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Bethesda’s New Gluten-Free Bakery Is Here

Sweet and savory Red Bandana debuts November 11

A gluten-free cupcake from Red Bandana Bakery.
Photo: Red Bandana Bakery

Founding Farmers alum Jamie Mertz this weekend is graduating from farmers market fixture to full-fledged store owner with the debut Saturday, November 11, of her brick-and-mortar Red Bandana Bakery.

In addition to carrying the gluten-free cakes and grain-free breads Mertz has been selling for years out of her hard-to-miss red Volkswagen Vanagon, the new addition to the Bethesda dining scene (8218 Wisconsin Avenue) is bringing fruity oatmeal breakfast bowls ($4), egg sandwiches topped with kimchi ($5), and peppery avocado toast ($5) to the table. There’s also seasonal soups, salads, cheesy focaccias, and fruit-spiked sparkling waters. All of the items on the menu are gluten-free, and about half the menu is vegan.

“Our specialty is still the custom cakes, which we create for birthdays, weddings, mitzvahs, and showers — we just ask 48 hours advance notice,” Mertz tells Eater. Many of her specialty treats — think: rainbow sprinkles-studded cookies ($2 each), banana-chocolate chip muffins ($3), and salted caramel cupcakes ($3) — were inspired by the need to strip casein and gluten from her autistic brother’s diet.

The bakery is projected to operate from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday, from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Fridays, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. The grand opening celebration is set to include free samples, live music, and a raffle.

Status: Scheduled to open at 10 a.m, Saturday, November 11. 8218 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Md.; website.

Check out the full menus below.

The breakfast and lunch menu at Red Bandana Bakery.
Photo: Red Bandana Bakery
The sweet side of Red Bandana’s opening menu.
Photo: Red Bandana Bakery
The beverage menu at Red Bandana Bakery.
Photo: Red Bandana Bakery