Le Diplomate’s Stephen Starr Wants to Bring His Food Magic to Former Dean & Deluca Spot

It looks like a star — oh, make that Starr — restaurant will be coming to Georgetown, and it’s kind of a big deal.

Stephen Starr, the restaurateur behind the popular French restaurant Le Diplomate on 14th Street will be opening an Italian eatery and market in the former Dean & DeLuca space on 3276 M St. NW. Starr operates Starr Restaurants, a multi-concept and independent restaurant group that includes more than 30 eateries.

Starr shared the news at the Georgetown-Burleith Advisory Neighborhood Commission’s June 1 online meeting. He’s working on getting California-based star chef and baker Nancy Silverton of Osteria Mozza and Pizzeria Mozza, both in Los Angeles. The group has designs for a “mega Italian concept” with lots of pastas and pizzas and a hearth in the middle for baking —”not super expensive,” he said

The market portion will be 1,000-square-foot Italian market with gelato and espresso, breads, baked goods, fresh veggies and more. Eventually, there may be a wine cellar in the basement.

“Just calling it an Italian restaurant, I don’t think is doing it justice. It’s going to be an event. It’s going to be a festival of food,” Starr told the commissioners and added, “Georgetown I think needs a little bit of a boost, and I think this could be a good little kickstarter.”

“I think it’s great for the neighborhood,” said commissioner Lisa Palmer, whose district includes the Italian eatery. “It’s a signal to other restaurateurs.”

The Georgetown Market building is historic and owned by the District government. Its landlord is Jamestown Properties which also owns Georgetown Park, next to the property. There will be no alterations to the exterior. Approvals still need to be nailed down. Neither opening date nor the name of the restaurant was announced.

It was a happy happenstance that President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris and their spouses were spotted at Starr’s Le Diplomate on Memorial Day after attending a ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery.


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