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Ivy City Is Getting a Rooftop Cocktail Bar That Will Serve French Snacks

The Conservatory will open above Gravitas later this spring

A salad from Gravitas, which will soon source vegetables from a rooftop garden attached to a new bar.
Rey Lopez/Eater D.C.

Gravitas chef Matt Baker is taking more steps to introduce his fanciful, French-influenced cooking to a broader audience, announcing today that a rooftop cocktail bar with a tight menu of raw seafood, charcuterie, cheeses, and tartines will open above his tasting menu restaurant in Ivy City.

The Conservatory will boast a bar inside a glass enclosure and a small, uncovered area planted in the middle of a garden that will supply produce to the kitchen. In a statement, Baker describes the upstairs as a “casual, but stylish, complement” to the restaurant.

A raw bar at the new venue will have oysters, crudos, and caviar. Tartines, or open-faced French sandwiches, will come topped with roasted potatoes, marinated goat cheese, or more seafood from the neighborhood purveyors at Ivy City Smokehouse.

Last month, Baker rolled out an a la carte brunch menu to attract customers who might not want to drop $90 to $115 on customizable, multi-course meals. A power outage marred the first service, continuing a string of rotten luck at the site that contributed to two years of construction delays before Gravitas opened last July.

Baker is also constructing European sandwiches for another impending business, the French Exit shop that has a spot reserved in Quarter Market, the still-growing food hall in Ballston.

Washington City Paper first reported the news about the Conservatory opening, noting that Baker expects to eventually get 20 to 50 pounds of produce per week from the urban garden. The glass structure for the space is being custom-built in Alabama, WCP reports.

The Conservatory will be open at night from Thursday through Sunday and will offer pastries, Vigilante coffee, and Teaism tea to a daytime crowd on the weekend afternoons. Neighboring City Winery just introduced regular hours at its own verdant wine garden.

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