King for a day: Bakery Nouveau's glitzy New Orleans-style cake is fit for a royal. Bakery Nouveau via Instagram
Often adorned with colorful tinted sugars and Mardi Gras beads, king cake (or its French counterpart, galette des rois) is a classic tradition marking the period of indulgence that comes before Lent. If you're the lucky guest who gets a slice embedded with a symbolic trinket, you're crowned royalty for a day. (The catch? You're tasked with hosting the party the following year.) If you'd like to seek out the festive pastry, we've compiled the places in town serving it below. For more ideas, check out our list of food and drink specials to try in February, our Mardi Gras calendar, and our food and drink calendar.

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Note: Availability may vary—call ahead to check!

Amandine Bakeshop
Sara Naftaly’s French bakery on Capitol Hill offers a New Orleans-style king cake drizzled with purple and green icing and decked out with almonds and powdered sugar.
Capitol Hill

Bakery Nouveau
The venerable bakeshop's crowd-favorite king cake, made with laminated brioche dough and rolled with apple and raisins, is festooned with gold and purple sugar and is now available by the slice or whole cake (the whole ones have beads!). Both offerings are available through Tuesday, February 25. They're known for selling out quickly, so get there early. Pre-orders are also welcomed—you can call the shop of your choice at least 48 hours in advance to reserve baked goods for pick-up. Beginning on Tuesday, February 11, they'll also fry up pillowy paçzki (Polish doughnuts traditionally served for Mardi Gras) filled with chocolate, vanilla bean, raspberry, lemon, strawberries and cream, and caramel apple at all three of their locations.
Various locations

Le Panier
The French patisserie’s galette des rois, which comes equipped with a regal gold crown for one fortunate guest to wear, can be requested through special order until Tuesday, February 25.
Downtown

Petit Pierre Bakery
Magnolia's French bakeshop/cafe will make classic New Orleans-style king cake with cinnamon brioche topped with sugar and containing a hidden baby Jesus figurine, available for pre-order upon request.
Magnolia

Sugar Bakery
The local bakery makes king cake with brioche dough and a choice of bourbon pecan or vanilla cream cheese filling, draped with some festive beads. They're available for pre-order as a whole cake through Tuesday, February 25 and by the slice on Thursdays and Fridays from February 14 until February 25.
Various locations