‘Philanthropub’ ≠ Unicorn

by Network for Good Specialist ‎11-13-2012 3:00 AM, EST

By Allison McGuire


The term ‘philanthropub’ sounds too good to be true. Beer for a good cause? Color me intrigued. I’d heard of pop-up shops selling chocolate for good deeds and other ‘do good’ food-related business models, but they weren’t located anywhere close to DC. When I read about new ‘philanthropub’ Cause opening in the District, I had to learn more.


Cause DC - lights.jpgFood. Drinks. Cause. Through the power of social networks, I was able to connect with Cause’s co-founder, organizational psychologist by trade, and former Peace Corps volunteer Nick Vilelle. Nick gave me the scoop on their business plan, described how the menu was devised, and provided juicy tidbits on their digs.


Cause DC - location.jpg



It’s worth noting that Cause isn’t some hole-in-the-wall, ‘tree hugging’ kind of place. If I were walking down U Street (a hip area in DC) on a Saturday night, I would never know this bar/restaurant had a do-good mission…although the name might give them away. Cause has a fabulous space, delicious food (with loads of vegetarian options!), and fun, creative drinks.





Here’s the skinny:


  • Cause gives 100% of its profits to charity.
  • Featured nonprofits rotate per quarter.
  • Customers determine which charity they’d like to support.
  • Sustainability and inspiration is woven throughout the entire business.


Read on to find out how Cause does 'good' business. Also, you should sign up for our quick tips on cause marketing!


All photos author's own.


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Companies for Good shares insights on cause marketing and corporate social responsibility topics to inform your charitable engagement with consumers and employees. Network for Good empowers corporate partners to unleash generosity and advance good causes. The blog celebrates that work and provides expertise and resources to help you do well and do good. Learn more

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