Chef/GM/Mixologist Update: **Trummer’s On Main** in Clifton, Virginia, named Jon Cropf as the restaurant’s new executive chef. He hails from **The Drawing Room** in...
Chef/GM/Mixologist Update: Trummer’s On Main in Clifton, Virginia, named Jon Cropf as the restaurant’s new executive chef. He hails from The Drawing Room in...
Michael Schlow continues to build his restaurant empire in D.C. He will open Casolare in the newly renovated Glover ...
Dick Talbot has sold Rumors Bar & Grill, his iconic landmark saloon in downtown D.C. at 19th and M Street. The new owner is Pat Morrough, who has also owned Quarterdeck Restaurant in Rosslyn, Virginia, for the past four years. Does this mean there will be a new place to get steamed crabs in downtown D.C.? Manhattan Proper, a New York-based “elevated sports bar with updated eats,” has leased the 1319 F Street space where Finemondo used to be and plans to open a D.C. version of its popular sports bar and restaurant: Proper 21. Mike and Donna Anderson, along with their business partner Bill Blackburn, have formed Homegrown Restaurant Group. They plan to open Whiskey & Oyster in the Carlyle development in Alexandria, where the U.S Patent and Trademark Office is. The 100-seat seafood restaurant will feature a raw bar and an outdoor patio with 50 seats. They also own and operate Pork Barrel BBQ, Sushi Bar, Holy Cow and Sweet Fire Donna’s. Openings Updates: Buttercream Bakeshop, by Tiffany MacIsaac and her partner Alexandra Mudry-Hill, is expected to be open before the end of May in the ever popular Shaw neighborhood at 1250 9th St. NW … Not Your Average Joe’s is slated to open in Silver Spring’s Ellsworth Place by mid-June … Chuy’s in Sterling just opened … Dave & Buster’s just opened in Capitol Heights, Maryland … Newly opened, Ashlar, is the restaurant that replaced The Grille in the newly renovated Morrison House hotel … Eric Ziebold and Celia Laurent’s restaurant, Metier, was slated to open April 26 at 1015 7th St. NW, below its sister operation, Kinship. The 36-seat restaurant offers a seven-course menu for $200, plus beverages … Hakan Ilhan’s Ottoman Taverna, a nod to his native Turkey, will have Chef Ilhan Erkek, who opened The Ritz-Carlton in Istanbul, at the helm in the kitchen. Linda Roth is president of Linda Roth Associates, a public relations and marketing firm that specializes in the hospitality industry, providing creative connections through media relations, marketing initiatives, community outreach and special events. Reach her at: Linda@LindaRothPR.com or lindarothpr.com or #LindaRothPR.
Ivy City Tavern, is for now, a 45-seat tavern, serving tavern food above Ivy City Smokehouse and retail fish market at 1356 Okie St. NE in the Ivy City neighborhood. It’s owned by Greg Casten and Ronnie Goodman. Greg is better known for his company just around the corner for the past 25 years, ProFish. It’s an emerging neighborhood, so the plan is for it to become a full-service restaurant at the right time. Its huge rooftop lends itself as an ideal spot to eat steamed crabs and drink beer on warm summer evenings. There is also an indoor private dining room adjoining the patio. It’s a seafood market and a tavern, soon to become a restaurant and a private dining venue with a potential 225-person capacity. PN Hoffman and Madison Marquette’s Southwest waterfront development, The Wharf, will also have a very large Spanish seafood restaurant called Del Mar by Fabio and Maria Trabocchi (Fiola, Fiola Mare and Casa Luca). Maria’s Spanish heritage and influence will take front and center here. The 11,500-square-foot two-level restaurant will include a significant outdoor patio space with waterside cabanas. Included is a private dining room, wine cellar and bar. Opening is targeted for the fourth quarter of 2017. Just Opened: Tim Ma and Joey Hernandez recently opened Kyirisan, serving Asian-French food at 1924 8th St. NW in Shaw. It has catchy menu categories: “in the ground,” “on the ground” and “under the water.” Michael Schlow’s Alta Strada also just opened at City Vista at 465 K St. NW under the culinary supervision of Chef Michael Zentner, who relocated from Boston. Plans call for Conosci, a crudo bar to open later in the season, along with a patio. Andrew Evans of The BBQ Joint, joins Ian and Eric Hilton to open a summer-camp themed bar in the old Maurice Electric Building