We are beyond pumped to tell you guys about Chill Zone because this cafe’s seriously THE best ever. Located on 2442 N. Harrison St, this place is an absolute must. It’s fairly unassuming from the outside, but once you walk in, it’s a done deal – in fact, we don’t think it’d be a stretch to call it instagram heaven. Daniel (the owner) designed everything with SO much care, and it really shows. There were 4 different seating “sections” in the cafe:
- The “lounge” by the window: this was our fave space. It was asian-inspired and had a big table with tons of pillows and a giant stuffed bear. Shoes weren’t allowed since the area was carpeted, and it had a very home-y vibe to it which we liked.
- Two tables in front of the lounge: 4 chairs at each table + a gorgeous photography display of the owner’s work – in addition to owning/managing this cafe, Daniel’s a well-respected wedding photographer in the DMV area.
- The stools along the side: when you walk into the cafe, you’ll spot several of these babies by the window on the right.
- More tablessss (and yes, we needed all those s’s): located right next to the stools (in the middle of the cafe), there were two tables with comfy chairs + mini-stools.
We grabbed a table and took a look at their menu (pictured above). Well, part 1 of their menu at least. They had another one with drinks above the cash register, but we didn’t get a shot of that sooooo this will suffice. As you can see, they only offer a handful of plates, BUT they’re done SO well that you won’t complain. We tried both of their banh mis (chicken & beef), their chill-zone wings, and their coco banana cake. On the drink front, we got a Vietnamese coffee, a volcano mango bubble tea, and a matcha milk tea.
We honestly don’t know where to start because they did such an amazing job with everything. The drink above was the Vietnamese coffee, and it was seriously THE best one we’ve ever had in the DMV area. It wasn’t too sweet (many places overload on sugar) or too strong – the balance was on point, and we’d get this every day if we could. The banh mis pictured below were both delicious. If you’re a fan of Vietnamese sandwiches, definitely get an order for lunch or for a study/work break. The bread’s perfectly toasted, and the pickled veggies add a great crunch!
above: livin’ that banh mi life at Chill Zone || below: matcha milk madness…we have a thing for alliteration…
Next up, their matcha milk tea and their wings. Anddddd, we’re totally gonna sound like broken records, but their matcha milk tea was the BEST we’ve had. Not just in the DMV though – we’re talking best ever. We know that’s high praise for Chill Zone, but y’all will understand once you go and try for yourself. It was made with high quality matcha, and the mini boba was interesting. It was our first time trying tear-shaped bobas (or boba? or bobi? w/e, ha), but we were into it. The texture was different but enjoyable. The wings (pictured below) were also really delicious – crispy and seasoned to perfection.
Then came their coco banana cake dessert. This came out warm and was quite yummy. It had a beautiful texture to it (soft and moist) and wasn’t TOO sweet. In fact, it almost didn’t taste like dessert, but we don’t mean that in a bad way. It just depends on what you’re in the mood for. Out of the three food dishes mentioned above, this was our least favorite, but that doesn’t mean much because we genuinely enjoyed everything we got. We recommend getting an order and splitting it with friends because it’s definitely worth trying because we found it to be unique. Let us know what you think by leaving us a comment below!
above: we did it for the coco [banana cake] || below: we flat lay like it’s our job
All that’s left to cover? Chill Zone’s volcano mango bubble tea. Holy freaking crap, Nomsters – this was straight up obscene. If you’re into mangos, you HAVE to get this. IT’S SO RIDICULOUSLY GOOD THAT IT’S STUPID. See the chunks of mango pictured below? It’s the mango-iest – not sure if that’s a word, but we don’t care – we’ve ever had, and each sip was heavenly goodness. Unlike the matcha drink above, this had full-sized clear boba bubbles. They weren’t tapioca bubbles though – they had liquid in them, and we had so much fun popping them in our mouths. Also, see that “straw” pictured below? That’s no straw – it’s CANDY so you can eat it during or after. Yay for fancy schmancy garnishes!
So, why is Chill Zone our new favorite cafe in the DMV? The interior was beautiful (and super clean). The food and drinks were second to none – seriously, if you’re looking for good boba or Vietnamese coffee, you must come here. The service was impeccable – Daniel and his team were so welcoming and helpful. The prices were totally reasonable, and it was just a great place to, well, chill. For those of you interested, there’s ample parking in the back so you don’t have to worry about finding a spot. Happy exploring, friends! To browse other fabulous restaurants and cafes in Virginia, click here.