Friday, July 15, 2011

The Highlands, DC

Recently, I purchased a Groupon for a restaurant called, "The Highlands," for their new vegan dinners on Friday and Saturday nights.  I was surprised to see a Groupon for vegan food at a restaurant I had never heard of and was curious to see what they'd be serving. Their website appears to be updated each Friday with their vegan menu for the weekend. We went on the Saturday before July 4th so that weekend it was a cookout-inspired menu.

Caution: this restaurant isn't in the nicest of areas. It is located north up 14th Street past Mount Pleasant so I would recommend not going too late. The restaurant looked pretty run down from the outside, but was your typical divey-type dining room on the inside.  I was disappointed to find that there was only one vegan option this weekend when on prior weekends there had been several options.  This option in particular was a cookout basket that was priced at $13, which seemed really high for this kind of place.

The woman asked me if I was eating in or taking out before I ordered, then she asked me again when I ordered, then once we sat down, the server asked me again. You'd think they might just make note of this. It was 100 degrees outside and there wasn't any A/C inside so it was unbearably hot. The fans they had setup were just blowing hot air around the dining area.

They brought my meal out in a basket, which consisted of coleslaw, baked beans, ruffled potato chips and a portobello sandwich. The portobello sandwich was called a "vurger," which I thought meant vegan burger, so I was expecting a veggie burger. Not so. This was a small portobello mushroom on a bun with lettuce, tomato, and pickle with some sort of vegan mayonnaise and yellow mustard. It was not good.

First of all, one of the options was to add cheese for $1 more. When I tried to order the cheese, they told me someone threw the vegan cheese out by mistake. Well, I was so glad they didn't have it. Why would anyone put vegan cheese on a portobello sandwich?  My next question is...Why would anyone put yellow mustard on this sandwich?  And a pickle? This was the epitomy of terrible sandwiches.

To top it off, it was served with canned baked beans and cheap ruffled potato chips. All, for $13?! I could have made this at home for half that and it would have been 10 times better. I appreciate that this restaurant is offering vegan options, but I would not recommend that you go out of your way to go here. The food is over-priced and not good at all.

The Highlands
4706 14th St. NW
Washington, DC 20011
(202) 829-6200

 Highlands Cafe & Grill on Urbanspoon


  1. Ugh! I'm going tomorrow with a friend since the Groupon experiences then. I'll prep my friend to lower her expectations before going through the door. Thanks for the warning!

  2. Ryan - let me know what you think. The menu is different every weekend. Maybe you'll get lucky!