at 500 Penn St. NE, an area made cool by Union Market. The casual restaurant will serve summer camp staples as well as “better” summer camp staples, such as grilled (better) cheese on bread baked at Lyon Bakery. Chef Update: Angel Franco, formerly of minibar and Maketto, is the new executive chef at Compass Rose. Dennis Fieldman will be the chef at Flavio Italian restaurant, which replaces Paper Moon at 1073 31st St. NW in Georgetown. It will continue with the same ownership. CCChanges: The Majestic will reopen in May under the direction of Chef Gaby Hakman, most recently of Miami. Alexandria Restaurant Partners is renovating and will relaunch as a new concept. Mason & Rook replaces Hotel Helix by Kimpton. Chef Jonathan Dearden, formerly of Ardeo & Bardeo, heads up the kitchen at Mason & Rook’s new restaurant, Radiator. The adjoining bar will feature craft cocktails. An April opening is planned. Kimpton is renovating the rooftop to offer cocktails and light fare, poolside. Quick Hits: Kapnos Kouzina opens in 4900 Hampden Lane in Bethesda Row in partnership with chef George Pagonis. George Kennedy, formerly of Rhino Bar in Georgetown, plans to open The Spirits of 76 in Clarendon where Taste of Morocco used to be on Washington Blvd. His partner is Patrick Doody formerly of O’Sullivan’s Irish Pub (next door). Chuy’s plans to open its fourth location in the metro area (they have locations in Fairfax, Springfield and Woodbridge), in Sterling at the beginning of May. Social Restaurant Group plans to open Bonfire this month at the two-level building at 1132 19th St. NW where Famous Luigi’s used to be. Fire appears to be a prevailing theme as their light fixtures are fire hydrants, matchstick art adorns the walls, and with fire hoses for décor. Fire inspires the menu too, with charred hangar steak and s’mores. The chef is R.L. Boyd and the pastry chef is Ellen Diekemper. Kudos: Congratulations to Jacques Haeringer and the Haeringer family on the 40th anniversary of renowned L’Auberge Chez Francois. Linda Roth is president of Linda Roth Associates, a public relations and marketing firm that specializes in the hospitality industry, providing creative connections through media relations, marketing initiatives, community outreach and special events. Reach her at: Linda@LindaRothPR.com or lindarothpr.com or #LindaRothPR.
Bar à Vin at Chez Billy Sud Bar à Vin opens this week at 1035 31st St. NW, a long-vacant space adjacent to Chez Billy Sud. Along with the original Chez Billy in Petworth, it is part of the restaurants of dance-music producer Thievery Corporation’s Eric Hilton and his younger brother Ian. The new space will feature a large and mostly French wine list and be open from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m. The Resurrection of Bangkok Joe’s Bangkok Joe’s, a Thai favorite on the waterfront for 10 years, said that it will return in March to its old location at 3000 K St. NW, where the short-lived Mama Rouge restaurant used to be. Both restaurants are owned by chef Aulie Bunyarataphan and proprietor Mel Oursinsiri, and while Mama Rouge offered an Asian/French fusion menu, Bangkok Joe’s will return to a more traditional Thai menu. Old favorites like the dumpling bar will still be on the menu, complemented by new creations. Zannchi, Real Korean Fast Casual Eunjung Kim, a business student at Georgetown University, will open Zannchi, a casual Korean eatery, at 1529 Wisconsin Ave. NW by the end of this month. The name of the restaurant means “feast” in Korean. Zannchi will specialize in bibimbap — rice bowls — and kimbap — sushi rolls that contain no raw fish. Kim will graduate from Georgetown's MBA program this spring. Pineapple and Pearls: $250, Starting April 7 The chef and owner of acclaimed Rose's Luxury restaurant at Barracks Row will open a companion place, called Pineapple and Pearls, April 7. Chef Aaron Silverman has set a single-price and special menu — it will cost $250 per person, no surprises, no gratuities, no add-ons. Next week, diners can PineappleandPearls.com to start the reservation scrabble. Silverman, the Washington Post reported, “wants his fine-dining spot to be a ‘celebratory place.’ At $250 per person, Pineapple and Pearls will certainly charge like a restaurant designed for special occasions. Silverman's menu will instantly become one of the most expensive on the planet.”
