If you’re a coffee lover like me and aren’t into paying top dollar for a mediocre cup of coffee, check out Colada Shop in Sterling, a hip little Cuban café/bar nestled in the Cascades Overlook that serves coffee, beer, wine, cocktails, sandwiches, and snacks.
Colada offers a variety of robust coffee concoctions that are a flavorful step up from the typical chain coffee shop offerings. My go-to brew is the Café con Leche, a shot of espresso with steamed milk and whipped sugar, a perfect fit for my taste buds. If you want something more high octane, knock back the Café Cubano, a sweetened coffee “shooter.” All of Colada’s coffees can be prepared hot or cold, including several options for customizing.
The menu features a few sandwiches, including the classic Cuban, but what keeps me coming back are the empanadas. The Picadillo (beef), chicken, and spinach and cheese empanadas are equally delicious, the shells light and crispy with no hint of greasiness. These small pockets pack amazing flavor and are $2.75 each or three for $7. For a sweet tooth, try the guava or sweet cream cheese Pastelitos, $2.25 each or three for $5.50.
If you're more of a happy hour type, Colada has got you covered with their Colada Hour from 4-7 p.m. daily. You can soak up the Cuban vibe inside or on one of two outside patios (one is covered and heated) and enjoy $5 cocktails (including the Original Cuba Libre), house wine, and beer, and those crave-worthy empanadas for $1.50 each.
21430 Epicerie Plaza, Sterling
1405 T St. NW, Washington, DC