The restaurant's thing? Giving fast food a vegan makeover.
Founder and chief executive Nicole Marquis debuted HipCityVeg in 2012 near Philadelphia's Rittenhouse Square, to crowds that lined up out the door for such fare as the Crispy HipCity Ranch, a battered "chick'n" sandwich, and the Groothie, a green smoothie with apples, leafy greens and fruit. Other items in the fast-food genre include the Ziggy Burger with smoked tempeh and sweet potato fries.
The salad portion of the menu -- Asian-accented udon noodles, a Mediterranean riff with marinated tofu, etc. -- won't be too much of a stretch for D.C. diners accustomed to the fast-casual Beefsteaks and Sweetgreens of the world.
It's worth noting that HipCityVeg's arrival comes not long after fellow vegan chain Native Foods Cafe gave up on the Washington scene. After about a year in business, Native Foods, which specializes in animal-product-free pub- and global-inspired dishes, closed its two city locations in December. A Falls Church location shut down in October.
HipCityVeg, though, is poised for expansion. In addition to the Washington location, the company is preparing to open a third Philadelphia shop, with "plans to expand on a national scale," according to a press release.
HipCityVeg, 712 Seventh St. NW. Opening this spring. hipcityveg.com.