a simple go-to! If you want to indulge in their famous chicken recipe then I would crush the Tender Supreme or 2 piece combo. The smoked Mac n Cheese is also a must order. The regular and sweet potato fries were delicious. If you want to freak the plate, I recommend their Fries With the Works thats comes topped with cheddar cheese and smoked bacon!
  • Like most chicken spots, the sauces are a necessity. They found the perfect honey drizzle to accompany their chicken. They have a chipotle honey, wasabi honey, and my favorite is the wildflower honey. If you like spicy, try the ghost pepper gochujang sauce! Your reaction will be…

Jeni’s Ice Cream brings people together with their unique and delicious flavors of ice cream and wonderful customer service. Fresh ingredients and a nice environment makes this place special. I would chose this over most dessert places any day of the week! Let’s get into it:

Brambleberry crisp, Frose, and Rainbow
  • The ambiance of Jeni’s is youthful and bright! The employees are always upbeat and full of energy. This creates an infectious vibe throughout the shop. Every time I have gone, the line is piled up to the door, but the the wait is worth your time.
  • The flavors of Jeni’s are outstanding and unlike anything you’ll find anywhere else. I don’t know who thought to put blackberry jam into vanilla ice cream to form Brambleberry crisp, but it works! From the Frosé to the salted peanut butter with chocolate, every bite will perfectly melt in your mouth. They found the perfect combonation of flavors and smoothness!
  • Could I eat this everyday? Yes without hesitation. It is affordable and great quality. I usually get the trio, which includes 3 scoops of my favorites at around $8.75. A pint is $12 and could EASILY be eaten in one night! Nobody wants your store bought ice cream when Jeni’s is still open!

Ooh’s and Aah’s is a top soul food spot in Washington D.C. They have grown to be extremely popular after being featured on Diner, Drive-ins, and Drive in 2011. I can’t stop thinking about how great the food is. Let’s get into it:

8-wings and Mac N’ Cheese
  • Ooh’s and Aah’s ambiance and environment is what makes it unique. At their U St. location, it is a small face paced environment. You may not know what is going on at first, but they will find a way to take your order. It will be worth the hassle! They also opened up another location on Georgia Avenue that is a more homey sit down restaurant.
  • The food…IS BOMB. They have a range of different soul food items, and they all are delicious. From their chicken and waffles to teriyaki salmon to mac n’ cheese. The award winning mac n’ cheese makes me happy every time, because it tastes like the chef put their foot in it!
  • The flavors are immaculate. I have eaten tons of soul food so far, but this has changed the game. They give great portions as well. Big portions + Deep fried food = The itis! Oohs and Aahs will remain undefeated unless someone takes their recipe

Must I repeat, Haikan is HOT. Ramen is a popular dish that can be found in many Japanese restaurants. Haikan is cool little date spot, where you can eat and catch a vibe or order your food to-go and quickly get back to Netflix! If you still eat ramen out of a packet, this ramen will make you reevaluate your life thus far. Let’s get into it:

Spicy Shou
  • Haikan’s ambience easily separates it from similar style restaurants I’ve been to, with its mixed Japanese design with the modernization of Washington, D.C. The open preparation station and kitchen presented a homey vibe, because you could see everything being made! It’s almost like dinner and a show. The outdoor patio is nicely furnished and a great place to eat, drink, and take selfies during golden hour.
  • The menu is exquisite and offers you different items such as spicy shoyu (ramen), ramen cookie sandwich, and a giant shrimp burger that’s available during happy hour. If you choose to dine in, you should definitely try one of their signature cocktails. The frosé was a must for me, because who doesn’t like frozen rosé with their food???
  • The portions for the large bowl were great! I took some to go and BODIED the leftovers the next day. Treat yourself, don’t cheat yourself. A small would definitely still do the job though and is $5 cheaper! It’s a win win situation with whichever you choose.
  • The flavors from Haikan made me smile 🙂 The presentation of the bowl was very neat and crisp. AKA photo worthy! I ordered the Spicy Shou. Each and every components of the bowl was mixed together so well. I could not stop diving in for another bite, the flavors were so unique and tasty! AND the broth!! simply unmatched.. It was wonderfully potent, and the extra spice added the perfect touch. After a few bites in, you will without a doubt feel like..

Have you ever looked for food on Yelp and decide to try a new spot, then you show up and it does not look like the image you had in your head? That is Sunrise Restaurant. Sunrise is a family owned Caribbean restaurant in Washington D.C. When you walk in, the authentic decor, Caribbean music, and the freshness of the food creates a comfortable, family oriented ambiance.

Let’s get into why they are a hidden gem:

Jerk Chicken, Rice and Beans, Mac and Cheese
  • The taste of Sunrise’s food is ridiculously good. Caribbean food is known for its flavors and spices, which is exactly what Sunrise provides. From the oxtail to the jerk sauce to the plantains, everything is seasoned with love!
  • Sunrise has Vegan options, and i’m talking about the whole shabang. Their is no let up in terms of flavor between their vegan jerk, curry, and stew! Also, they put their foot in that vegan Mac N’ Cheese. You have to try it!
  • Sunrise gives you enough food to eat for the rest of the day. I never leave this place still hungry. If you give good portions, then I will always stan.

The country has been going crazy for the past 3 weeks trying to obtain a Popeyes’ chicken sandwich after social media exploded. After Popeyes created beef between themselves and Chick-Fil-A on social media, people obviously have to get their hands on the sandwich immediately to see for themselves! So, it is only right that we can compare Popeyes to the King of Chicken Sandwiches, aka Chick-Fil-A. Lets dig in!

I have some necessary categories for us to look at before I make my final decision.

  • Chicken Filet
    • Popeyes: The spicy filet was FIRE. The filet was juicy and breaded impeccably. With every bite, I had to look at the sandwich because I was falling in love.
    • Chick-Fil-A: Their filets are consistent. I always know what I am getting when I go here. A nice size filet that is breaded lighter than Popeyes but gets the taste buds excited every time.
  • Sauce
    • Popeyes: As I was eating the spicy sandwich, I deeply appreciated the spicy mayonnaise that showed up to the party. The balance between filet and sauce was great! However, other Popeyes’ sauces also made the sandwich great to dip in. I recommend the blackened ranch or sweet heat.
    • Chick-Fil-A: If I have to tell you how good Chick-Fil-A’s sauces are, then this article is not for you. But seriously, I enjoy the variety of sauces they provide since they are all great. You can freak the sandwich by spreading the sauce on the bun or dipping the sandwich.
  • Pickle
    • Popeyes: I can not stress this enough, but that pickle on the spicy sandwich was better than any pickle you have been served. I am not a big pickle fan, however that pickle paired with the sandwich PERFECTLY. It had a nice crunch and complimented the sauce too!
    • Chick-Fil-A: Their pickles are decent. They are not crispy and juicy but do add an extra layer of flavor. They aren’t something to rave about, therefore I must say they could take notes from Popeyes on this one.
Popeye’s Spciy Sandwich

IN THE END: Popeyes definitely presented an adrenaline rush for me after all the hype. The sandwich was absolutely delicious. It was a bit more heavy than the Chick-Fil-A sandwich though. The Chick-Fil-A sandwich is like wife material. It is consistent and proven itself to you over time. The Popeyes’ sandwich was like the person you met at the club. Looks attractive and everything seems perfect, because you just met each other. That sparkle may fade since you have not been on other dates yet. Let me know how you all feel! #CameraEatsFirst