Mural of the Day/Who’s Got The Scoop on Heller’s Bakery?

IMG_6485, originally uploaded by Prince of Petworth.

On Mt. Pleasant St. Heller’s Bakery always seems to be crowded. So what’s the word? Is it the breakfast, the pies, rolls, cakes or homemade ice cream? Check out the storefront after the jump…I’m intrigued by the ham, egg and cheese biscuit…

20 Comment

  • The bread, the rolls, and the doughnuts.

    I love them. They were great when I lived over there (in the 80s). We got our wedding cake there! They went downhill in the 90s, then they got sold, and came back to their previous quality.

    Service is awfully slow though.

  • where is this place? It looks awesome!

  • It’s at 3221 Mt Pleasant St

  • My fiance and I used to go to Heller’s for breakfast and coffee every weekend. We haven’t been in a while, but need to go back! I just liked looking at all the pastries 🙂

  • I live down the street, pretty much everything there is good. I would recommend knowing exactly what you want before its your turn to order though…sometimes they get a bit grouchy.

  • The cake donuts are the best ever. We get all our birthday cakes at Hellers.

  • The birthday cakes are yummy!

  • Service kinda sucks, but I agree that it is pretty delicious. Cakes are good so are the breakfast sandwiches. Weekends can be insane, weekdays, less so.

  • service is wretched. bad bad bad bad. BUT, if you count is as part of the ‘charm’ of hellers, you’ll grow to love it. id say at least two weekends a month i snag a bagel with sausage, egg and cheese and a cake donut (i’m here to confirm that they are AMAZING). in the summer, don’t order iced coffee unless you’re looking for a sneer. I LOVE hellers.

  • Two days ago someone fradulently charged my check card there for around $55..strange thing is, they did not actually have the card…I’ve never even been there in my life!

  • I grew up in MtP in the 60s and used to stop by there on the way home from Eancroft ES. You could buy a small bag of day-old sweets and broken cookies for a nickle! Ahh, the bellyaches I got…good times, good times.

    They had another store in Brookland near 12th and Monroe but I don’t think it’s still there.

  • Dang! It’s Bancroft ES!

    My bad…

  • Maybe the bakery is good, but the owner is a deadbeat condo due owner. He owns the ground floor of the property on the corners of 1st, T, and Rhode Island NW across from Bloomingdale liquors. He has been claiming that he is going to open another Heller’s Bakery in that space for the last two years, but owes around $4K in dues and so far refuses to pay them.

  • What keeps folks coming in? Probably habit and civic pride. I’ve lived near Hellers for 3 years and every time I go in I tell myself it’s the last time. The service is wretched. The donuts are amazing and the fresh bread and bagels are OK. Everything else they make tastes very similar and kind of Bisquick-y. And the coffee is awful. I really, really want to like this place and I do hope it stays afloat. Thankfully, it’s in a ridiculously fantastic neighborhood and that in itself can probably keep the place viable.

  • I agree with the previous posting. When I was graduate school, in the late-90’s, someone told me about Heller. I drove there to purchase some back good, I don’t even remember what. At any rate, it was ok. I think the place sustains itself through word of mouth and nostalgia, proximity, etc. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with that – GO HELLER’S!

  • I agree with the previous posters — I’m glad Heller’s is in the neighborhood, but if they ever got any REAL competition they would be done. First thing, you should be able to smell a bakery down the block. I’m not asking for Paris, but even Baltimore has great local bakeries. I’ve come to the conclusion that DC doesn’t know what a real bakery is. I still don’t understand the success of Cake Love. Yeck!

  • A friend of mine is friendly with the owner, and unfortunately, he’s been through the kitchen and says it’s filthy. Quote, “I would never eat anything that came out of that kitchen. It’s disgusting.”

  • I used to swear by Hellers donuts. That was about four owners ago. It went through some unfortunate transitions and landed on its feet with its current owners but the quality isn’t what I remember from the late 1980’s/early 1990s. Last time I had a donut from here it was obviously “old” and when I bit there was liquid grease that literally poured out over my lips. My partner, for whom I’d bought one for a surprise treat, had the same experience. We tossed them after one bite and haven’t had a donut from them since.

  • Seriously people… what’s to like about this mediocre spot? I think Amazing Larry is right, civic pride for a local mom and pop venue that’s been around for years keeps people coming. It’s local and convenient, but I haven’t been impressed with anything I’ve found there. I don’t think they offer anything that can keep pace with a quality bakery, like say bread and chocolate. Everything strikes me as bland and pedestrian or overly sugared. I’ve also heard that the kitchen is wretched. It’s too bad. If the place was worse in the 1980’s, that would have been a feat. The place has potential and probably always will.

  • They have great cupcakes!

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