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A trio of sugary beignets. [Photograph: Brian Oh]

Remember that time you were in New Orleans and had beignets at CafĂ© du Monde? Remember how you bit into that pillowy, fried cloud of dough—your clothes covered in the same confectioner's sugar as the beignets—closed your eyes and thought, "Yes, this is New Orleans"? Well, now you're back in D.C. and you sometimes find yourself aching for that moment under the green and white striped canopy so acutely you can even hear the jazz in your head. Well, whether you've had that memory or not, you can relive (or have for the first time) that experience at Bayou Bakery.

Bayou Bakery is a New Orleans style cafe in Arlington that specializes in coffee, breakfast biscuits, and, most importantly, beignets. There are charming design touches that evoke thoughts of New Orleans, like multicolored clapboards above the kitchen counter and a coffee tables made to look like old train cars. Ask for an order of beignets ($3) and you'll get a plate of three, freshly fried and covered in sugar. You're going to make a mess, but that's unavoidable and expected. Don't bother with utensils. Pick one up, take a bite, sip your coffee, and you may as well be back in the French Quarter.

Bayou Bakery
1515 North Courthouse Road, Arlington, VA 22201 (map);703-243-2410; www.bayoubakeryva.com
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