I' ve lived in Washington, DC for the past eight years of my life and thought I had found every restaurant in the metro area that offers a specialty gluten-free menu. But just yesterday, I stumbled upon a hidden gem: Java Green Cafe. The cafe is located on 19th and K, right in the heart of downtown Washington, DC. I' ve walked past Java Green probably a thousand times since I' ve lived here, but never ventured in because it looked like nothing more than a small cafe with very few choices for meals. But after so many times walking right past it, I decided yesterday to go inside just to check it out.
My eyes were immediately drawn to several bold and colorful mentions of "gluten-free" on the cafe' s large, wall-mounted menus. There were gluten-free specifications for nearly every section of the menu! And, right on the top shelf of the food-prep area were several bags of Bob' s Red Mill Gluten-Free products, including the Homemade Wonderful Bread Mix.
Java Green considers itself a "green business" and serves only organic varieties of fruits, vegetables, breads, beans, rice, wheat-free soy sauce and noodles. The menu offers sandwiches, wraps, noodle and rice bowls, as well as juices, smoothies, coffees and tea.
Of course, I had to order a gluten-free sandwich, and I' m so glad I did! It was incredible. I ordered the gluten-free version of the Java California Sandwich, which featured gluten-free bread filled with avocado, fresh spinach, cheddar, Swiss and provolone cheeses and an avocado spread. Once the sandwich was made, it went into a Panini press to heat it up. Honestly, it was one of the most delicious lunches I' ve had since being diagnosed with celiac disease.
The best part of the meal was when I actually placed my order. The gentleman taking orders was incredibly well-versed about gluten-free and knew exactly how to enter the special order into the computer. He talked me through my options and made me feel very safe about eating the food. So, I guess I have to go back and try every other gluten-free item on the menu!
JAVA GREEN ECO CAFE 1020 19th Street N.W. Washington D.C. 20036 Phone: (202) 775-8899 Fax: (202) 315-3485