D.C.’s latest outpost of modern American brasserie the Smith encourages communal eating and drinking with a lineup of entrees including spicy fried chicken, pepperoni pizza with pickled chiles, and jalapeno-cheddar grits that can be washed down with boozy punch bowls.
The new restaurant is opening Friday, May 4 at 1314 U Street NW. The regional brand, which has four Manhattan locations, opened a flagship Penn Quarter location last year.
Executive chef Brian Ellis is releasing a slew of new items at the new 150-seat spot, including square pizzas, pastas made on-site, and raw bar selections of shellfish, oysters, and fluke that can join forces on seafood platters ($70 or $115). There’s also rotating daily specials ranging from soft shell crabs to short ribs. A new “U Street Burger” comes topped with bacon tomato jam. Best sellers across the brand are staying put, like its skillet roasted mac and cheese, as well as steamed mussels.
Drinks flowing out of its curved 25-seat bar include French 75 slushies, 20 wines by the glass or carafe, and lots of local beers.
Its largely black-and-white design, from Nema Workshop out of NYC and //3877 Architects, includes polished white subway tiling and patterned mosaic flooring. Other elements include smoked antique mirrors, dark walnut wood tabletops, and a bathroom-area photo booth — an iconic fixture at some of its locations. There’s also a private dining area in the back for 30.
The Smith is projected to operate from 5 p.m. to midnight on weekdays, and from 5 p.m. to 1 a.m. on weekends to start. Weekend brunch is slated to launch mid-May, with weekday brunch to follow.
Status: Projected to open at 5 p.m. 1314 U Street NW; website.
Scroll down to view the opening menu: