Wait U Street Cafe Closes at 4pm!?!?

Why would a coffee shop located in the heart of U St, NW (1301 U St, NW – between 13th and 14th) close at 4pm? I just don’t get this.

Anyone know when the hours changed?

Their Web site says:

Wouldn’t folks want to enjoy all day breakfast items past 4pm? What’s going on here?

18 Comment

  • It does strike me as odd, too. I was looking for a place to work on Sunday, around 3pm. I would was about to walk in the door when I notice it closed at 4, so I went elsewhere.

  • Good question. I always stop by in the morning for chai..I love the staff there…They should stay open later…

  • Probably because the owner’s second job starts at 5pm. How else can they afford the rent?

  • I am always suspicious of places like this that have bizarro hours. Always makes me think it’s some kind of front, because I know first hand that commercial rents in this city are for the most part ridiculous-high.

    • I don’t think that it’s bizarre for a breakfast/lunch/coffee place to be open when people normally consume breakfast/lunch/coffee. Then close at 4pm, so they don’t have to employ staff in the evening (to watch a few people work on their laptops when they should be at a bar). 7 to 4 means you only have to have one shift of staff per day.

      • Exactly. That said, I wish we had more late-night/all-night coffee shops in the city. That’s one thing I really missed when I first moved here.

        • Checkout steam cafe on 17th and R. It’s open super late, if not all night. Has decent coffee, sandwiches, and a lentil soup to die for.

  • Cost of staying open is higher than evening revenue. If they are paying people to stand around and do nothing they lose. The nighttime choices in that area are vast – maybe they just can’t compete.

    • Not always true – sometimes it costs more to open/close (in terms of lost opportunity cost than it does to stay open 24 hours. Especially given this place’s location and the fact that this is one of the main complaints transplants from other cities have.

      I go to work at 5:45-6am sometimes via Ust and it suprises me the lack of places open, yet so many people on foot!

  • If they are baking their own pastries and they care about the quality they probably do it first thing in the morning and sell them through the afternoon. By then, anything that’s left is no longer at the peak of freshness so they’d have to make new batches, and it’s not worth the trouble.

  • These hours are brought to you by your Local ANC!

    • What would the ANC possibly have to do with this? That’s just a ridiculous crack on a bunch of unpaid elected representatives. They don’t serve alcohol, so the ANC wouldn’t weigh in on this.

  • i think plenty of places can pull off those kind of hours downtown (and many do). but on U street? doesn’t seem like a formula for success?

  • Easy, they view Cafe Collage (14/T) as their competition and are vying for bragging rights as the coffee shop with the strangest hours.

  • This begins to show the flaws in the speculative Luxury Condo/Rental retail development model. It will likely have to convert to a Bar to make.

  • Front business! Not the only one in DC. How about that Shaw sandwich place that’s never, ever open?

  • How about Kogibow in AdMo????

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