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Best Quirky Food Spot in D.C.: Fast Gourmet | Restaurants

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Best Quirky Food Spot in D.C.: Fast Gourmet
Best Quirky Food Spot in D.C.: Fast Gourmet

It was a little over a month ago that I was first exposed to Fast Gourmet.  I saw a reader's note on Prince of Petworth's blog about a gourmet sandwich shop hidden inside of a "sketchy gas station" at the corners of 14th and W Streets in Northwest.

I was intrigued, but not yet convinced enough to try it out.  I mean, come on, good food in a gas station?  That's an oxymoron.  I needed more evidence.  So I went on Yelp to read more customer reviews, and what I saw...was astonishing.

Each review was more positive than last.  Each described how bizarre the location was, but also, how delicious the food was.

"Wow what an awesome dining experience," Wrote one Yelp user 'Roger'.  "I was walking around looking for a new U St. area place to eat and stumbled upon fast gourmet.  This place is as unique as you get.  The restaurant is in the former quickie mart part of the gas station and serves gourmet food."

After sifting through all the reviews, essentially searching for a reason not to get food from a place located in a gas station, I found nothing.  So I decided to push aside my fears and try it...and boy am I happy I did.

The food at Fast Gourmet is outstanding, and the Fast Gourmet experience itself is bizarre in a totally cool, unique, quirky way.

In D.C., a metropolis where originality is sometimes hard to find, Fast Gourmet is the definition of the word.

First, the menu is diverse, offering everything from top-round lamb wraps to Black Angus and chorizo meatball subs, from a to die for pineapple pulled pork barbecue sandwich with lemon grass coleslaw to the Chivito, a member of true sandwich royalty, that features, among other things, beef tenderloin, Mozzarella, and Black Forest Ham.  

Everything I've had from Fast Gourmet has been incredibly good, and everyone I've ever talked to about Fast Gourmet has said the same thing.  The breads, meats, and other ingredients that are used are all top of the line delicious.

“Half of the things we use are actually organic, the other half of our stuff is locally sourced,” Fast Gourmet General Manager and Co-owner Manuel Olivera said.  “You will find on our menu sandwiches made out of filet mignon and Black Angus beef.”

The ambiance of Fast Gourmet is what’s truly hilarious.  The gas station itself is one of those “Lowest Price” stations that are littered here and there throughout the city.  Inside, what you expect to be a dingy mini-mart has been converted into a wonderfully clean, chic, hip eating area, with a flat-screen television and speakers that blast some rockin’ tunes.

Oh, and did I mention they stay open until 5 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays?  Or that they deliver?  Yeah, Fast Gourmet is that awesome.

If you haven’t been to Fast Gourmet yet, you really need to go.  And if you have fears of eating food from a gas station, put them aside.

“People should come here to experience unique dining and carry-out…and the reason to come here is the food,” Olivera said.  “You will be greatly surprised, and it will be the best food you’ll have in a gas station in D.C.”

That's selling the food short.  Fast Gourmet serves some of the best sandwiches you'll eat in the entire city.  

Check out the video above to find out more about Fast Gourmet, as well as their plans for possible expansion in the future.