Fast-growing D.C. newcomer Bluestone Lane is gearing up to double its local footprint by opening two more locations this summer. In addition, its inaugural shop in the West End will be the first D.C location to serve alcohol.
The budding Australian brand recently locked down a new store at 1150 Connecticut Avenue NW that is scheduled to open in August, marketing director Andrew Stone tells Eater. That arrival will come on the heels of a previously announced location arriving this summer in the lobby of Skanska’s new mixed-use building at 99 M Street SE. Both of the new shops are projected to occupy about 1,000 square feet each.
The global chain known for its “avocado smash” toast, cold-pressed juices, and other healthy fare debuted in the District earlier this year. That standalone shop — it’s largest to date at 2,200 square feet — features its gourmet coffee, indoor/outdoor seating, and assorted baked goods.
The West End cafe just secured its alcohol permit and plans to sell various wines and beers including sauvignon blancs from New Zealand, imported shiraz, and lesser-known labels like Perth’s Little Creatures, known for its hoppy beers. Hours could also be extended as a result of adding booze into the mix, Stone says. An expanded menu of small plates and charcuterie may also follow. A handful of its existing cafes also serve alcohol, with New York housing two Bluestone Lane cocktail bars. Another is headed for Los Angeles. As of now there aren’t plans to integrate alcohol at the upcoming locations in downtown D.C. or Navy Yard.
Stone says the D.C. market has been a success so far, thanks to instant fans from the Australian Embassy and local college kids looking for a place to work and wind down. Its second, smaller counter shop opened this spring in Georgetown, attached to retailer Fyre. Stone says that location is looking to grow by potentially utilizing the leather goods destination’s upstairs space for additional seating.
Meanwhile, competition from other expansion-minded coffee shops keeps growing. New York-based Gregorys Coffee has sprinkled several stores downtown, and a slew of shops are on the way from San Francisco’s Blue Bottle Coffee. Its latest D.C. location is scheduled to open Sunday, May 27 in Union Station.
Bluestone Lane’s new Navy Yard location will sit a stone’s throw from Philz Coffee, which is expanding to Ballston and Dupont Circle this year. A new Montauk, New York location, set to open Memorial Day weekend, will sell eight “of the best Aussie summer brands” inside the Hamptons store, Stone says.