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D.C.’s Most Anticipated Spring Restaurant Openings

The hottest restaurants en route to Washington

Siren is opening at The Darcy hotel next month
Tierney Plumb is the editor of Eater DC, covering all things food and drink around the nation's capital.

Spring kicks off busy season for D.C. restaurant openings, and there are plenty of blockbuster debuts to get excited about.

Here are the nearly two dozen of the most anticipated restaurant openings, as well as updates on many other projects in the works.

Poke Papa

Address: 806 H St. NW

From: Owner Kerry Chao

The Situation: Situated in the former Z Pizza space, the new fast-casual restaurant will feature both customizable and signature bowls. While poké is traditionally Hawaiian, Chao’s menu will offer a wider variety of flavor combos. Choose from different bowl sizes, like snack to large, or make it a poké wrap.

Projected Opening: Mid-March

Poké Papa


Address: 1324 H St. NE

From: Swiss-trained chefs David Fritsche and Silvan Kraemer

The Situation: The 3,200-square-foot spot will transport guests to Europe with exposed brick, wood accents, and a rustic feel. Expect artistic odes to the team’s heritage, like a chalk drawing of the Swiss mountains from a local artist. A retractable garage door entrance overlooking H Street NE will lead to a 65-seat dining room with an open kitchen, as well as a heated back patio.

Projected Opening: March 27


Address: Marriott Marquis Washington, 901 Massachussetts Ave. NW

From: Mike Isabella Concepts, Marriott

The Situation: Arroz, Spanish for rice, is Mike Isabella’s take on the contemporary flavors of Southern Spain and Morocco. It’s a totally different kind of venture for the Italian “Top Chef” alum; expect tapas and rice dishes, as well as meats and cheeses from Spain, spices from Morocco, and more.

Projected Opening: March 27

*Previous coverage of Arroz

Le DeSales

Address: 1725 DeSales St. NW

From: Executive chef/partner Raphael Francois

The Situation: A sampling of modern French cuisine coming to this new Golden Triangle entrant includes artichokes with ricotta and lemon forte mandarin oranges to red snapper “crudo” with peas, watermelon, and mojito. Expect 100 wines by the bottle and more than 20 by the glass. The 119-seat brasserie will also feature a small sidewalk café with views of the Mayflower Hotel.

Projected Opening: Late March

Le DeSales
Tierney Plumb


Address: 900 16th St. NW

From: Restaurateur Hakan Ilhan, chefs Frank Ruta and Aggie Chin

The situation: The owner of Alba Osteria and Ottoman Taverna will next open this French-influenced project downtown with food from the Palena and Grill Room alums.

Projected Opening: Late March

Tierney Plumb

Taqueria del Barrio

Address: 821 Upshur St. NW

From: Anna Bran-Leis and Shawn Leis (owners of DC Empanadas in Union Market), Mikey Torres

The situation: The authentic Mexican taqueria will be the first standalone brick-and-mortar concept from the DC Empanadas team.

Projected opening: Late March

Tacos galore at Taqueria del Barrio

Patio at Fish

Address: 101 MGM National Ave, Oxon Hill, Md.

From: ThinkFoodGroup

The Situation: The casual patio encompasses the space outside of Fish and includes views of the Potomac from the bar, lounge chairs, and communal seating areas. Think: crabs, oysters, and cold beer. Expect to spot José Andrés conducting outdoor crab boils on site.

Projected Opening: Late March/April

The patio at Fish
Tierney Plumb

Sushi Gakyu

Address: 1420 New York Ave. NW

From: Yoshihisa “Yoshi” Ota

The situation: This upscale restaurant is planning to have both traditional and modern sushi and sashimi offerings.

Projected Opening: Late March/early April

*Previous Sushi Gakyu coverage

Continental Beer Garden

Address: 1901 N. Fort Myer Dr., Arlington, Va.

From: Curt Large, owner of Continental Pool Lounge

The Situation: The 180-seat indoor/outdoor beer garden in Rosslyn is a service station-turned-inside bar with a kitchen, while the gigantic outdoor beer garden will have two bocce courts, picnic tables, and lots of comfy outdoor seating.

Projected Opening: April

Five to One

Address: 903 U St. NW

From: Trevor Frye

The situation: The former Dram & Grain bartender is branching out on his own in 2017 with two new projects, including this 9:30 Club-themed cocktail bar.

Projected Opening: April

Truxton Inn

Address: 251 Florida Ave. NW

From: Owner Matt Weiss (Bar 201, McClellan's Retreat, Barrel) and bar man Brian Nixon of McClellan's

The Situation: Named for the Truxton neighborhood (though technically in Bloomingdale), the upscale neighborhood cocktail bar will feature two sides to its menu — one for classic cocktails, and the other for Nixon's versions of those cocktails.

Projected Opening: April

*Previous coverage of Truxton Inn

Truxton Inn wants to fill the void of upscale cocktail bars in this part of the city.

Lupo Verde Palisades

Address: 4814 MacArthur Blvd. NW

From: Med Lahlou and Antonio Matarazzo of the Lahlou Group

The Situation: The second location for the rustic Italian brand will boast a variety of small plates, house-made charcuterie, breads, cheeses, and antipasti, and of course, homemade pizzas and pastas. The 100-seat spot will feature a lower-level Italian market selling fresh and dried house-made pastas by the kilo.