The Watergate Hotel will feature new restaurant and bar concepts at its reopening, slated for March. The main restaurant is Kingbird, a fine-dining dinner restaurant in the evening, and a casual restaurant during the day, serving breakfast and lunch, as well as a casual-dining component in the evening. The Next Whiskey Bar is the lobby bar with a significant whiskey, bourbon and rye menu. The name is taken from lyrics to a Doors song, for those boomers who thought it sounded familiar. The property will also feature a rooftop lounge called Top of the Gate (or is it ’Gate, get it?) that has a panoramic view of the Potomac River. The executive chef is Michael Santoro, most recently at Andaz 5th Avenue in New York. In D.C., he served as chef de cuisine under Brian McBride at Blue Duck Tavern at the Park Hyatt Hotel in the West End. Cooper’s Hawk Winery & Restaurant is slated to open this month in Ashburn’s Belmont Chase Shopping Center. It offers modern American food, featuring their own proprietary varietals crafted from their Illinois-based winery. The large 10,985-square-foot restaurant will offer indoor and outdoor seating for more than 300 guests, as well as a large private dining and events room. They also offer a wine of the month club. There are currently 20 locations around the country, including a Richmond site. They also expect to open in Reston this year. Jeffrey Patterson is the general manager. Papadopoulos Properties is working with Boston chef Michael Schlow to expand his concepts in the DMV. Schlow’s Italian concept, Alta Strada, is slated to open in Northern Virginia’s Mosaic District where matchbox and Ted’s Bulletin are (also Papadopoulos deals). Alta Strada is also slated to open in the Mount Vernon Triangle section of DC. Schlow has already made his mark in D.C. with TICO and The Riggsby at The Carlyle — Dupont Circle Hotel. C-C-Changes: Wagshal’s opened a full service restaurant behind the deli at its Spring Valley (AU Park) location on Yuma Street NW. The Fuchs family hopes to do the same at his other location at 3201 New Mexico Ave. NW, serving breakfast and dinner … Raku in Dupont Circle has re-branded as Rakuya, Japanese Kitchen & Bar. Chef Update: Jose Adorno is the chef at Mix Bar & Grille in Silver Spring. He was previously chef de cuisine at Graffiato ... Ricarda Planas has been appointed chef at Mpire in the Golden Triangle. Quick Hits: Manuel Iguina, owner of Mio in downtown D.C., does not plan to renew his lease, but does plan to open a similar concept, called Acerola (cherry-esque), in Fairfax over the summer. Chop’t Creative Salad Co. has signed deals to open in Vienna, Rockville and near Nats Park. These three new locations will give them 15 in the D.C. metro area, all part of the Papadopoulos portfolio. Haikan is the name of the new ramen restaurant slated to open this spring in Shaw by the folks who brought you Daikaya. The 2,000-plus square-foot restaurant will offer a varied selection of Sapporo-style ramen. Nobu is slated to open this fall in West End at 2501 M St. NW. Jackie Greenbaum, plans to open Little Coco’s, an Italian eatery in Petworth. Adam Harvey will reign over the kitchen, as he has done at Jackie’s in Silver Spring. Un Je Ne Sais Quoi will open where Hello Cupcake was in Dupont Circle. It will specialize in merveilleux, a pastry with layers of merengue and ganache. The Tilted Kilt plans to open in Silver Spring and in Sterling by end of the second quarter in 2016. Pamplona, a Spanish tapas restaurant from the Social Restaurant Group, will open where SoBe Bar and Bistro was. Super Grill opens in Merrifield’s H Mart shopping center where Mario’s Pizza House was. Arepas Pues is slated to open on Fenton Street in downtown Silver Spring, serving hand-made corn arepas, complementing Venezuelan, Colombian and Cuban cuisine. Arepas are cornmeal pockets traditionally served with diverse fillings. Burton’s Bar & Grill is planning to open this March in Alexandria. Dylyn Coolidge, formerly of Commissary and the Beacon Bar, will be the chef, adding vegetarian and gluten-free dishes to the menu. Zannchi Korean Kitchen will open in the Wisconsin Avenue space in Georgetown where Yummi Crawfish was; the owners are Georgetown MBA students. They plan to open in February. From the folks at Eat Well DC who brought you The Pig, Commissary, Grillfish and Logan Tavern, comes The Bird, slated to open in Shaw on 11th Street NW, specializing in — what else? — chicken. Seating capacity will accommodate 99 with plans for an outdoor patio. Just Chicken is also slated to open in the U Street corridor this season. Chuy’s Tex Mex is slated to open in Sterling. They just opened in Woodbridge on Prince William Parkway, in addition to the units open in Fairfax and Springfield. More are planned in the DMV in 2016. Smashburger opens in Rockville at 1800 Rockville Pike before end of the first quarter 2016. This will be the 11th Smashburger to open in the D.C. metro area. Linda Roth is president of Linda Roth Associates, a public relations and marketing firm that specializes in the hospitality industry, Reach her at: Linda@LindaRothPR.com.
