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Rey Lopez/Eater DC

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See Inside Mason Dixie Biscuit Co.’s ‘Happy,’ Retro Diner in Shaw

The destination for Southern staples opens Saturday

Mason Dixie Biscuit Co. CEO Ayeshah Abuelhiga had one big goal for the design of her company’s new outpost in Shaw. “When you walk in, it just feels happy,” she said. “You know you’re going to have a good time, and that’s exactly what we’re trying to go for.”

Patrons can judge for themselves at the new location for the biscuit business at 1819 7th Street NW, which opens Saturday at 8 a.m. The former home of Drift on 7th is now covered in murals from D.C. artists No Kings Collective, and the pink and teal drawings illustrate the history of Mason Dixie Biscuit Co. in D.C. “It’s like an old-school soda pop/diner look,” Abuelhiga said, calling out the vintage chairs and retro accents in the space.

This is the latest physical location for Mason Dixie Biscuit Co.’s sandwiches, which showcase fried chicken, bacon, and pulled pork, after the business closed its previous drive-thru location on Bladensburg Road NE this spring. Abuelhiga and her team worked with architects at HapstakDemetriou to maximize the new Shaw space and include elements they wished they could’ve incorporated at the drive-thru (like plenty of counter seating for single diners). There’s also room for a test kitchen for experimental biscuit flavors.

”We’re trying to do a combination between fast-casual and full-service so that we can allow for the most optimal guest experience,” she explained. There will be a hostess to guide diners to tables, staff will pick up trash, and there will be signs that flip around that indicate whether the restaurant is on dine-in or to-go status.

Expect a crowd Saturday when Mason Dixie Biscuit Co. opens: the first 100 customers will get a punch card for five free naked chicken biscuits.

The murals in the Shaw location pay tribute to the previous building on Bladensburg Road NE.
The chairs and stools give the dining room a retro diner feel.
The kitchen at Mason Dixie Biscuit Co. will crank out sandwiches featuring fried chicken, bacon, and pulled pork.
Mason Dixie Biscuit Co.’s diner-style seating in Shaw
The original location near Union Market closed down this spring.
The decor include “funky things along the wall,” Abuelhiga said.
CEO Ayesha Abuelhiga wants the design to let diners know they’re in for a good time.
Pink and teal colors dominate the art on the walls.
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