On 14th Street sits Doi Moi, a bright, white and enormous restaurant that serves up delicious southeast Asian food to much fanfare, having been awarded both an A+ for brunch from these Bitches and a Michelin Bib Gourmand nod. Inside Doi Moi lies Birds Eye Eatery, a brainchild of Johanna Hellrigl, the newly minted executive chef for the restaurant group which also owns Estadio and Proof.
Birds Eye is a coffee bar and eatery dedicated to southeast Asian-inspired breakfast, inspired by Chef Hellrigl’s travels through southeast Asia and her time spend in the kitchens of matriarchs across the region. Not only is the food inventive and delicious, but it’s a welcome addition to previously limited weekday breakfast options on 14th Street and in Washington.
Birds Eye Eatery serves breakfast and lunch from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., and the healthy options make it a great post-ride destination for the SoulCyclers across the street. The breakfast menu offers house-made Asian baked goods, smoothie bowls, fruit bowls, chia seed puddings, and egg sandwiches, all available to go or to stay.
The coffee program at Birds Eye Eatery is exceptional—with classic coffees, coffee cocktails, and Vietnamese-style coffees. The coffee is sourced from Counter Culture, a great East Coast roaster, while the nitro flash brew is made by Junius Coffee. By way of non-dairy options, all coffee is made with a house-made oat and coconut milk blend, which is vegan and dairy free. I sipped on the frozen Vietnamese iced coffee, a blended coffee that was sort of like a slushy, but fortunately not as sweet as traditional Vietnamese coffee. It was divine—and I plan to treat myself to one after SoulCycle soon.
If you order to go, all coffee is served in environmentally sustainable, compostable sugarcane coffee boxes. Bitches give bonus points for environmentally-friendly efforts.
By way of bowls, there’s a papaya smoothie bowl, a fruit bowl, and a parfait. The granola is both gluten-free and vegan, a house-made sweet, salty, and oh-so-crunchy granola that’s damn delicious.
We loved the bright pink dragon fruit bowl, a pitaya smoothie poured into a bowl and served with sliced bananas, goji berries, and that delicious granola. This is basically the perfect breakfast: light, sweet, healthy, and packed with superfoods.
We also enjoyed the chia seed pudding, a passionfruit chia pudding layered with macerated pineapple and mango. It’s a great smaller dish to have as a snack or alongside a pastry.
The pastries and the egg Banh Mi are exceptional. The cardamom roll is a house-made Sri Lankan cinnamon bun, moist and fluffy and topped with vanilla bean icing.
The Doi Nut is something else: an impossibly fluffy doughnut filled with Thai iced tea and a hard, brûleéd sugar coating on top. It’s a lovely combo: fluffy breading, smooth, creamy and sweet filling, and hard sugary coating in each bite. If you’re like me and you’ve not previously enjoyed Asian pastries, the Doi Nut will make you a believer. Chef Hellrigl can be counted on to convert you.
Now, these sandwiches are something else. First: the size. They’re massive. Then, the bread: perfect loaves of French bread from Lyon Bakery, cut in half. Then, the Southeast Asian flavors and high-quality meats bring it all together. There are three sandwich options: bacon (a five-spice fish caramel-glazed bacon), sausage (a proprietary Southeast Asian blend made in partnership with Logan Sausage) and a chickpea tofu. Each sandwich is made to order with two sunny-side up eggs, pickled vegetables, and signature Asian sauces.
The sausage sandwich was simply perfect. The sausage oozed flavor, and the spicy, creamy sauce slathered across the soft bread was just something else. This might just be the perfect breakfast sandwich.
The Bitches say: A+ for a delicious spot for incredible breakfast Banh Mi, healthy smoothie bowls, and delicious coffee, all with Southeast Asian flair, available to go or to stay, every day of the week.
Birds Eye Eatery (in Doi Moi)
1800 14th St. N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20009