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All of St. Anselm’s Show-Stopping Details at Union Market

Colorful sketches break up the newcomer’s epic wine list, and steaks are served with pocket knives

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Bartenders tilt deer antlers to pour beers and draft cocktails at St. Anselm.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC

A sister location to Brooklyn neighborhood tavern St. Anselm joined the D.C. dining landscape this week, letting Top Chef alum Marjorie Meek-Bradley show off her carnivorous cooking talents from its open and spacious stainless steel kitchen.

Aside from her lineup of neatly-presented lamb tartare and seasoned meats meticulously sourced from top U.S. farms, another star at St. Anselm is the eclectic 19-seat bar welcoming guests inside the new 7,000-square-foot Northeast restaurant (1250 5th Street NE).

The U-shaped setup is packed with quirky details and knick knacks at every turn, with deer antlers doubling as beer tap handles and furry taxidermy creatures staring at drinkers perched on colorful stools below. Stacks of vintage books, sequined fez caps, Miller Lite cans, and reclaimed wooden bannisters round out the offbeat, yet cohesive, setting only a Brooklyn hospitality vet like Joe Carroll (behind hip barbecue and beer bars Fette Sau and Spuyten Duyvil) could conjure up.

St. Anselm co-owner Joe Carroll, who claims he’s no designer, spent months consignment shopping to collect bar decor.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC

St. Anselm, a joint effort between Carroll and James Beard Foundation Award-winning restaurateur Stephen Starr, has a sleek metal wine book that also dabbles in design: Interspersed within the thick stack of 450 wine options are vino-themed illustrations from A.E. Kieren, who also added artistic touches to Starr’s perennially packed Logan Circle restaurant Le Diplomate. Here’s a look at the list:

Its opening cocktail menu includes a Bloody Mary served all night, along with staples like a daiquiri and boulevardier on draft, as well as brandy, sherry, and tequila “inspired” classics ($12 to $21). And to capitalize on cognac having a moment, there’s a sharable punch bowl starring the spirit alongside Jamaican rum, citrus, orange curaçao, and ginger beer ($50).

St. Anselm steaks arrive at the table alongside French Opinel cutlery — which are actually open (and locked) pocket knives.
Tierney Plumb/Eater DC

St. Anselm plateware is a mix of vintage finds and the same ornate brand found at Starr’s Michelin-rated Clocktower in NYC:

St. Anselm’s $24 flat iron is one of the best deals on the beef front, co-owner Joe Carroll tells Eater.
Tierney Plumb/Eater DC
St. Anselm chef Marjorie Meek-Bradley came up with the heirloom tomatoes and fry bread app — sort of a deconstructed pizza — based on a blunder in the kitchen.
Tierney Plumb/Eater DC
Instead of flower beds, the 18-seat outdoor patio at St. Anselm is lined with bright red peppers and tall golden wheat.
Tierney Plumb/Eater DC
St. Anselm's 120-seat dining room is accented by old fraternity banners.
Rey Lopez/Eater DC

The anticipated restaurant is open for dinner service daily at 5 p.m., with brunch and reservations for its dressed-down “Beef Steak” room coming at a TBA date.

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