I'm looking for a bakery that stocks some kind of appetizer-sized puffs or popovers or any other cocktail party-sized bread product in lieu of making my own. Any suggestions, either in general or for a specific item at a specific bakery? Bonus if they also have good baguettes.
And the closer to downtown DC the better.
I would call Randolph in Arlington. I know they have a good baguette, they might have the other items you are looking for. Heidelberg bakery has pretzell rolls and other rolls, they might be worth a call in Randolph fails.
Can you think of an example you've had somewhere else? Seems to me a problem with freshness / delay in getting them to your party.
Anyway, call Rita's on Georgia Avenue. Not a bakery. They make polori which are Trini fritters from chickpea flour. They also have a really wicked pickled tamarind sauce you can buy separately. One of the top things you can eat in DC and darn cheap. The whole point to the fritter is to dip it in a sauce, so if you don't get their sauce you should substitute another sauce, maybe buy a jar or two of chimmichurri sauce or peanut or jerk sauce. Almost anything will work, but their sauce is fantastic.
Try Patisserie Poupon, the one on Wisconsin Ave. Pretty sure they sell party hors d'oeuvres. Also Leopold's Cafe has the best little tea sandwhiches, not sure if they cater but worth a try.
1645 Wisconsin Ave NW, Washington, DC