Bloomingdale’s Rustik Opening Second Location in Brookland

3523 12th Street, NE

More big news for Brookland – Rustik has signed a lease for 3523 12th Street, NE. Rhode Island Insider got the good word:

“As Diton Pashaj, one of the owners of Rustik, explains to the Insider, they have leased a building along 12th Street, near the corner of Monroe Ave, as the location of their new restaurant.”

For those not familiar you can see Rustik’s menu here.

3523 12th St, NE was the space that had the “Tamo Smoothies” coming soon sign up for ages. I asked Diton when he hoped to open the Brookland location and he said the news still hasn’t even sunk in with him yet. From the outside it looks like there is obviously a bit of reno that needs to happen so let’s revisit in a few months.


Anyone know what the old NorBud sign inlaid in the concrete out front refers to? A former clothing store? Hope they’re able to preserve it!


33 Comment

  • congrats to the Rustik team! I’m a big fan. good food, good beer, friendly atmosphere. you’re in for a treat brookland.

  • brookland_rez

    I approve of any new establishment opening in my neighborhood that will serve good beer. Welcome Rustik!

  • I cannot wait for this and BF.

  • Looks like NorBud was a store selling nylons and related undergarments. Silver Spring: Then & Again ( has an image of a NorBud advertisement roughly halfway down its front page. There was another NorBud at 8301 Georgia Ave back in 1948.

    • There were actually quite a number of Norbud hosiery stores in the DC area in the 1940’s. The DC stores included this one on 12th NE, 14th St NW, H St NE, Penn Ave SE, Rhode Island Ave NE, Georgia Ave NW, CT Ave NW., Mass Ave Nw, and MN Ave NE.
      My understanding is that they disappeared sometime in the 1950’s but I could be wrong on that account.

  • I like this so much. Very excited for anything Brookland.

  • will they serve real Powers?

  • I love Rustik, but does Brookland really need another pizza joint?

    • Wha? You must be talking about Menomale and the &Pizza coming to Monroe Street Market. But those are all pretty spread out. Menomale is further south and can attract Brentwood residents (and frankly people from all over the city given the quality of the food), &Pizza will be very close to Catholic and the new EYA homes, and the emerging restaurant district near 12th and Monroe will probably draw people from Woodridge, Michigan Park, and Fort Totten as they are all underserved.

      And as you know, Brookland itself has just had about 1000 people move in (EYA) and is expecting over 1000 more (Monroe Street Market and 901 Monroe.

      I’ll grant that more variety would be nice (any taco trucks want to open a brick and mortar someplace??), but I think the neighborhood can support

      • Pizza Kingdom, Wings to Go, Pizza Bolis, The carry outs. They may be in a category of restaurant but still… pizza. A little variety would be nice.

  • andy

    what is/was a tamo smoothie?

  • ledroittiger

    Wish you would take the existing one off of our hands. Uninspired food. Decent drinks, I guess, and a nice space, but I can’t get past the lack of options (and good options) on the menu.

    • ^^ debbie downer

    • andy

      attention rustik: if evicted by the snobbish hordes, we’ll have you at 14th & Crittenden NW.

      Didn’t Bloomingdale just get reasonable restaurants only in the last couple years? Wow! Red Hen comes in and nobody else makes the cut?

    • I share you sentiment about the food. I like Rustik as an alternative from time to time to Boundary Stone for a drink, but the pizza is quite frankly not all that great. But, as for the development on 12th street I’ll take this over Little Rickys. While a nice addition, that place is slower than hell to get a drink or service and every time I’m in there I swear the owners are talking to patrons at the bar while there are 10 drink tickets pilled up waiting to be made. Food is solid though.

    • disagree. rustik is affordable, and a great place for brunch on saturday and sunday. their pear+rosemary(?) white pizza is great!

    • Wait, so the only reason that you want to get rid of Rustik is because their food does not “inspire” you? Please move elsewhere.

      • ledroittiger

        It’s more about value for money. For instance, Red Hen is expensive, but the food is worth the cost. I gave Rustik many, many chances before deciding to no longer give them my business. I think it has a lot of potential, but I think they need to up their game. If they don’t do that, I’d rather see someone with more motivation take over.

        Big Bear has made so many amazing changes to what they offer and how they run their business as the neighborhood grew in the past few years. A fine example of a business that got in early and didn’t just rest on their laurels.

        • ledroittiger

          One thing going for Rustik is that Andrew makes some of the best bloody marys in the city. Then again, you can get them at the Stone on weekends.

        • Rustik is amazing! If you don’t like it don’t go there

        • You are certainly entitled to your opinion not to like the menu presented by Rustik, but it is absurd based on your assessment alone to banish it from the neighborhood.

          • ledroittiger

            You act as if I have the ability to do that…

          • My only act is to remark on the imperious tone of your wish to have Rustik “taken off our hands”. Dot dot dot. I won’t remark on my belief in your abilities.

  • I cannot walk past that CVS down at the end of the street, without thinking that it’s giving me the middle finger.

  • i like rustik and i like the spot they’re claiming in b-land. their menu is pretty good for the price, I’d give it a B+. I actually like their pizza more than menomale but another pizza place in brookland is kinda over doin it. there’s the carry-outs, domino’s, menomale, &pizza, and now rustik. However, with rustik comes decent beer and they have options other than pizza….

  • Their brunch is definitely solid. My one wish is for them to add a breakfast pizza.

  • I’m just excited to see a new non-fast food restaurant in the neighborhood! We need it! I understand comparing it to Menomale, but to Pizza Bolis/Wings to Go/Pizza Kingdom, really? Rustik will offer seating, beer and according to their menu, food options other than pizza.

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