Native Highlight: How @thecarboholic turned her passion for carbs into a top DC Instagram account

Native Highlight: @thecarboholic


Rachel Brotman, the owner of the account The Carboholic (@thecarboholic), has what some would call a food obsession - we call it more of an intense passion for food. Although she finds herself all over the world, she always credits DC in breeding her passion for food, and more specifically... carbs! 

Check out a behind the scenes look at an Instagram food blogger and find out Rachel's favorite spots around DC!

The Inspiration Behind The Account

Simply put, I have always had a love for photography and a love for food! I used to post an overwhelming amount of food pictures on my personal Instagram account, which many of my friends told me was annoying! I would hear, “you post too many pictures of food! We want to see your face, not what you eat!”. But I had so many good food pictures to share! How could I keep them to myself? Especially when I spent hours actually making those yummy treats myself!

A trend we are seeing with our Natives is that their foodie accounts started from trying to share their passions while fighting off the complaints from their friends about the influx of food pictures. You gotta love her friends blatantly telling her that they were annoyed!

Using her friends complaints as motivation, she was able to mesh her love for food and photography into a product of incredible food photos of meals you have to try out. 

Along for the ride

The timeline of @thecarboholic is a complex one, so we throught we'd put together a timeline to help you navigate through Rachel's experiences!

In the spring of 2016, I studied abroad in Sydney, Australia. Everything there was beautiful. The food was so ornate and the desserts (*cough cough* @tellaballsdessertbar) were out of control. That was it! I had to make a separate account for my food pictures so that I could post all of them!


Rachel attributes the turning point to her trip over to Australia. She fell in love with the food - especially the dessert. She found herself sharing tons of food pictures to the point that she knew a separate account was needed.

MARCH 2016

The account @bitesofsydney was born, but the semester didn't last forever.


She was back exploring DC after a short stint in Australia. DC was where she was most comfortable, being one of the first to hear about new restaurants or where the food scene was trending. This was when @bitesofDC burst onto the scene. 


She was gaining a following very rapidly and was becoming a go-to source for where to go in DC. She was focused on creating value for the DC foodie community, but she wanted to attract people that shared the same passions as her, not just people looking for awesome photos of DC food.

That was where @thecarboholic was born. That name fits her perfectly for her love of desserts and anything that contains carbs. Understandably, she didn't have a hard time attracting a community of like-minded "Carboholics"!

What got you so hooked on the DC Food Scene?

Her three favorite hobbies are baking, eating, and trying new restaurants. She loves how rapidly the DC food scene is growing because that means more places for her to try out! When we asked about the DC food scene, she rattled off tons of places she loves and meals to try.

Since 2010 some of my favorite D.C. spots have emerged, such as The Red Hen, Duke’s Grocery and The Partisan. However, there are still many D.C. staples that are not to be missed, such as Filomena and Café Milano. And hey, if you want to sit in the very same table in the very same restaurant in which John F. Kennedy proposed to Jackie, you can at Martin’s Tavern!

She also loves the history behind some of her favorite spots like Martin's Tavern!

How does she have time?

I am currently in graduate school earning a Masters Degree in Elementary Education. As I am completing my degree, I am student teaching in a second grade classroom.

So let's get this straight, she's running @thecarboholic, keeping up to date on the new spots opening up, student teaching, AND she's getting her Masters? When does she find time to sleep? 

We are definitely not complaining though - as long as she continues to find amazing desserts and top restaurants!



Why you need to follow @thecarboholic right now

I post delectable sweets, burgers and cheesy greasy delights. All photographs are taken by me and have been taken with thought. I give my honest opinions. I share my recipes with my followers. I do product discounts and event giveaways every so often.

Like we mentioned before, she is the perfect person to follow if you are a fan of the comfort foods, especially if you are looking for amazing desserts. Rachel is a natural at sniffing out the top desserts in the DC area (and beyond).

The Top Spots For @thecarboholic

1) Duke's Grocery

6230, 1513 17th St NW, Washington, DC 20036


Pro Tip: 

It's casual, authentic and home to the best burger I've ever eaten. The eclectic menu contains a variety of seasonal sandwiches and snacks, all of which will leave you dreaming. This downtown joint deals in fried chicken and ramen. But the best thing on the menu, in my opinion, is the gyoza, a dish of delicate steamed chicken dumplings sitting in a pool of hot chili oil.


2) Osteria Morini

301 Water St SE, Washington, DC 20003


A post shared by The Carboholic (@thecarboholic) on


Pro Tip:

If you're a sucker for homemade pasta like I am, you have to try the Cappelletti! It is a truffled ricotta ravioli with melted butter and prosciutto.


3) The Partisan

709 D St NW, Washington, DC 20004


A post shared by The Partisan (@thepartisandc) on


Pro Tip 

If you like charcuterie and meat-centric dishes, this one is for you! You'd be a fool not to try the Triple Stack Burger and Beef Fat Fries!


4) The Red Hen

1822 1st St NW, Washington, DC 20001


Pro Tip

The Red Hen is a cosy, casual Italian-influenced American restaurant in the Bloomingdale neighborhood. It is a definite go-to, but be sure to make a reservation in advance. The Mezzi Rigatoni with fennel sausage ragu is a must!

Be sure to follow @thecarboholic on Instagram and download NativX to get more awesome tips from Natives!


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