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If you’re from Texas, chances are you’re homesick for kolaches. These Czech pastries made of pillowy dough with sweet or savory fillings can be found throughout the Lone Star State. But good luck finding them around here … until now. Texas natives Chris Svetlik and Brian Stanford are in the process of launching Republic Kolache Co. in D.C.
Svetlik, who works in design, comes from a Czech family and grew up making kolaches. Although they both come from the Houston area, he and Stanford, a lawyer for NASA, met in D.C. through mutual friends. “At parties, we would wax nostalgic about Texas stuff, kolaches being one of them,” Svetlik says. “Eventually, we said, ‘Let’s stop talking about it and actually do it.”
The duo is looking to launch within the next two months through pop-ups or at farmers’ markets. (Stay tuned for specifics.) Their long-term plans are still open-ended: “We’ll see down the road if it ends up being something brick-and-mortar,” Svetlik says.
Among the sweet fillings you will find from Republic Kolache Co.: blueberry and cream cheese, spiced apple, and poppy seed with candied lemon peel. Savory varieties will include chopped brisket with caramelized Vidalia onion; bacon, egg, and cheese; and fried country ham with jalapeño jelly and white cheddar. For a D.C. spin, there will also be a half-smoke kolache with grilled jalapeno and cheddar.
“We have a pretty firm idea that there will be demand for this,” Svetlik says. “Anyone from Texas misses them.”
Photos courtesy Republic Kolache Co.