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More Details, Menu Items for Edgar Bar & Kitchen

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Executive Chef Andrew Morrison outside the future space of Edgar Bar & Kitchen.
Executive Chef Andrew Morrison outside the future space of Edgar Bar & Kitchen.

[Photos: Missy Frederick/Eater.com]

Fans of the now departed, much beloved Town & Country bar only have about a month until they have a new watering hole in the Mayflower hotel: Edgar Bar + Kitchen. After sharing some initial details in October, staff at the upcoming restaurant are now finalizing recipes as construction work continues on the 166-seat restaurant, which will be a focal point of the renovations the hotel has been undergoing.

The restaurant, which is being run by the existing staff at the hotel under the direction of executive chef Andrew Morrison, is shooting for a Dec. 13 opening date (they've got a private event scheduled for 12/12/2012, so they have to be at least pretty far along to pull that off). The restaurant's bar is smack in the middle of the space, which has its own entrance and valet stand along Connecticut Ave. NW (this should give the appearance of a destination restaurant to diners, rather than making it seem like an amenity for hotel guests). The entrance from the lobby to the restaurant has a look similar to a storefront window, explained director of food and beverage Jason Richter. The contractors have discovered the original 1925 floors while working on the buildout, which is designed by chic New York hospitality firm AvroKO (CB5 Restaurant Group worked with the hotel on the concept).
Edgar will aim to capture the "power lunch" and breakfast crowd that frequented the hotel's previous restaurants. But the main focus of the restaurant is creative bar food. This is going to be a place to drink — cocktails are built around branded spirits like Hudson Baby bourbon and Dewars Scotch, with creative accents (take an Earl Grey-infused vodka, for example). That results in cocktails such as the "Earl of Pearl", featuring the aforementioned tea-flavored liquor. In lieu of a happy hour, Edgar will have theme nights. "Monday Blues" means a $15 small pour of Johnny Walker Blue, for example. Fresh juices in flavors like passion fruit also figure into the cocktail menu.

The menu mostly has sharable small plates, and Morrison spoke with Eater while he was testing out some of his recipes, many of them large, shareable plates. Crab cakes right now are topped with an aoli spiked with smoked paprika. Homemade meatballs get shavings of parmesan cheese, while flatbreads have toppings such as prosciutto and arugula. Those sitting in the back dining area can focus on entrees like grassfed beef and seared tuna. Breakfast will be pretty traditional, with some lighter options, Morrison said, while brunch will be the place for more indulgent fare.

Morrison is also working on forming partnerships with local purveyors. He's lined up DC Brau, Flying Dog and Port City for the bar's beer selection, and is talking to farmers for everything from peanuts to grassfed beef. Dolci Gelati will make gelato for the restaurant. Eventually, Morrison might get extremely local and plant a rooftop garden as well.

· Edgar Bar + Kitchen Set to Open in the Mayflower Hotel [-EDC-]
· The Shutter: Cafe Promenade [-EDC]

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