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Republic Kolache’s Debut Restaurant Aims to Bring ‘Good, Proper Tex-Mex’ to D.C.

The pop-up bakery plans to serve queso, tacos, and margaritas in Truxton Circle

Tacos are on the menu at Republic Kolache’s new restaurant, Republic Cantina.
Photo: Republic Kolache

After years of supplying homesick Texans with sweet and savory pastries at pop-up friendly establishments around town, homegrown bakery Republic Kolache is going even bigger next summer in Truxton Circle with new broader-themed restaurant, Republic Cantina.

“We're looking to bring good, proper Tex-Mex to the District for the first time (something that anecdotally after meeting 1000s of Texans at the popup I can tell you is widely agreed to be lacking),” Republic Kolache co-founder Chris Svetlik says of the plan for the inaugural brick-and-mortar eatery taking shape at 57 N Street NW.

In addition to serving the coveted pastries that fans have gobbled up in record numbers these past few years, Svetlik plans to take on a new set of culinary challenges.

Menu items in the works for Republic Cantina include: sizzling fajita platters sporting smoked brisket rather than steak; a chorizo-, carnitas-, and Manchego-filled sandwich that’s deep-fried (Monte Cristo-style) and served with guava jam; French toast made with oversized pieces of Texas toast; and doughnuts prepared using kolache dough. Svetlik predicts that tacos will be filled smoked meats and wrapped in freshly made flour tortillas, red and green salsas will be dispatched with crunchy chips, and frozen margaritas will arrive with a salted rim.

Cantina, which is projected to serve breakfast, lunch, and dinner, seven days a week, will keep early risers in coffee and kolache just as Republic Kolache currently does each weekend at Hill Country.

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