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NoPa Will Get a 9-Day Mediterranean Makeover in Penn Quarter

Ashok Bajaj’s American brasserie will refresh its menu and design in the new year

Nopa Rey Lopez/Eater D.C.

Bring on the olive oil

With an American brasserie menu full of global plates spanning from korma pumpkin soup to falafel to a bowl of poke ramen, NoPa Kitchen + Bar was beginning to feel too unfocused for Ashok Bajaj. Citing Bajaj’s desire for a restaurant with “more of an identity” in the Penn Quarter space, Washingtonian reports that Bajaj’s Knightsbridge Restaurant Group will close NoPa on Jan. 1 for renovations and re-open with a western Mediterranean menu under the name Olivia on Jan. 10. Longtime chef Matt Kuhn will continue to lead the kitchen, Washingtonian reports.

The refresh joins a rising Mediterranean movement in D.C. Hazel debuted a new Turkish leaning menu under chef Robert Curtis yesterday in Shaw. Julii, a French Bistro that borrows from all corners of the Mediterranean, opened last week in North Bethesda. Earlier this year, Knightsbridge transformed Ardeo + Bardeo in Cleveland Park into Israeli restaurant Sababa. [Washingtonian]

Not spooked

The sibling duo fo Ian and Eric Hilton are planning to open their first restaurant project outside of D.C. in a Northern Virginia space where Mike Isabella and RJ Cooper have failed, Washingtonian reports. The brothers behind Marvin, Chez Billy Sud, and a whole swath of the U Street NW corridor, plan to put a traditional French bistro in the former home of Requin Brasserie and Gypsy Soul in Fairfax’s Mosaic District development. [Washingtonian]

Tacos incoming

A Popville reader spotted a stand from H Street NE restaurant and former taco truck Chupacabra on the ground level of the Midtown Center development that replaced the old Washington Post building on 15th Street NW. Nicholas Stefanelli (Masseria, Officina) has plans to open a trailblazing Greek restaurant in the complex as well. [Popville]

White tablecloth Afghan

The owner of well-regarded Afghan Bistro in Springfield, Virginia, and Bistro Aracosia in the Palisades has a third restaurant planned to open in McLean, Virginia, in March. Northern Virginia Magazine reports that the new restaurant will be a spinoff of Arocosia and will feature white tablecloths, servers wearing ties, and large-format meat dishes. [Northern Virginia Magazine]

Carry-out aid

Sumah’s West African Restaurant in Shaw has established a GoFundMe page in the wake of a devastating fire and is more than halfway toward reaching its $5,000 goal.

Airport treat

Garrett Popcorn Shops, the brand with those kernels people from Chicago won’t stop crowing about, announced last week it has opened a location at Reagan National Airport in the pre-security area near Terminal C. Get the Garrett’s Mix of cheesy and caramel flavors and revel in the nonsensical pleasure it provides. Here’s the Eater D.C. guide for hungry travelers at DCA, too.


800 F St NW, Washington, D.C. 20004 (202) 347-4667 Visit Website