37 Comment

  • jim_ed

    Awesome! Now if someone can open up a Bloodlettery and a Brain Tonic dispensery, we can round out our pseudoscience retail needs in the city.

    • Do your research, Jim. I’m celiac and I’d kill for a gluten free bagel. Unlike you (I presume, since you made that nasty comment), I don’t have the luxury of popping into any bagel shop and buying one.

    • I’m pretty sure Jim is more referring to the “gluten-free lifestyle” of people without celiac’s disease, which has become a super-fad. Actual celiacs are a really small population.

      • Yeah well, he didn’t say that did he?

      • jim_ed

        Exactly. This business is taking advantage of a factless hysteria. Celiacs make up roughly 0.71% of the US population, whereas millions upon millions more of Americans have convinced themselves that they’re Gluten intolerant, which, like the MSG allergies of yore, isn’t actually a real thing. Its taking advantage of people’s insecurities, like a store selling anti-chemtrail spray or healing crystals.

        • And you care because…?

        • Except that’s not a logical comparison, Jim. A healing crystal doesn’t help anyone. (Good) Gluten free food provides an alternative for celiacs. While a small part of the population, there are celiacs who would love these kind of businesses (myself included). So should these businesses not open and not serve who medically cannot eat gluten?

          Maybe people should do their research and understand how they may be taken advantage of, as you’re suggesting (which does happen – and those people annoy me too). But it’s not true for all individuals who want gluten free food and most of us who are celiac are frustrated by the popularity too. It makes business owners and individuals like yourself take actual celiacs less seriously.

          (Sorry for posting below comment twice. I thought it got censored for language!)

        • There are a lot of stores I don’t shop at because I am not interested in the products they sell. Should each one of them be closed?

    • Some people actually can’t have gluten, jerk.

    • Jim, I hope you know how hurtful and uninformed your comment is. It appears as if you have only read headlines and gone with what popular media sources say about gluten free and have made assumptions about why other individuals may have to eat gluten free.
      Not everyone who is eating gluten free is doing so because they read pseudo-science. I’m celiac and relieved to now know why I was sick on and off with a variety of symptoms for over 15 years. I’m much healthier and happier without gluten – and much less likely to someday face infertility, stomach cancer, etc (http://celiac.org/celiac-disease/what-is-celiac-disease/).
      However, that doesn’t mean this former fan of sandwiches, bagels, and beer doesn’t miss the convenience of popping into a shop and buying a bagel. I can’t do that often and places in the D.C. area aren’t as plentiful as you may suspect. (Although, I am a fan of Capitol City Cheesecake in Takoma – great sandwiches, baked goods, sweets, and okay bagels). And most gluten free baking isn’t as tasty as the real stuff.
      I’m eager to try Rise’s offerings and hope they won’t be discouraged by simplistic sarcasm like Jim’s response. It must be nice to order a bagel anywhere and not immediately feel ill within an hour and for days afterwards. I miss that and suspect Jim takes it for granted if he could make such a nasty comment.

      • It was probably the gluten talking.

      • +1 from someone who also has Celiac and misses crusty bread!

        Though I will say I do get frustrated by some of the fad dieters and the restaurants and other establishments that cater to them with “gluten free” offerings with little regard to carefully checking ingredients, taking measures to prevent cross-contamination, and training staff to understand Celiac and other conditions that require a strict gluten free diet.

        In some ways this makes dedicated bakeries such as Rise and Happy Tart in Alexandria (fantastic if you are missing flaky pastries–I nearly wept with joy when I tried their turnovers) even more welcome because they take those with these special dietary needs seriously.

    • Oh no! A store is opening that YOU don’t want to shop at! Sorry, Jimbo. They can’t all be Jerkstores.

    • All of your comments on this blog are so negative. I have an image of you at home, alone, clicking refresh hoping you can find new content to be nasty about. Why are you so mean?

  • Jim, please do your research before making assumptions that everyone who would appreciate a gluten free bakery is following “pseudo science.”. Gluten free is trendy right now, but there are actually people who are celiac, which is an autoimmune disorder where gluten IS actually incredibly damaging to the intestines and continued exposure causes stomach cancer, infertility, and a host of other health issues (http://celiac.org/celiac-disease/what-is-celiac-disease/).

