The restaurateur behind Italian darling Lupo Verde is doubling down on the 14th Street NW corridor by inking a deal for the space formerly occupied by sandwich chain Taylor Gourmet.
The new restaurant sliding inside, dubbed Lupo Pizzeria, is expected to open around October following a full refresh of the failed fast-casual sandwich shop.
The pizzeria, just north of Lupo Verde’s original 5-year-old location, won’t compete in the pasta space. Instead, it will bring the neighborhood an all-day spot to wash down pies with beer and wines (1908 14th Street NW).
Blogger Eat DC first reported the news Wednesday. Owner Med Lahlou (Station 4, Lupo Marino, Lupo Verde Osteria) tells Eater to expect “high-end” pizzas alongside Italian street foods with an upscale twist. He hopes the design transports diners to a pie place found in “Rome or Milan,” he says. The 75-seat space “will be completely different and more nice looking,” than its former life as Taylor Gourmet.
The sit-down setup will include a bar, with 100 wines and 30 beers by the bottle. Some of the same Italian street foods found at Lupo Marino at the Wharf will likely star inside the 2,000-square-foot space. Lahlou hopes to serve the growing pool of daytime foot traffic in the neighborhood, so hours will be 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. CBRE broker Lance Marine represented the landlord on the recently closed deal.
Lahlou says he’s also secured a space for a Lupo Pizzeria and Brasserie on Fifth Street NE near Union Market. He’s aiming to open that location by October, too.
The Fifth Street pizzeria will put Lahlou in close competition with Stellina Pizzeria, which just opened in the Union Market District this spring. Stellina chef Matteo Venini and restaurateur Antonio Matarazzo previously worked for years together at Lupo Verde.