Car Wash Coffee Aiming To Be Community Gathering Spot

New Kensington coffee shop opened Aug. 4

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By Glynis Kazanjian

The owners of a new Kensington coffee shop with an unusual name are hoping that it will become a community gathering place.

Car Wash Coffee opened Aug. 4 in the Connecticut Avenue location where Savannah’s American Grill was located. The café is owned by the family that operate the adjacent Mr. Wash.

“We want it to be a community gathering spot, not have a chain-like atmosphere,” said Steve Harris, a second-generation owner of Mr. Wash, which has six locations in the Washington area. “We’ve been in business for 60 years. We’re not gonna mess something up and do something that’s not nice.”

Maddie Harris, who co-owns the coffee shop, designed the interior with lounge-like seating areas and a large community table. Along with coffee, Car Wash Coffee offers a variety of light breakfast and lunch items, including breakfast sandwiches, chicken and tuna salad, and yogurt and fruit parfaits. The restaurant’s website is still under construction.

“Bagels and pastries are delivered daily, and sandwiches are freshly made,” Maddie Harris said.

Steve Harris, co-owner of Car Wash Coffee, pours a nitro coffee. Credit: Glynis Kazanjian.

Car Wash Coffee also features an Acai berry frozen drink and nitro coffee, a new trend of cold-brewed coffee that is served from the tap like draft beer.

Jennifer Kluge, 42, has visited the new coffee shop three times since it opened.

“It’s something this area needed in terms of another gathering place,” said Kluge Thursday morning while having breakfast with her husband. “It is nice to see the improvement of the site.”

“It’s a much nicer place,” John Kluge said. “Kensington is really underserved. “We have to go to Silver Spring or Bethesda for anything, really.”

Car Wash Coffee is open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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