Projected Opening: Mid-April

*Previous coverage of Lupo Verde

Lupo Verde’s second location will have an Italian mart.
Rodney Choice


Address: 1515 Rhode Island Ave. NW

From: Restaurateur Robert Wiedmaier

The Situation: The D.C. chef brings the seafood restaurant to Scott Circle’s soon-to-open hotel, The Darcy, with fish reeled in from around the world (think: Alaskan king crab to sea urchin from Japan). Its name nods to the seductive sailor-luring creatures of Greek mythology. Its brass-trimmed interior mimics a captain’s quarters, and artwork will include folkloric depictions of mermaids and old-school tattoo designs.

Projected Opening: Late April

The Line DC

Address: 1770 Euclid St. NW

From: Erik Bruner-Yang, Spike Gjerde, Corey Polyoka

The situation: This much-anticipated (and delayed) opening in Adams Morgan will showcase multiple projects, including three from Gjerde (including Mid-Atlantic and Southern restaurant A Rake’s Progress, plus a bar and coffee shop) and two from Bruner-Yang (Spoken English, and Brothers and Sisters, both Asian).

Projected Opening: May

*Previous The Line coverage

The Line DC

Sugar Factory

Address: 1100 S. Hayes St., Arlington, Va.

From: Charissa Davidovici, who opened the flagship in Las Vegas in 2010

The Situation: The Fashion Centre will get a little cooler with the arrival of Sugar Factory, known for its celebrity-endorsed Couture Pops (Britney and Drake are fans). There’s a gamut of offerings for every meal; think: spiked milkshakes to red velvet pancakes.

Projected Opening: May

Rendering of Pentagon City’s new Sugar Factory.
Dizon Collective

Bar Bao

Address: 3100 Clarendon Blvd., Arlington

From: Social Restaurant Group (Provision No. 14, The Prospect, Pamplona)

The Situation: The 5,300-square-foot restaurant, which replaces Mad Rose Tavern, will include a big outdoor patio and offer all kinds of fluffy, meat-filled Asian buns known as bao.

Projected Opening: Mid-spring

Fairmont Georgetown Courtyard

Address: 2401 M St. NW

From: AccorHotels, the new owner of the hotel group

The Situation: The freshly-renovated courtyard at Fairmont Georgetown will feature three fire pits, a soothing water feature, flowers, trees, and lots of space for outdoor cocktails and bites. One suggestion: The Beetini, which integrates honey made by busy bees on its roof.

Projected Opening: Spring

The Fairmont’s courtyard
Diana Bulger


Address: 3155 Mt. Pleasant St. NW

From: Karlos Leopold and Erin Lingle (team that brought Nido to Woodridge)

The Situation: Translating to "it rocks" in Spanish, expect a menu filled with small plates, paella, seafood dishes, grilled meat, vermouth on draft, and Spanish wines.

Projected Opening: Late spring

*Previous coverage of Mola!

Pizzeria Paradiso Hyattsville

Address: 4800 Rhode Island Ave., Hyattsville, Md.

From: Chef/founder Ruth Gresser

The Situation: The 2,000-square-foot indoor/outdoor space will feature a wood-fired Marra Forni oven and original retaining stone walls and a terrazzo floor. The beer program will be big, with 16 taps plus casks, overseen by beverage director Drew McCormick. Sharing a space with the nonprofit ArtWorks, the landmark building will become a community center that includes art and food.

Projected opening: Mid-spring

The Salt Line

Address: 79 Potomac Ave. SE (Dock 79 development)

From: Long Shot Hospitality (Sixth Engine, The Dubliner, Town Hall), led by Kyle Bailey, Jeremy Carman, Gavin Coleman, and Paul Holder

The Situation: The 3,500-square-foot space will boast an expansive dining room, outdoor seating and a riverfront bar. Chef Kyle Bailey will offer waterfront dining complete with a raw bar, seafood sausages, smoked and cured fish, as well as an extensive cocktail and craft beer list.

Projected Opening: Spring

Chef Kyle Bailey


Address: 1020 7th St. NW (inside the Walter E. Washington Convention Center)

From: David Strauss, Spike Mendelsohn, Vinoda Basnayake

The Situation: The new speakeasy sibling to The Sheppard will be bigger, with two levels and more cocktail choices. Expect the same old-timey soundtrack and bordello look.

Projected Opening: June

*Previous Morris coverage

ALSO OPENING THIS SPRING: Moby Dick House of Kabob at the The Village at Shirlington in Arlington, as well as Shake Shack 14th Street (March 16).

LOOKS LIKE SUMMER: All-Purpose Navy Yard, The Dabney Wine Bar, Succotash, America Eats Tavern’s relocation to Georgetown, new Addie’s (and Jeff Black’s butcher shop), Wahlburgers, Gravitas, Jinya Ramen’s D.C. location, Caboose Merrifield, and Reverie are among the many restaurants that will wait to debut until summer or later. A Nobu rep says to expect its D.C. opening “later this year.”

Rendering of Gravitas, shooting for a July opening in Ivy City
Natalie Park Design Studio

NO UPDATES AVAILABLE: Representatives for these restaurants did not respond, could not be reached, or did not provide updates on anticipated opening dates: Abunai Poke, Primrose, Smoke’s Poutinerie, Lei’d in Tysons Corner, Jenkins Barbecue, Village Whiskey, Whiskey & Oyster, Khao Poon, Blue Diner, Laduree, Asia Origin.