Auf Wiedersehen to A-Town
The restaurant group behind Ballston’s A-Town Bar and Grill announced yesterday that it will convert the popular hangout for young professionals into a German beer hall called Bronson. According to a news release from MacNac Hospitality president Mike Cordero, the company has renewed its lease with CBRE for 20 years and expects to have the 6,000-square-foot space ready to host nearly 300 customers for a grand opening in April. Bronson will sell American-German food, fill growlers of craft beer, and feature games including foosball, cornhole, darts, bocce, and shuffleboard. Scott Parker, who co-owns Bronson with Nick Cordero, told Eater about plans to flip A-Town last month. Parker is also opening a restaurant for fried chicken and fresh oysters at the former Tasty Burger space in Shaw.
WaPo renounces ‘$20 diner’
The Washington Post published a column from Tim Carman yesterday in which the food writer explained he was dropping the “$20 diner” tag from all future columns because he feels it does a disservice to his subjects. Noting that he mostly writes about immigrant cuisines, Carman cited a conversation with David Chang that opened his eyes to how grouping cultures under a “cheap eats” umbrella perpetuates a stereotype that they’re not special or worthy of higher prices. Carman won’t alter his approach; he’ll still search for overlooked restaurants and serve as the foil to fine-dining critic Tom Sietsema. [WaPo]
Bowser learns her lesson
During a lighter moment in Muriel Bowser’s speech yesterday at the swearing-in ceremony for her second term as D.C. mayor, she notably changed her tune on the city’s most controversial condiment. After saying she was “annoyed” by mumbo sauce in a Facebook post last November, the mayor promised not to repeat the mistake. “You probably understand why I will never utter the words mumbo sauce, except in total praise, ever again,” she said. [DCist]
Don Ciccio gears up for move
Don Ciccio & Figli, the D.C. distiller of a variety of liqueurs, plans to leave its old Ivy City distillery on Kansas Avenue NW for one nearly twice as large at nearby 1907 Fairview Avenue by March. Washington Business Journal reports the company has raised $430,800 for a new facility that will be closer to some of the neighborhood’s other spirits makers and will help grow Don Ciccio’s production from 30,000 bottles a year to 200,000. [WBJ]