    I was diagnosed finally as celiac in my late twenties and relieved to finally find out why I had so many frustrating and complicated health problems for years. Now, I am considerably healthier but would kill for a freshly baked bagel, cookie, or loaf of crusty bread. Individuals with celiac disease, ulcerative colitis, and other health needs that it seems like you are lucky enough to avoid are probably just as excited as I am to walk into a store and order a bagel on a Saturday morning.

    Maybe you thought this was funny – but it made you come off as a simple asshole who doesn’t move beyond simple news headlines and consider who may actually need this kind of service. I appreciated your take on certain issues on this forum and you just lost a considerable amount of credibility.

    • As someone with Ulcerative Colitis, I can tell you that gluten has absolutely nothing to do with it. But, this is great news for the celiacs out there, I guess.

  • This reminds me of Anonymous’s girlfriend, from a RRR a few days ago. The one who follows fad diets, but makes her partner do all the cooking, with the threat that if he doesn’t, she’ll get so hungry that she’ll eat something that will make her sick.
    I know one person who has Celiac disease. I know a dozen people who jerk others around for the sake of their “lifestyle”. And you know what’s interesting? The person I know with Celiac (and the two actually lactose intolerant people, and the one with Crohn’s) always says “We can go wherever you like; I’ll find something.” The only people who announce “I can’t go there– I’m Gluten Free” are the fakers who are doing it for social control.

    • I do usually make it work, but I feel annoying to wait staff who are used dealing with fad diet people. Even if I order a salad, I need to check if the dressing will have gluten (many do). Lately, so many more places are creating menus with real ingredients and it’s genuinely easier to eat out. I suspect this is why many of your friends say they will figure it out. We often do because we don’t want to be different or change where a group wants to go.
      I’m just excited about a place where I won’t have to research the menu and question staff about ingredients. I can just walk in, order, and walk out.

      • “but I feel annoying to wait staff who are used dealing with fad diet people’
        OK, but then in fairness you should give jim_ed at least a bit of credit for wanting to take the air out of the gluten-free fad. That was his actual intention, even if his delivery rubbed you the wrong way.

      • “we don’t want to be different”. Exactly. Whereas there are 10 times as many people who are gluten free BECAUSE it lets them be different, and in charge of what everyone else does.

        • Who are you hanging out with and why do you let them do that? This just seems to be misdirected frustration at your inability to stand up to manipulative people in your social circle. Besides, did you know that 76.32% of statistics are made up on the spot? 😉

          • I DID know that! I actually read that study, and not just the summary on Wired’s Twitter feed about it. 😉
            Anyway, no, my friends don’t do this. Thank god. I’ve worked with people who have tried to control entire departments with their dietary “needs”, and I have a brother-in-law who… oof. Let’s just say it’s never the same fad diet twice, and it’s NEVER negotiable. We once walked around a freezing city on a winter night for almost an hour, while he read the menus at each restaurant, and then nixed it and said we had to go elsewhere. And my sister let him! “I just want us all to be respectful…” Shaddup. No one gets more than two vetoes, and even that is pushing it hard.

    • Everyone knows his or her fair share of drama kings/queens, for sure. But what does that have to do with this place? Looking at their website, there doesn’t appear to be any promotion of pseudo-science or fad diets, only simple statements about being able to accommodate a number of specialty diets. Seems pretty reasonable to me. Regardless, if it allows people with celiac disease (and I am not one) a chance at some decent bread I’m all for it. Why not? It’s not my investment so I have nothing to lose here. And I might even stop in for a baguette or something when I’m hosting a dinner party and one of my friends with celiac disease is coming — I have a few.

      • +1. I’m getting very frustrated with the pot shots people here take on almost every post involving “special” food or diets. If a place with vegan or vegetarian food opens, there will be bacon jokes every single time. Now people are laying into a place that serves gluten free foods. Is the snark really necessary? Yes, there are drama kings and queens out there, but the lame jokers and critics of pseudo-science annoy me way more.

