Democracy Dies in Darkness

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A beer crawl and chatting about storms: Little Red Fox baker Kandis Smith’s perfect day

June 6, 2018 at 10:48 PM

In D.C. Dream Day, we ask our favorite people in the area to tell us how they would spend a perfect day in the District. See previous dream days from Mayor Muriel Bowser, BYT’s Svetlana Legetic, Story District’s Amy Saidman and more.

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In the great Cake vs. Pie wars, Little Red Fox’s Kandis Smith has always been reliably Team Pie, crafting delicate floral and lattice crust designs for the Van Ness bakery (and sharing them on her mouthwatering Instagram account). But lately, even she is curious about what’s cooking on the other side of the divide. “I’ve been experimenting with cake a bit, just to switch it up,” she confesses. Smith, 30, and her fellow bakers will have more room to experiment this fall with the opening of the bakery’s new production space a few doors down, where they’ll continue to whip up cakes, pies and sweets for Little Red Fox and its sister shops, Fox Loves Taco in Brookland and The Den inside Politics and Prose’s flagship store. But when she’s off the clock on her fantasy day, Smith is taking a break from dessert altogether.

It would start with me going to Greenheart Juice Shop in Great Falls [Va.]. I’m obsessed with their green smoothie — it’s literally the best green smoothie I’ve ever had in my whole life. They call it the Green Machine: It’s so cold and refreshing. I’d get one of those and head to Great Falls Park. It’s such a great park to hike, because it feels a little more skillful than it really is. There’s rocks and stuff everywhere, so you can feel like you’re a great rock climber, when really you’re just kinda walking over some rocks.

I’d love to go to the Reston Farmers Market. There’s a stand there where they sell the best tacos I’ve ever had. I love to eat them for breakfast. They’re not breakfast tacos — it’s like chicken, pork, beef — and they make homemade tortillas. I don’t even think they have a business or anything — I’ve never seen signs. It’s just these two people making tacos.

I would probably go to my favorite butcher shop in Virginia, which is The Organic Butcher of McLean. They’re so knowledgeable; they’ll answer any questions you have. I buy all my meat from there. I usually go with a boneless rib-eye — that’s my favorite steak.

I’ll meet up with my husband, Nathan, and we’d go to Sakuramen in Adams Morgan. That’s my favorite ramen spot in the city. They know me and my husband every time we go in there. They know exactly what we’re gonna order. I’d get a Shoki bowl with a side of kimchi.

I really love beer, and sour beers are my favorite. I love to go beer shopping at Odd Provisions; they have lots of really hard-to-find things. I also love Cordial Fine Wine and Spirits at Union Market. Right Proper Brewing Company and Bluejacket always have some really cool sour beers on tap. So me and Nathan will seek out some good beers and bop around between bottle shops and bars.

Because it is my dream day, I would really like to go to A Rake’s Progress or Maydan, because it’s really impossible to get reservations there right now. So I’d have a nice 7:30 p.m. reservation.

I’m obsessed with [The Washington Post’s] Capital Weather Gang. I want to know them and be friends with them, so my dream is to have a drink with them and talk about weather, because I low-key wish I was a meteorologist. I was thinking maybe The Dabney Cellar. I have so many questions for them!


Lori McCue is the arts and food editor at DCist. Previously, she was a features editor at Express.

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