Union Kitchen in the News

best of dc

Whisked was named Best Bakery by The Washington Post’s Best of 2014

TaKorean was named Best Food Truck by The Washington Post’s Best of 2014

Banana Love Muffins received a loud and proud shout-out by DC’s 107.3 and is featured in their #letusYelpya Campaign. Listen to the shout-out here (hint listen at the 17min mark).

RareSweets spiced pumpkin cake is named dish of the week by The Washington Post.

DC Homebrewers Club Barbecue and Fundraiser on October 18th proceeds went to  Common Good City Farm in Ledroit Park.

Dog Tag Bakery receives USA TODAY accolades.

Mission:Bars is a local DC startup dedicated to making athlete fuel that is natural, and they are causing a big stir in DC.  Mission:Bars makes bars for athletics (and life) with only all natural ingredients. Mission:Bars also provide free fitness events like weekly yoga classes or run events, and they partner with local fitness and yoga studios all over the city.  The goal is to develop local communities; help people fuel natural and clean; get people MOVING; and make DC a healthier place to live.

How We Got Here

For the next seven days, we will be completing our Kickstarter funding campaign; but flash back seven months ago, back to when we firstwalked into Union Kitchen with just a concept of a product and a drive to make it happen: fuel athletes with natural ingredients. We walked in with limited knowledge of business, packaging, sourcing, distribution, financing, etc.–but we walked in with this vision and drive.
Now back up even further, two years before we even knew what Union Kitchen was, to a time when Kathleen and Danny were in Wegmans Grocer in Ithaca, NY. Danny was an engineer training for Ironman and Kathleen was a nutrition/hospitality student training for a the one and only Ithaca Skunk Cabbage Half Marathon. We were walking down the nutrition bar isle to stock up for the week of training, studying, and surviving the Ithaca winter. Being a nutrition nut, Kathleen would read each label examining each and every ingredient and fuel source. And Danny, being from Portland, OR, wanted the wrapper to be compostable and the ingredients to be sourced local. We started to realize that there was no product that was both simplistic in ingredients and designed for active lifestyles.

What Our Product Is

What we wanted was a bar that was designed for:

1) Athletics. We wanted performance.  It had to keep us full, sustain a run, help us recover.  But it should NOT have anything that we could not pronounce in it.  We did not want Powerbar, Promax, protein isolates, any ingredients they were unable to pronounce, or even added sugars; the products branded for “athletes” and “performance” fell entirely into this category.

2) Natural. We wanted simple, real food!  We found simplistic bars founded on using simple ingredients that provide a healthy snack. Again, we were disappointed by the market offerings–most “simple” bars are either loaded with added sugar or were not designed for a long bike ride, long run, or any of the activities that we loved and wanted to fuel.

We set out to create our own product by combining these two trains of thought into one product. Natural and simple, athletic and performance driven. Kathleen began experimenting with ingredients she had never seen before in bars, like quinoa and chia seeds. She blended quinoa, the highest protein grain, with amino acid superfood chia seeds and added to a base of almond butter, dates and bananas. Months of R&D–aka, a lot of long runs, miles of cycling, swims, yoga classes, races and hundreds of bars consumed– lead to what ultimately became MISSION:bars. MISSION:bars is a naturally driven athletic bar with ingredients that our consumers can pronounce (with maybe the exception of keen-wah). 

Moving Our Community

MISSION:Bars does not stop there; our mission is to get people moving.  We aim to provide affordable fitness to the cities nationwide and help people access fitness, movement, and a healthier lifestyle in all aspects of their life. Kathleen has developed MISSION:yoga, a free yoga practice throughout DC that attracts hundreds (follow the twitter or newsletter to get updates on our next class). Danny leads November Project DC, a free fitness M/W/F class that has over 400 people getting out of bed to build a community around fitness. We are also hostingMission:MOTION, a night of running, yoga, community, and fun to get people in motion and engage the community with local businesses including ourselves, Jrink, and Epic yoga. The two believe that community, movement, and a natural lifestyle foster a healthy life.

The MISSION:bars vision is to fuel the natural athletic movement. And now that movement needs fueling.  MISSION:bars is in now in the process of a Kickstarter with aims of revamping its packaging and extending our shelf life by months which will enable us to provide our product to stores nationwide. Fuel MISSION on Kickstarter and we will fuel you for your life in motion. #JoinTheMission

The Vision

Fast forward 5 years: you can go on missionbars.com to find a free yoga class in your city or find a free group run in Chicago; you will see that our ingredients have not changed, and that we have fueled thousands of people to achieve better, healthier lives.

Now: press play and watch us grow this movement.


Written by Guest Bloggers of Mission Bar

UnionKitchen_PosterPrint10_3 (835x1280)The Bird is the Word no longer! Move over Bird there is a new sound in town and it’s at The Lot @ Atlantic Plumbing on Saturday, October 18th from 5pm to 10pm. The SEASON FINALE is co-hosted by Church Night and Union Kitchen.

The show is FREE and for ALL ages, so feel free to bring your young ones, and your ID in case you decide to drink while on parenting duty. Alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages will be available for purchase from Union Kitchen Catering and DC Brau. Food will be available from some wonderfully delightful Union Kitchen Members: Haute Saison CateringCafe DiemTimber Pizza CoB.Lin CateringSwizzler.

Plus to add to the rhythm of the night there is FREE LIVE MUSIC starting with HOWARD HAPPY HOUR in honor of Howard University Homecoming, with music by DJ Grey Goon from 5pm to 7pm. The music showcase kicks off at 7pm, starting with Title Tracks, then The Sea Life, finishing with Stronger Sex (Single Release).

This is the Season Finale of the shows on The Lot @ Atlantic Plumbing. As such, we hope you will join us to say farewell to another season well spent, and say hello to a new (colder and less sunny) season. So whip out your favorite sweaters and sip on some hot toddys. The Finale is graciously sponsored by DCDITD/CITYDCist, and DC Brau.

Read more information on Eventbrite, and Facebook.

Eventbrite - The Lot Season Finale with Church Night

Dog Tag Bakery


Dog Tag Bakery is an entrepreneurial venture that provides education and employment to wounded veterans and their spouses. They are set to open doors in Georgetown to a brick-and-mortar bakery which will “provide a retail location for the bakery and café, housing a production/baking area, a training-and-meeting room, and an office space from which to manage the business.”

The bakery will be searching for stewards, bakers, and baristas who are interested in a fun, rewarding part/full-time job. Check out employment opportunities here: http://dogtagbakerycareers.companycareersite.com/

All proceeds from the bakery support Dog Tag Inc, a 501(c)(3) non-profit that provides training and employment to veterans with disabilities and spouses  Founded by Fr. Rick Curry, SJ and Connie Milstein, the Dog Tag Inc. model joins world-class business education with training opportunities in the social enterprises we create. Over the course of six months, fellows earn a Certificate in Business Administration from Georgetown University’s School of Continuing Studies while gaining hands on experience operating a business. Dog Tag Bakery is the first business created by Dog Tag Inc. Fellows are employed by the organization and apply what they learn in the classroom at our storefront in Georgetown.