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California Coffee Chain Peet’s Pulls Out of Its H Street Location

But three more area locations are in the works

Peet’s just ditched plans to open at 528 H Street NE.
Tierney Plumb is the editor of Eater DC, covering all things food and drink around the nation's capital.

About a year after announcing a lease in the Atlas District, San Francisco-based java giant Peet’s is now scratching plans for that location because its configuration wasn’t working out.

The dead deal sits on a corner next to the new Whole Foods at 528 H Street NE.

“They weren’t really able to make the space physically work. It’s a two-level space and was fairly small on the ground floor,” says Rappaport executive director of brokerage Bill Dickinson, who represents Peet’s.

Peet’s is now working on subleasing the 2,250-square-foot space, and Dickinson’s in discussions with “a number” of food and beverage tenants to take over the 10-year lease.

“In light of how active a market this is, we are confident we will find someone to take it,” he tells Eater.

Peet’s is still in full-blown expansion mode in the D.C. area, however, and close to announcing two new locations in Virginia and one in Maryland. Dickinson declined to disclose addresses because the deals have not yet closed.

This year, Peet’s expanded to Northeast with the opening of a location at 1275 First Street NE.

“There isn’t a lack of people selling coffee these days. It’s really about finding an opportunity that makes economic sense. Rents are so high in D.C. you have to have that right combination of daytime and neighborhood to make that work,” he says.

He notes H Street NE lunch business is “still low” and says Peet’s is currently looking across the city for another D.C. location.

Peet’s director of real estate Jason Dedmore has called D.C. a “priority market,” with more than two dozen Peet’s shops popping up in the D.C. area over the past few years (including a one-of-a kind slow bar that opened in 2016 in Georgetown).

To accommodate growth, Peet’s is opening an East Coast roastery in Suffolk, Va. The brand, founded in Berkeley, Calif. in 1966, has hundreds of locations coast to coast.