        • Ok, as long as you’re calling out the vegetarians and vegans who post on EVERY new restaurant announcement whining about the lack of meat-free options.
          Not every business has to be for every consumer. Period.
          (And really, I didn’t read jim_ed’s comment as specific to Rise. It WAS about the drama queens and kings who claim to have ailments when they’re really just controlling. Then again, Rise can’t hope to succeed if less than one percent of the population needs their product, so they have to cater to the control/ drama types, and thus encourage them. I get jim_ed. But I don’t care to die on that hill.)

          • It doesn’t work like that though. People with celiac, vegetarians, etc. CANNOT (or will not for ethical, religious, or other reasons) eat gluten, meat, etc. You and I will survive without meat or gluten for one day.
            Offering a few reasonable veggie/gluten-free options isn’t that hard, and it just makes good business sense. Unless you’re a BBQ restaurant/traditional bakery, I suppose.

          • I don’t they’re equivalent. The posts that bother me are posts that seem belittling or even bullying. You’re describing people who are asking, usually politely, to be accommodated. I would agree with you that not every business is for every customer and that’s fine with me. But I’m not sure why people who wouldn’t shop at a certain business think they should put down the people who do. It just seems small-minded.

          • I don’t _think_ they are equivalent.

    • You’re so spot on about the social control.

  • I’m sure if the product is good, it will do well and also be able to do deliveries for restaurants and shops that want to stock gluten free baked goods. My problem has been that (not being celiac) when I try gluten free items that are trying to be something else (unlike say a pupusa or rice noodles) its usually gross.

  • Please someone tell me that the prices they list on their website for pastries and bagels are per dozen, not each.

    • They do not appear to be per piece. Some are for a dozen, some are for 4. Click on each product and it says how many per order.

  • Difficult neighborhood for this concept given that many other businesses (bars/restaurants) in the immediate area do not open until 4 or 5 pm. And not too much density (we’ll see what the new developments bring in the next couple years).

    May seem like a little thing, but the walk-up can be a big problem for may businesses.

    Not impressed by the look of the place inside nor the website. If they make it past 12 months, awesome.

    • Agreed about the website, but I suspect a place like this isn’t relying on walk-up business. Given its specialty, it’s probably counting on people seeking it out.

      • My point was that it is a “walk-up” – that is to say, you have to walk up a short flight of stairs to get to the place. In my experience, regardless of a customer knowing the street address (and the store having plenty of signage) many just can’t figure out that “no, the store isn’t at street level” its just up the stairs.

        Agreed. To do well, this place will have to be a “destination” that folks seek out.

        At the same time, I can tell you that lots of folks will read “gluten free” and think to themselves, “I just want a croissant” not this “gluten free” stuff regardless of how good it might taste. This is similar to how some folks are just turned off by anything labeled vegan.

  • So I thought I’d post a little review here in the off chance folks from Rise see it… I’ll keep it short and to the point.
    While the quality of the food is wonderful, the service is not. The individual working the register on opening day was not at all personable, nor were they capable/willing to keep up with the long line of people waiting to order/ to pick up their order. While one person in particular seemed to mean very well, they were clearly overwhelmed on day one, and on day two as well from what I hear. Hopefully this will work itself out with time, but here’s my experience:
    Arrived at 10:30am on opening day, 30 min after opening, to a long line to order and to pick up your order. Hearing the many people ahead of us turned away because they were out of stock/food was in the oven, we decided to place an order for 6 bagels to pick up later in the afternoon. We were told this would be fine, and they actually seemed to welcome it.
    3 hours later (they asked us to come back in 2-3 hours), we returned, receipt in hand. After waiting in another very long line to get to the register, we were told they had sold out of bagels, but they did save us 2. They also offered us free choice of other goodies to make up for the mishap. We were understanding, and simply excited to have a celiac friendly bagel so we happily agreed. After arriving home, we realized they had given us the completely wrong order and ended up with 0 bagels, 2 fruit tartes, 2 cinnamon rolls and 2 cheese danishes.

    The food is incredible, and I sincerely hope they work out their kinks…especially having someone a little more capable at the register.

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