The Latest Dish: Chef Ris Lacoste Honored

Chef Ris Lacoste Wins Duke Zeibert Capital Achievement Award

On June 5, the Restaurant Association Metropolitan Washington (RAMW) and industry peers, friends and family, celebrated Ris Lacoste of Ris, as the 2023 recipient of the Duke Zeibert Capital Achievement Award. “One of the most respected and dedicated chefs in the region, Ris Lacoste has earned a reputation built on genuine hospitality, mentoring the next generation of industry workers, and a true love for her team members and the guests she serves. Diners adore her use of high-quality ingredients, bold innovative techniques, and food that is both familiar and delicious,” Lacoste’s tribute stated.

On June 5, RAMW and industry peers, friends and family, celebrated Ris Lacoste, as the 2023 recipient of the Duke Zeibert Capital Achievement Award.

The award was presented by RAMW President and CEO, Shawn Townsend at her eponymous restaurant, Ris. The evening’s emcee was Symone Sanders-Townsend. Tributes came from Gavin Coleman, Mike Curtin, Michelle Jaconi, Kathy Hollinger, and Ward 2 Council member Brooke Pinto, with a toast led by Tracy O’Grady. Symone read a letter of congratulations from Hillary Rodham Clinton, who dined at Ris often with her mother.

Named in honor of legendary Washington restaurateur Duke Zeibert, the award recognizes an individual whose hard work and outstanding initiative has increased the profile and success of the metropolitan Washington foodservice community and dining landscape.

Latest Dish

High-end Persian restaurant Joon is opening at Tysons in mid-June. Photo by Rey Lopez. Courtesy Joon.

Joon, a high-end Persian restaurant, opens in mid-June at Fairfax Square (aka Rodeo Drive) in Tysons at (8045 Leesburg Pike) where Chef Geoff’s used to be. Brought to you by Reza Farahani, the authentic cuisine at this high-end Persian restaurant has been created and crafted by renowned Persian cookbook author and chef, Najmieh Batmanglij, who is teamed with Michelin-starred chef, Chris Morgan, previously at Maydan. Said Haddad is the general manager. 

The Bar Chinois team, including Dean Mosones, Mark Minicucci, and Margaux Donati, plan to open a new izakaya restaurant, Bar Japonais at 1520 14th Street NW, where Estadio used to be, in Q1 2024. Similar to its sister restaurant, Bar Japonais will seamlessly blend French and Japanese flavors with an energetic experience. 

Erik Bergman has been named Director of Restaurants and Bars at The Watermark Hotel in Tysons, leading operations for its food and beverage venues: Japanese dining destination, Wren, Perch Putt’s retro bar, breakfast spot, the Aviary as well as the hotel’s banquet and catering operations. 

Quick Hits: Ethiopian restaurant, Tsehay, is slated to open in mid- June, where La Fourchette used to be at 2429 18th Street, NW in Adams Morgan… Chef Kwame Onwuachi, formerly of Kith/Kin in DC at The Wharf, plans to open a new restaurant at the nearby Salamander Washington DC (formerly Mandarin Oriental) in SW DC…. Saxby’s near Georgetown University at 3500 O Street, NW is now Coffee Republic … Indian egg-themed restaurant Eggholic is slated to open near 20th & M Street NW in the West End near Dupont Circle. 

Clyde’s Restaurant Group plans to open Rye Street Tavern, at 13 Rye Street, at the Peninsula development project in Baltimore’s Port Covington neighborhood, in Q1 2024. It’s next to the Sagamore Spirit Distillery (hence, “rye”). The original Rye Street Tavern, opened just 3 years, closed during the pandemic. It will be a classic Clyde’s operation: big (12,000-sq ft), oyster bar, multiple indoor & outdoor bars, PDR’s, and a décor theme that pays tribute to Baltimore’s history. This new restaurant will join its 12 other Clyde’s operations. 


Linda Roth is Founder & CEO of Linda Roth Associates (LRA), a D.C.-based public relations & marketing firm that specializes in the foodservice and hospitality industries. Follow her at: @LindaRothPR, #LindaRothPR, or    




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