La Cosecha, the Union Market district’s anticipated hub for Latin culture and cuisine, has added a fresh crop of tenants that will bring pupusas, coffee sourced from Panama, and innovative cocktails from a top D.C. mixologist into the mix.
The latest trio of tenants will join the sprawling 20,000-square-foot market coming together at 1270 4th Street NE. They include day-to-night eatery Serenata + Zumo, helmed by Colada Shop partners Daniella Senior and mixologist Juan Coronado; a Salvadoran grab-and-go stand from decades-old local brand La Casita; and the first stateside outpost of Panama’s popular coffee shop Café Unido.
Previously announced players on board at La Cosecha — which means “the harvest” in Spanish — include chef Christian Irabién, a native of Mexico who plans to permanently plant his Amparo pop-up in the new market. D.C.’s roving Peruvian Brothers food truck will also open its first standalone location there.
La Cosecha will start opening this summer, with a grand opening slated for the fall. Eventually, the market is expected to be filled out with 14 tenants by late 2020, offering a smorgasbord of dining, retail, entertainment, and communal spaces.
Here’s a look at the latest trio of newly signed tenants, arriving by late summer:
Serenata and Zumo: Colada Shop co-founder Daniella Senior will debut a day-to-night eatery that weaves ingredients and cultures across Latin American countries and the Caribbean. By day, the shop will be called Zumo and will serve fresh juices, smoothies, and toasts starting at 9 a.m. After 4:30 p.m., it will transform into Serenata, offering cocktails and Latin American snacks until midnight (and 1 a.m. on weekends).
“We want to make sure we have the best presentation of what Latin America has to offer,” Senior says. “We are focused more on Latin America as a whole versus one specific country.”
The 22-seat setup will be comprised of a 530-square-foot bar planted in the center of the market. Spanish-styled tiles will line the bar, alongside lots of cement elements. Stools are meant to resemble rocking chairs found on the countryside of the Dominican Republic.
At Serenata, bartenders are expected to double as history professors. The cocktail list won’t pull from the menu at Colada Shop, Senior says.
“Cocktails tell a story beyond the drink in front of you, from the spirit to the cultural significance,” she says. “You are not only having cocktail with us but are learning about Latin America.”
Spirits produced across the multi-country region — like mezcal and rum — will play starring roles in drinks served in funky glassware.
“Always rum — it’s in my blood,” Senior says, adding that herbal ingredients will also be in the mix.
The team is still in the research and development stage for the two-part menu. Senior just returned from Mexico City and San Miguel de Allende, where she gathered firsthand knowledge about making juice.
Earlier this spring, Colada Shop announced plans to open its third location later this fall in the Wharf development on the Southwest Waterfront.
La Casita: This fast-casual take on the traditional pupuseria will offer street foods inspired by those found inside a traditional large open market. The small, 210-square-foot Salvadoran stall will be helmed by chef Iris Veronica Jimenez, whose family entered the D.C. scene in 1984 with a market in Adams Morgan. Other locations have since popped up in Silver Spring, Arlington, Germantown, and Gaithersburg.
“It’s a great fit for us to come back into D.C. — it’s full circle of when my parents started the business in D.C.,” she says.
The La Cosecha location will feature artwork from Salvadoran artists — a common element across La Casita’s regional portfolio. The counter service-only setup will put the pupusa-making process front and center. A variety of pupusas will be stuffed with cheese, pork, beans, spinach, and chicken.
“We have perfected and worked hard on it — it’s a family recipe,” Jimenez says.
Diners can get a taste of the pupusas this Sunday, June 2, at the 8th Annual Sunday Supper dinner at La Cosecha. The supper benefits the James Beard Foundation’s Women’s Entrepreneurial Leadership (WEL) Program.
