Tag Archives: Public Option

Kolache-nation

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Photo from Tori Avey with recipe here.

My mother is upset. The kolaches at Public Option are not true kolaches, says she. “They must be Texas kolaches,” she claims with disdain.

There is no food that has not been subject to alterations, incarnations, elaborations in some major US city in 2017. Foodies have indelibly fused anything and everything that anyone recalls eating from days gone by. My mother is 89 and she knows kolaches.

According to the website of Verdigre, Nebraska, the “Kolach Capital of the World“,

Kolaches, a favorite Czech and Slovak dessert originating from Eastern Europe, are baked pastries of yeast dough with delicious fruit filling. Some fillings include prune, poppy seed, apricot, cherry, & cottage cheese.

Thanks to Steve Hildreth for the inside on Verdigre.

My mother is in this camp. With heels dug in next to her tent stakes. She has plenty of company and, to be frank, I’m with her. The kolaches I know from childhood in Wisconsin and from my own kitchen are open and filled with something sweet. That said, the kolaches at Public Option are totally delicious and I plan to go often for half-smoke kolaches and a beer.

‘Show him the spiced plums, mother. Americans don’t have those,’ said one of the older boys. ‘Mother uses them to make kolaches,’ he added. Leo, in a low voice, tossed off some scornful remark in Bohemian. I turned to him. ‘You think I don’t know what kolaches are, eh? You’re mistaken, young man. I’ve eaten your mother’s kolaches long before that Easter Day when you were born.’

– Willa Cather’s novel My Antonia (1918), about Bohemian immigrants in Nebraska in the 1880s

Hotcha! Hot Kolaches in Langdon

I thought I knew a thing or two about kolaches. My two things: they are czech and the filling is pressed into the top. Plus, one can absolutely find them in Wisconsin and Texas. Today we ate Polish kolaches in Washington, DC and they were round, browned buns of sweet dough, the top sprinkled frugally with sesame sides and the filling encased. I have always known kolaches to have sweet fillings – apricot, cheese and others – but not today. Beef and cheese, half smoke and saag paneer. Worlds collide.

FullSizeRender-2Today was a beautiful day for a visit to Public Option on Rhode Island Avenue, NE to eat hot kolaches and drink beer. Prelude to a nap,
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“What’s for lunch?” he said. “Kolaches,” I said. “Dough and meat. You’ll like it.”

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Half smoke kolaches, saag paneer kolaches. Well, I never! And brown ale. Sleepy Sunday afternoon. If this is brunch, I can handle it. Screen Shot 2017-04-02 at 5.10.52 PM

Welcome to The Public Option

The Public Option is a brew pub.  We make all our draft beer on site, and try to maintain a well balanced selection of 8 varieties at all times including 3 darker, more malty beers, 3 paler beers with a focus on the hops (often delicate), and 2 more experimental brews.

Read on here.

Public Option is cozy. If we lived nearby – dang, I wish we did – we’d be there a lot.  The owner is talkative, enthused, and talking up the bigger menu to come. And live music upstairs in the not-too-distant future.

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According to the website, this spot pays a “living wage” and discourages tips, but with a smile like his…and our general discomfort with not tipping…what to do??? We tipped.

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