Chuy’s plans to expand further into Northern Virginia when they open in Woodbridge in October and Sterling in the end of the Q2 2016. Clarendon and Reston are also targeted. They are also looking at sites in Maryland – Rockville and Columbia. Openings Update: British Columbia-based Earls Kitchen + Bar is expecting a late 3Q opening at their Tysons Corner location in the new Macerich project, TysonsOne. Please, no “apostrophe,” as it’s named for Earl Sr. and Earl Jr. (two Earls). Tadich Grill now expects to also open in late 3Q at 10th & Pennsylvania Ave. NW in D.C. Succotash is planning to start serving its unique brand of southern hospitality and food from Chef Edward Lee, in National Harbor, Maryland in August. Southern food with a twist gains in popularity here, as Magnolia’s on King is expected to open this month at 703 King Street in Old Town, Alexandria, brought to you by Steve Fogleman and Mehrnoosh Rajabi. It seats 60 on the first floor dining room with a 30-seat second floor bar and lounge. Annapolis native Brian Rowe is the executive chef. He previously worked at Wolfgang Puck’s Grand Café in Orlando as well as Spago in Beverly Hills. He also did an internship with Chef Jacques Ganeu in Lyon, France. Hans Fogleman will be the pastry chef. Craft mixologist Zachary Faden will be in charge of the bar program, while Olivia Mills will act as service and beverage director. Lupo Verde will have a sister operation in D.C.’s Palisades neighborhood at 4814 MacArthur Blvd. NW. Same owners as the one on 14th Street: Lahlou and Antonio Matarazzo. Actually, Lahlou owns the building and lives in the Palisades. He also owns Tunnicliff’s, Ulah Bistro and Station 4. Not only will it offer Lupo Verde’s signature homemade pastas, it will have an expanded menu of entrees. Their menu is by chef Domenico Apollar. It will seat 100 on two levels, with a lower level that houses a small gourmet market which will carry Lupo Verde’s homemade pastas and sauces. There is also a chef’s table on the lower level. An October opening is planned. Just Opened: Annapolis-based Blackwall Hitch, a modern interpretation of a classic shore tavern, recently opened in Old Town, Alexandria on the waterfront adjacent to The Torpedo Factory, on Cameron Street. The two-level restaurant opens this month with 315 seats inside and 105 more on the patios. &pizza opened a 44-seat restaurant with an outdoor patio at Pike & Rose in Rockville. The chain also launched its &wine program at its six D.C. locations. Kona Grill just opened in Rosslyn at 1776 Wilson Blvd across from where 100 Montaditos used to be. Daring restaurant, bar and club pioneer (into under-developed neighborhoods) Joe Englert is planning to go yet again where no established restaurateur has gone before – Ivy City. He plans to open a coffee shop, beer garden, music venue and bouldering gym at 1240 Mount Olivet Rd. NE, not far from the Hecht’s warehouse. He partner is real estate investor Langdon Hample. The 3,500-square-foot coffee shop will be run by Qualia Coffee Roasters, the Petworth coffee shop. The beer garden and bar portion of the project is still on the drawing board, whether they go big or go smaller and local. Regardless, all that rock climbing (or bouldering) will result in big thirst for beer. Paul Carlson of Vinoteca & family will be working to open The Royal in 3Q 2015. Named for the Florida Avenue corner liquor store that had occupied the space previously, The Royal will serve Latin-American food, which reflects the family’s Colombian heritage. The plan is to serve food all day long. The comfort food menu will be crafted by Chef Lonnie Zoeller. Expect exotic cocktails made with exotic fruit. Quick Hits: Stanford Grill plans to open in the Tower Oaks area of Montgomery County in the 3Q 2015. Pinstripes is targeting Tysons Corner for a 4Q 2017 opening, as well as the second phase of Pike & Rose in Rockville. Linda Roth is president of Linda Roth Associates, a public relations & marketing firm that specializes in the hospitality industry, providing creative connections through media relations, marketing initiatives, community outreach and special events. Reach her at: Linda@LindaRothPR.com or www.lindarothpr.com or #LindaRothPR.
