Welcome to am Intel, your roundup of DC food and restaurant news. Tips are always welcome, drop them here.
The Brass Rabbit Public House brings lettuce wraps, carrot fries and rabbit-themed cocktails to Clarendon in the former Bracket Room space (1210 N. Garfield Street, Arlington), Arlington Magazine reports. Opening hours are weekdays from 11 a.m. to midnight and weekends from 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. Brunch is served from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekends. Happy hour runs weekdays from 3-6 p.m. with $8 martinis and lettuce wraps.
A cafe for cats settles in Leesburg
In Loudon County, a cat cafe serving cookies and coffee is opening Friday, April 1, reports Now. Customers of Leesburg’s new Catty Corner can go to the cafe downstairs or head to the Cat Lounge (where a ticket comes with at the cat time, coffee and a cookie). Owner Heather Donahue plans to open up the balcony and expand the menu. Book time with the cats here. (116 East Market Street, Leesburg)
140-year-old chocolatier known for 10-foot-tall chocolate waterfall – and more new spots – is heading to Tysons
Tysons continues to attract top chefs and restaurants. Joining Long Shot Hospitality’s new Tex-Mex restaurant and new restaurants at Stellina and Sisters Thai, at Capital One Center, Michelin-starred chef Pepe Moncayo is also heading to a 7,000-square-foot eatery, reports Washington Business Journal. No word yet on what type of restaurant he is considering. (1803 Capital One Drive, Tysons)
140-year-old Italian chocolatier Venchi Fine Italian Chocolates is opening this summer at Tysons Corner Center, Tysons reporter said. The premium chocolate brand currently has 150 outlets in 70 countries. The Union Square store in New York has a “45-foot-long, 10-foot-tall chocolate waterfall,” which it claims is the largest in North America. Besides gourmet chocolates, the Turin-based chocolate maker will also sell ice cream, crepes and coffee.
Additionally, Hei Hei Tiger is reviving his Cantonese restaurant with roast meat and noodle soup at Urbanspace in the Tysons Galleria under new chef Andrew Chiou (of Pentagon City’s Lucky Danger), the Tysons reporter said. Hei Hei Tiger, after opening the octagon-shaped bar, will fully open in June. Urbanspace reopened on March 22.
Workout and eat out at the same location in the courthouse
A 7,500 square foot space combining training and catering will open in Arlington in July. FitDistrict gym and cafe, by Arlington resident Catherine Ford, will offer hot yoga, cycling and interval training, along with wheatgrass shots and health-focused versions of classics like shepherd’s pie in the old spot of Ray’s the Steaks (2300 Wilson Blvd.) at the courthouse, according to ARLnow.com. Ford plans to open FitDistrict in July. Ray’s the Steaks closed in 2019.
The most important meal of the day
Sincerely Breakfast opened in Dupont Circle next to Kramer’s, reports Popville.com. It takes over the old spot from Butter Chicken, which lasted less than a year. The menu includes crab cookies, fried chicken cookies, avocado toast and burritos. Hours of operation are Wednesday through Sunday, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. (1506 19th Street, NW)
Jason Miskiri will bring all-day breakfast to Silver Spring in May when the Breakfast Club debuts at the Fenton Silver Spring apartment complex, according to Source of the Spring. The menu will lean towards the flavors of the Caribbean and the southern United States, with dishes such as omelettes, French toast stuffed with cream cheese and strawberries, lamb chops, chicken and waffles, shrimp and oatmeal.
Late Night Cookies Are Coming to Arlington and DC
Bakery chain Insomnia Cookies is bringing more late-night cookie options to DC this spring with the opening of a location on 8th Street near Howard University. The fast-growing chain born in a dormitory at the University of Pennsylvania in 2003 currently has 215 stores across the United States.
Meanwhile, a DMV-born option for late-night cooking cravings lands in Arlington. Ghost Kitchen Bakery (located in the Allspice Catering space) MOLTN Cookies opens April 2 with ten types of cookies, plus several types of shakes and sundaes. Hours of operation are Sunday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 5 p.m. to midnight, and Friday and Saturday from 5 p.m. to 2 a.m. Delivery is available via moltncookies.com, Uber Eats, DoorDash, GrubHub and Postmates. (6017 Wilson Blvd, Arlington)
Nina May’s owners have a new project in the works
Elena James, a 5,000 square foot cafe and market from owners Nina May, will open in Chevy Chase with a menu of casual, seasonal American fare by mid-2023. Offering full-service breakfast, lunch and dinner, the space will also have a patio in addition to the 150-seat dining room, reports the Washingtonian. (8525 Chevy Chase Lake Terrace)
For the pop-ups that need a home, a space in Shepherd Park
For pop-up operators looking for a location, there is a vacant spot in Shepherd Park looking for a temporary tenant while landlords look for a permanent tenant. It is leaded, but has no hood or vent. The top floor is reinforced to hold tables and chairs. The owners are ready to offer it below market to food entrepreneurs. (7350 Georgia Avenue NW)
Extensions for Compass Coffee and Foxtrot
Foxtrot Food Market, which just opened its first location in Virginia, is doubling its footprint in the region with four new locations in 2022. These include the first outlet in Bethesda (7262 Woodmont Avenue), the fourth in DC in Logan Circle (1341 14th Street NW), a small take-out store in Farragut Square (888 17th Street NW), and a second location in Virginia at Rosslyn in the Highlands (1771 Pierce Street).
Compass Coffee has been busy opening two new locations this week – one at Navy Yard (1201 half-street) and one in Fairfax, Virginia (10400 Fairfax Blvd.). Meanwhile, Compass Coffee is converting a former bank’s drive-thru into the first Compass Coffee with a drive-thru. It lands in Arlington this summer at the old Suntrust Bank building, Washington Business Journal reports.
Dina Daniel de Fava Pot brings Egypt to New Orleans
Fava Pot’s Dina Daniel is heading to New Orleans this week as a guest chef for the Queen Nefertari Exhibit Celebration at Ralph Brennan’s Cafe Noma at the New Orleans Museum of Art, where she will prepare a traditional Egyptian dinner .
More European sweets target Georgetown
New York-based Maman Bakery is bringing French baked goods to Wisconsin Avenue, joining a growing number of sweet hits along the Strip — Boulangerie Christophe, LA Burdick and Petite Souer — according to the Georgetown Metropolitan. (1353 Wisconsin Avenue)
*Update (03/21/2022; 07:53 PM): Insomnia Cookies has multiple locations in DC The one near Howard University was incorrectly listed as the first.