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Mainstay Cafe Slipstream Opens a New Coffee Shop Downtown for Weekly Previews

The D.C. coffee shop will start selling single-origin coffees, teas, toasts, and pastries on Thursdays

Avocado toast from Slipstream
Avocado toast from Slipstream
Slipstream [official]

Slipstream, the all-day cafe that built a local following in Logan Circle and Navy Yard with single-origin coffees, loose-leaf teas, toasts, rice bowls, and cocktails, is ready to show off a new location downtown. Starting May 13, the shop on the ground floor of an office building at 1201 New York Avenue NW will open from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Thursday until the neighborhood’s workforce returns to offices and creates more demand.

Owners Ryan Fleming and Miranda Mirabella have a small space with a separate entrance on Eye Street NW, an ordering counter, a coffee bar with room for four stools, and three booths inside. The renovated building with an airy atrium also houses Bobby Van’s steakhouse and has common areas that will eventually add more tables for lounging. Online ordering is available here.

“We don’t want to be the normal downtown vending machine of coffee,” Fleming says.

The separate entrance at Slipstream’s new location
Slipstream’s new location has its on entrance on Eye Street NW between 12th and 13th Streets.
Gabe Hiatt/Eater D.C.

Slipstream frequently tries out different roasters, but its core group includes D.C.’s Small Planes, Blanchard’s from Richmond, Virginia, and Mad Cap from Grand Rapids, Michigan. With its color-coded #FindYourCup approach, Slipstream tries to help customers identify their tastes and sell them on broad categories of coffees instead of explaining the nitty gritty of sourcing, washing, and processing.

A gray category, labeled Comfort, is Mad Cap’s Six One Six roast, long the standard drip cup at Slipstream. Other categories include Floral coffees in green cups, Bright and acidic coffees in yellow cups, and Fruit-forward coffees in pink cups. Slipstream’s downtown location uses a Gold Cup machine capable of brewing in batches or individual cups, which Healey says offers a more precise process than pour-overs made by hand. Coffee tasting kits that come with two types of vacuum-packed grounds also help customers identify favorites.

The food menu at Slipstream’s downtown location will follow its other locations with an emphasis on breakfast sandwiches, pastries, and grab-and-go yogurt parfaits. There will eventually be a happy hour to cater to the after-work crowd, too.