Walking into After Peacock Room is like opening an elegant coffee table book and spending an afternoon in its glossy pages. The location, a former consignment shop, has metamorphosed into a delightful teahouse and fine-dining café. With its gilded industrial hardware, crystal chandeliers, plush blue benches and peacock-colored walls, it is both cozy and hip. The aesthetic of After Peacock Room is inspired by James McNeill Whistler’s “Harmony in Blue and Gold: The Peacock Room,” created in 1877 for wealthy English shipowner Frederick Richards Leyland. Whistler’s work was purchased by Charles Lang Freer and later installed in the Smithsonian’s Freer Gallery on the Mall, where it remains today. Heewon Ra is the lady behind After Peacock Room. The Korean beauty, who has lived in D.C. since 2001, remembers the first time she saw the Peacock Room at the Freer Gallery more than ten years ago. That moment would spark a sense of wonderment that would flower years later in her first venture into the restaurant business. Prior to opening, Ra’s love of art and interior design drew her to a curatorial internship at the Hirshhorn Museum and to studies at the Corcoran College of Art and Design. After graduating, she spent time in Paris, where she fell in love with Mariage Frères, the famed teahouse in her Saint-Germain-des-Prés neighborhood. Upon returning to D.C., she dreamed about creating something similar to Mariage Frères, and Georgetown, with its pretty homes and European feel, seemed like just the place. “My goal was to provide excellent food and service in a nice ambiance,” she said. Inspired by the beautiful Prussian blues, deep greens and gold that come alive in Whistler’s work, After Peacock Room serves as a contemporary interpretation of the classic. The quaint size of the teahouse is part of its appeal. In 2011, Ra snatched up the building on 27th and P. She began construction in 2013, and by 2014 After Peacock Room was in business. Along with being her first restaurant, the space was also her first interior-design project, and the outcome is a tribute to her talent. The interior walls, which are canvas, are layered in oil paint in hues of sea green and midnight blue that come alive at night. The dining room in the back, called the Hawthorn Flower Room, is inspired by Leyland’s collection of blue and white porcelain; the walls are painted with gold flowers. Rockville-based woodworker Jed Dinger made the communal dining tables, and the black bistro chairs that accent them were freshened with brushstrokes of gold paint, which Ra added herself. After Peacock Room was closed from June to November while the kitchen was updated and the wine-and-beer license was pending. During that period, the decision was made to transition from a full teahouse to a daytime tea-and-coffee destination with a fine-dining dinner component. Chef Nick Sharpe, who worked under the acclaimed Michael Mina in San Francisco, now helms the kitchen. The menu features the best of seasonal tastes. On Sundays, After Peacock Room offers takeout coffee service from 9 to noon, with the proceeds donated to local charities. Ra looks forward to growing the restaurant’s dinner business and being able to host small private parties. For now, though, she is focused on sustaining a unique teahouse and an elegant dining experience in the neighborhood. After Peacock Room is located at 2622 P. St. NW.
