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Sunday Morning Bakehouse draws inspiration from a rustic farmhouse and Midcentury modern design elements.
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Montgomery County Has a New Cafe Selling ‘Elvis’ Croissants

Sunday Morning Bakehouse opens in North Bethesda

Tierney Plumb is the editor of Eater DC, covering all things food and drink around the nation's capital.

A new standalone bakery selling savory and sweet croissants that have garnered a fanatical following at a local farmers market opened this morning inside North Bethesda’s Pike & Rose complex.

Sunday Morning Bakehouse comes from Caroline Yi, a self-taught chef and Montgomery County native who worked at A Baked Joint and in New York kitchens. Yi is selling brioche doughnuts filled with seasonal jams, naturally leavened breads, and sandwiches at the budding complex (11869 Grand Park Avenue) that’s just a short drive from where she grew up.

Along with French croissants that take three days to make, the 2,500-square-foot bakery and cafe serves French omelets, herb-baked eggs, and toasts topped with jam or avocados and sea salt. For lunch, there’s a three-cheese grilled cheese and a tuna salad sandwich with sprouts on brioche. The last one is Yi’s mom’s recipe.

Funky twists on classics include a twice-baked “Elvis” croissant, stuffed with with roasted peanut filling, fresh bananas, and crispy bacon. Another hit from the farmers market, a spin on Thanksgiving dinner, will likely make an appearance this season. Pieces of a whole-roasted turkey and gravy go into twice-baked croissants that are slathered with a homemade cranberry jam. Yi is currently accepting special orders for her challah through Yom Kippur.

The croissants lineup includes twice-baked almond (pictured), chocolate, matcha green tea, and cinnamon sugar cruffins.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC
Chef Caroline Yi in the kitchen.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC

Yi, who started baking cookies for her family as a 7-year-old, ditched her career in digital marketing and has spent the past four years perfecting recipes.

“This is probably the scariest and biggest thing I’ve ever done, but this is what I’m meant to be doing,” says Yi, 27. “there’s nothing else I could stand on my feet for 16, 20 hours a day doing and still want to do it the next day.”

She wanted the design at the cafe to reflect a “farmhouse-meets-Midcentury modern” feel. The space rewards market regulars with a place to kick back and relax. The 50-seat setup is a mix of four-tops, communal seats, wooden booths, and soft grey lounge areas.

“I want them to feel comfortable — I didn’t want the look to come off feeling too sophisticated and modern,” she says.

Brioche doughnut flavors will change week to week.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC
Oak chairs feature an antiqued finish.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC

She came across the quote splashed across a white brick wall wall (“Lust is Saturday night; Love is Sunday morning”) two years ago while toying with name ideas for a bakery. As a kid, her dad worked six days a week — and Sunday mornings were a cherished time to bond over bacon and biscuits with family.

“It resonated with me so much,” Yi says. She immediately made it the background on her phone.

Ample electrical outlets inside encourage customers to linger. Coffee from Annapolis-based roaster Ceremony will perk up teleworkers.

The cafe opens weekdays from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will start at 8 a.m. on weekends. Yi expects to start serving alcohol later this month. She likes the idea of turning into a wine bar at 3 p.m.

She plans to serve Irish coffees alongside a concise lineup of specialty cocktails made with gin, a dark whiskey, and tequila (her spirit of choice).

Pike & Rose now includes a Sweetgreen, French-Mediterranean Julii, and a newly reopened Taylor Gourmet. West Elm is scheduled to open there this Thursday.

Loaves of bread from Sunday Morning Bakehouse
“Our breakfast sandwich is simple but it’s high quality — the brioche bun is baked 12 hours ago. It’s the little touches I think that really deliver a special experience,” she says.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC
A porcelain backsplash, potted plants, and a live edge service station created a warm vibe at Sunday Morning Bakehouse.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC
“Sunday mornings always held that nostalgic, warm feeling for me,” she says.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC
She envisions the space being a respite to do work, hang out with friends for a few hours, or be “a moment of peace” for moms after they drop off the kids at school.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC
Her parents, who had a say in the design, are obsessed with Restoration Hardware. “My mom love that French country vibe,” she says.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC

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