Hip City Veg founder Nicole Marquis welcomed Washingtonians to her latest location in Dupont Circle on Wednesday (7/24/19) afternoon. Showing off DC’s 2nd location (the first is in Chinatown and another is planned for Navy yard later this year) of her Philadelphia-based fast casual brand, Marquis enticed locals to the grand opening with the promise of a “free lunch” for the first 100 people in line — and free sweet potatoes all day.
Lines wrapped down the block and around the corner with hundreds of people queuing up to try Hip City Veg’s plant-based menu. This location, which will actually be Hip City Veg’s headquarters for its catering operation, also boasts an all-new Banana Whipped Toppings Bar and a Golden Nuggets deal menu.
“I am actually trying to go more plant-based. I’ve been doing the vegetable sandwiches, but I wanted to come out and see what plant-based meat tastes like,” said Robin Davis, one of the first in line to try Hip City Veg Dupont. “For a free sample, I thought I could give it a try.”
Marquis further tempted new customers by offering pedicabs for those returning to Dupont Circle offices to to the nearby park to enjoy their Hip City Veg food as a picnic.
Passionate about bringing plant-based food to people everywhere “for our health and also for the environment and to see what positive impact we can make,” she explained to K Street Magazine why the mission is a personal one for her:
“It transformed my Father’s health,” she said. “He was in his 50s, overweight, and had just been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes, so I made him a green smoothie, the same one we sell today — our BFG — with organic spinach and organic fruit. He ate it and was like ‘Oh, it tastes good!’ And that’s the key to unlocking the door to plant-based eating… just making it taste good and familiar. Within two months of adopting a plant-based diet, he eliminated four mediations, lost 25 pounds, and put his Type 2 diabetes into remission for some time.”
Those curious about Hip City Veg’s offerings can head to the new location for giveaways and samples throughout opening weekend.