Minneapolis-based Granite City Food & Brewery plans to open its first East Coast location (and 33rd in the nation) late in April at National Harbor, on the bottom level of the Esplanade Building. With 300+ seats, this casual restaurant will feature a brewery, an open kitchen, a spacious patio and private dining. The plan is to have more than a dozen 450-gallon tanks on site. The company also owns Cadillac Ranch, which is slated to have a $1-million renovation this fall. Quick Hits – Shaw edition: The Shay apartment building is expected to welcome a Tim Ma restaurant and a Compass Coffee … A ramen shop from Daikaya’s Daisuke Utagawa, Yama Jewayni and Katsuya Fukushima is slated for Shaw … Expect a Neighborhood Restaurant Group restaurant from their chef Rob Rubba in the old Atlantic Plumbing building. More Shaw: All Purpose, a pizza-centric Italian American restaurant, is slated to open in the Colonel in Shaw at 1250 9th St. NW. It’s a team effort from the Bloomingdale restaurateurs who brought you The Red Hen – Michael Friedman, Michael O’Malley, and Sebastian Zutant – and Boundary Stone owners Gareth Croke and Colin McDonough. Michael will work with pastry chef Tiffany MacIsaac of Buttercream Bakeshop to create a special pizza dough. MacIsaac will consult on All Purpose’s desserts, as well as open a bakeshop in the same building. The beverage menu will be a collaboration between Zutant, Croke and McDonough. The 80-seat restaurant is expected to open in the fourth quarter of this year. Also opening in the Colonel is a Mexican restaurant, Espita Mezcalería. Shaw resident and owner, Josh Phillips, a Master Mezcalier, plans an innovative bar program that highlights the many varietals of the spirit, paired with the complex flavors of food from the southern Mexican state of Oaxaca. A Cornell grad, Phillips worked in bars and restaurants in Philadelphia before studying mezcal in Oaxaca. A September opening is planned. Robert Wiedmaier will open Urban Heights – with chef Cliff Wharton at the helm – at the former location of The Roof in Bethesda. In line with the chef’s Filipino heritage, Philippine and South Asian cuisine will be the heart of the menu. The restaurant will feature small plates on three floors along with a rooftop bar and a tuna bar – offering everything from the unusual ahi poke to the popular tuna tartare. A May opening is planned. Cathal and Meshelle Armstrong plan to open their first D.C. restaurant in Southwest D.C.’s Wharf development. It will be different from Restaurant Eve, serving food from all over Asia, notably Filipino cuisine. Filipino food is trending hot now, as there is also Purple Patch in Mount Pleasant and Bad Saint in Columbia Heights, as well as the aforementioned Urban Heights in Bethesda. The Filipino connection is Meshelle, who is of Filipino descent. Chef and Manager Update: Michael Williams was appointed beverage director of Bastille and its sister restaurant Bistrot Royal, both in Old Town, Alexandria. He previously worked at The Oval Room and The Occidental Grill … Bobbie Miller is the new chef and beverage director at the Westin Arlington Gateway and will oversee hotel’s Italian restaurant Pinzimini … Fabrice Bendano is the new pastry chef at Le Diplomate in D.C.’s Logan Circle. He has worked at Adour and Citronelle and, most recently, as a consultant for Alain Ducasse’s miX in Las Vegas. He won the RAMMY award for Best Pastry Chef in 2012. Quick Hits: The Navy Yard Oyster Co., a wine-centric oyster bar, is slated to open at the Lumber Shed in Southeast … The Woodward Building on 15th Street in downtown D.C. will soon feature an intimate prepared-food shop and bakery from the owners of Pleasant Pops in Adams Morgan ... Blackfinn will open a 6,500-square-foot restaurant at the Loudoun Station project in the fourth quarter of 2015. There are currently locations in downtown D.C. and Merrifield … Basil Leaf, a fast-casual Mediterranean restaurant with Persian influence (the chef is Reza Monsefan, who used to run Pars) will also open there this summer. Openings Update: Momofuku Milk Bar has a summer opening scheduled … Pizza Studio in Dupont Circle is now planning an early second-quarter opening … Tadich Grill is now aiming for the middle of the second quarter … Smokehouse Live, a barbecue restaurant from Jim Foss, most recently of Hill Country BBQ, and Kristopher Diemar, formerly of Carmine’s, are taking this barbecue concept to Leesburg and plan to open mid-spring. Linda Roth is president of Linda Roth Associates, a public relations and marketing firm that specializes in the hospitality industry.