Lavanya Ramanathan
Lavanya Ramanathan

Imagine it: While other folk wait in what are sure to be endless lines at Starbucks on Inauguration Day, you could be sipping on an espresso with pitch-perfect crema at one of the cool places Washingtonians frequent -- the kind of place where you'll get a little bit of local flavor and something tasty to eat.

These cafes and restaurants are among those that will be open Monday near the all-important Metro stations near the Mall and Capitol.

Near the Capitol:

Close to Union Station Metro is a favorite breakfast spot of Hill staffers: Taqueria Nacional. Beginning at 7 a.m. on Monday, the carryout will move onto the sidewalk in front of the restaurant (at 400 North Capitol St.), with a few varieties of tacos, coffee and its special Mexican hot cocoa.

Locally grown coffee shop Peregrine Espresso is a local favorite that coffee snobs will love. Skip a pour-over, and stick to the superb espresso drinks. The shop, not far from Eastern Market Metro, will open at 7:30 a.m.

American Legion Post 8, near both Eastern Market and Capitol South Metro stations at 224 D St. SE, offers not only coffee, but a chance to give back. Beginning at 7 a.m. until they run out, the Boy Scout Troop from Bolling Air Force Base will host a fundraiser at the post, selling coffee, hot chocolate and doughnuts, soda and water on Monday. At 10 a.m., they'll start serving hot dogs and chili dogs. Bring cash.

Ted's Bulletin on Eighth Street SE, a little more than a block from Eastern Market, is a breakfast mecca for Washingtonians. It will be open at 7 a.m. for breakfast. If you're Mall-bound, skip a table and head to the front counter for your orders, and don't forget to grab a few of the house-made pop-tarts.

Near the parade route:

One of the city's best warmers is the chai at Teaism. Find the steaming hot, spicy concoction (as well as plenty of healthy food options) at the Penn Quarter location at Eighth and D streets NW. The shop will be open regular hours.

Pitango Gelato serves delicious Counter Culture coffee and some of the city's most decadent sipping chocolate (tip: order it with steamed milk to cut some of the richness). Located on Seventh Street, not far from Chinatown Metro, they'll be prepared for the crowds on Monday morning.

Hill Country, the popular, Texas-themed barbecue joint on Seventh, will open early for inauguration-goers and will serve breakfast tacos, coffee and hot chocolate from a streetside window from 8 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Paul, a new-ish chainlet that isn't local, but French, has quiche, coffee, breads, pastries and more, and  will open at 6:30 a.m. on Monday. Because of its location on the parade route, it'll be accessible only to those who pass through the parade security checkpoints.