Authentic Cuban restaurant “Colada Shop” impresses in Potomac


Photo by Eitan Malkus

Cabin John Village welcomes a delicious Cuban restaurant.

Eitan Malkus, Arts and Entertainment Editor

With everything from smoothies to snacks to entrees, Colada Shop is the perfect place to grab a quick bite to eat. The Cuban-inspired cafe has three locations including two in D.C. and a newly opened one at Cabin John Village in Potomac which I visited. 

The cafe offers a glimpse at an authentic Cuban meal, with options including empanadas and pina coladas. The space is decorated with vibrant hues of blue and yellow and lush greenery circling the dining room. 

There is a counter at the front to order when you walk in, with choices to sit down at the distanced tables inside and out and to carry out your order once it is ready. We chose to sit outside on the beautiful patio, perfect for a warm spring day. 

The menu was a highlight for me. however, with so many options, it was hard to choose what to get. My party decided on the spinach and cheese empanadas, an avocado tostada, and a veggie Cuban sandwich. For drinks, we ordered a pina colada slushie and a Havana cold brew coffee. 

Colada Shop also has all-day breakfast options that are perfect for a quick bite at any time throughout the day. Our order did take a bit of time to prepare but once it was ready a server came right to our table to deliver the food. 

I enjoyed all of the food, especially since Cuban cuisine is hard to come by in this area. The empanadas were my favorite dish overall, with a savory enough taste and a crunchy dough shell on the outside. 

The iced coffee is perfect for such a warm day and even if you don’t feel like picking up an entire meal, just going for coffee is worth it. The pina colada was served in a plastic bag which was an interesting choice, but the drink was amazing, ranking as one of my favorite smoothies I’ve ever had. 

While the food was great, one large downside is the price. The drinks ranged from $3 to $5, while the dishes were all more than $10. However, the dishes are very much worth the price point, and I would still strongly recommend coming regardless. 

The experience was excellent, and I will be back soon to try more of the dishes the cafe offers. Even if you don’t live near Potomac, the other locations in D.C. are very similar and essentially have the same atmosphere and cuisine. I would hope at some point to eat inside with the nice decor, but the outdoor patio set a tone for the meal, which was delicious.