La Casita, which is targeting an early August opening, is also expected serve ceviches, chicharrones, and El Salvador-inspired sandwiches on fresh baguettes. Booze calls for Salvadoran beers and margaritas made with fresh tamarind juice. La Casita’s popular lineup of licuados, or traditional smoothies made with tropical fruits like mango and papaya native to El Salvador, will also be imported to the market.
A small selection of traditional Salvadoran breakfast dishes built with plantains and eggs will help kick off the day starting at 10 a.m.
Café Unido: This lauded coffee brand out of Panama is opening its first stateside location at La Cosecha. Founders Benito Bermudez and Mario Castrellon, who have eight coffee shops sprinkled throughout Panama, use beans sourced from top farms across the Central American country (that includes Panama Geisha — the highest priced coffee variety in the world).
“This is an exciting time for Panama coffee and its producers as well as the third wave of the coffee movement,” says Bermudez. “We are excited to come to D.C. and join the great group of artists, chefs, and specialty vendors at La Cosecha and continue to celebrate the love, culture and ingredients of Latin America.”
Here’s a snapshot of the six previously announced tenants:
elcielo: Celebrated Colombian chef Juan Manuel Barrientos will open the second U.S. outpost of his gastronomy-focused restaurant at La Cosecha. The 13-year-old original is in Medellín, Colombia. The first stateside location debuted in Miami’s waterfront Brickell neighborhood in 2015.
Amparo: Longtime D.C. local and Oyamel alum Christian Irabién is drawing from family traditions and recipes from his native Chihuahua for his first restaurant in D.C. Amparo’s modern menu will focus on the coastal regions of Mexico, with lots of seafood, produce, and mezcal in the mix. While Amparo will be his first solo project, Irabién helped opened a large and stylish Mexican restaurant in Oakland called Calavera in 2015. His cooking resume also includes working under with chefs José Andrés and Cathal Armstrong.
Ali Pacha: This vegan fine dining destination, which translates to “the plant universe” in the Aymara language, comes from Bolivian chef Sebastian Quiroga. The graduate of Le Cordon Bleu in London has cooked at Astrid & Gaston in Lima and both Relae and Studio in Copenhagen, Quiroga.
Grand Cata: The Shaw wine bar will expand with a second location at the market. Owners and co-founders Pedro J. Rodriguez and Julio Robledo, who hail from Puerto Rico and Chile, respectively, specialize in sustainable grapes sourced from across Latin America. Also expect a wine club, workshops, and private events. Another Shaw wine bar, La Jambe, opened a French-inspired stall nearby in Union Market.
Peruvian Brothers: Giuseppe and Mario Lanzone, the sibling duo behind D.C.’s popular Peruvian Brothers food truck, were born and raised off the coast of Lima. Their first brick-and-mortar location will feature an expanded selection of Peruvian-style sandwiches, empanadas, desserts, and hot sauces.
NOVA BOSSA: Brazil native Carolina Furukrona’s luxury lifestyle destination promotes artisanal, largely female-run brands from the Latin world across art and home décor, bain couture, fashion accessories, handbags, and jewelry.
Eater has learned that Venezuelan chef Federico Tischler’s White Envelope Arepa + Ceviche Bar is no longer coming to the project. It’s unclear why he is out at La Cosecha. In Baltimore he recently flipped his modern arepas bar under the same name into a destination for American street fare.
D.C. just got a restaurant from another Venezuelan chef with the opening of Seven Reasons along 14th Street NW, which has been getting rave reviews since debuting this spring.
Edens’ in-the-works market has gone through several iterations since it was first announced. Food Network star Jose Garces, who was originally expected to spearhead the project, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy last spring.
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- 14th Street’s Buzzing Cuban Cafe Has Ambitious Plans for a Wharf Location [EDC]
- To Washington, with love: Seven Reasons [WaPo]
- R. House’s White Envelope will rebrand as On Top Hot Dogs + Burgers [BBJ]
- Jose Garces Sells His Restaurant Group, Enters Bankruptcy [EDC]