Two and a half years after closing in downtown Silver Spring, Adega Wine Bar will reemerge as Locavino this weekend with a heavy wine list and same chef manning its casual menu.
The 2,500-square-foot reinvented wine bar (8519 Fenton Street, Silver Spring, Maryland) comes from longtime Adega employees Jarrod Jabre and Justin Wallace. Adega closed in early 2017 after nearly 15 years of business.
“We wanted to work together and keep doing what we were doing here,” says Jabre. “People have been wanting us to come back since the day they closed.”
Chef Santos Amaya returned to helm the kitchen, bringing back a familiar lineup of all-day apps, sandwiches like grilled cheese and panini, flatbreads, burgers, hot and cold wraps, pastas, and substantial salads. There’s also odes to Jabre’s Lebanese background this time around, like freshly-fried falafel in pita and salad form and a mezze board built with hummus, tzatziki, and olives. For dessert, there’s local chocolates, mousse, and a chocolate chip cookie bar.
“There’s old favorites with some new things thrown in we wanted to try and some family recipes,” he says.
The wine selection kicks off with about 200 bottles, with plans to grow to over 300, and 14 wines by the glass out of the gate. Shelves are stocked with producers from Virginia, New York, and its home turf (think Maryland’s Old Westminster), as well as small estate producers, family-run wineries, and “wines local to someone,” he says.
The new name stems from the locavore movement, which refers to those who only eat locally sourced or produced food. Locavino wants to encourage guests to drink local, too.
The burger section also shows love for its star liquid offering, with a “Frederick County Cabernet” featuring a wine-marinated patty, local cheddar cheese, pickles and homemade ketchup between potato bread.
D.C.’s iconic half-smoke appears in flatbread form, with smoked beef sausage, herbs, and onions with a chili sauce. Hearty options also include a classic beef bourguignon; eggplant moussaka; and truffle oil mac and cheese.
The 49-seat eclectic space, splashed with wine-inspired red, white, wood, and copper elements, features communal tables and two-tops made from salvaged wine barrels.
“We didn’t want to try to reinvent any wheels. It should look very familiar to people who were Adega customers,” he says, of its cozy vibe.
There’s a newly installed portrait from artist Louis Scotti, a longtime regular during Adega’s days who moved back home to South America.
The owners walk the talk when it comes to going local. Jabre’s lived in the neighborhood for the past 15 years, and Wallace was born in Takoma Park. “This is our home,” says Jabre.
Locavino stocks 50 types of beer on-site, most of which hail from Maryland breweries and producers from surrounding states. There’s four beers on draft to start, including Silver Spring’s Astro Lab Brewing, along with a dozen canned and bottled offerings. The balance is made up of packaged offerings.
There’s a small corkage fee to open for-sale products on-site, and “everything in the store is fair game,” he says, claiming Locavino is the only area wine bar that lets patrons enjoy its retail selections right there.
The wine bar’s reopening as Locavino comes during a huge renaissance of downtown Silver Spring, thanks to Peterson Companies’ $10 million overhaul of the corridor that recently lost Discovery Communications’ headquarters. Locavino’s complex will soon be joined by a massive sequel to NoMa’s adult arcade The Eleanor, complete with six mini bowling lanes, more than a dozen arcade games, multiple outdoor patios, and 20 beers on tap.
The cafe opens daily at 11 a.m., operating until 10 p.m. Monday to Thursday, 11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and 9 p.m. on Sunday.