Swiss chocolate chain Läderach has picked D.C. as one of the first cities in its U.S. expansion. The chocolatier is already advertising an incoming location inside Union Station that’s expected to debut by Valentine’s Day. Along with a chocolate bark counter, customers can expect pralines, airy “MiniMousses,” seasonal collections, and a self-serve carousel showcasing ChocoBijoux bags filled with wrapped chocolate.
Läderach’s “bean-to-bar” line, handcrafted inside twin factories nestled in the Swiss Alps, gets shipped to its 100 retail stores around the globe. At the train station, it will bring on a whopping 100 varieties of chocolate. The nearly 60-year-old brand opened its first stateside store in New York City in 2019. Just this week, it opened a 2,500-square-foot flagship on NYC’s Fifth Avenue, its largest store to date. It features a massive, rotating cocoa bean sculpture designed by precision-obsessed World Champion Chocolatier Elias Läderach, who runs the confectionary empire with his brother, Johannes.
In other news...
- Operational restaurants, cafes, food trucks, and bars can now apply for a piece of D.C.’s $35 million “Restaurant Bridge Fund” pie through Monday, December 28, with 700 eligible establishments awarded $10,000 to $50,000 in grants that can be used for payroll, insurance, rent, and winterization measures.
- West End’s Grillfish and the Pig in Logan Circle will temporarily close this Sunday, December 13, after dinner service. Popular orders will still be available for delivery and takeout through the EatWellDC group’s other restaurants, Commissary and Logan Tavern.
- Foxtrot Market, a tech-savvy convenience chain out of Chicago that stocks stores with hyper-local goods, will open in Georgetown and Mt. Vernon Triangle next March. A new “Up and Comers” competition awards rising DMV makers with marketing support, a spot on Foxtrot’s shelves, and up to $25,000 to grow their business. Big-name judges include D.C. chef Erik Bruner-Yang and Jeni Britton Bauer, of Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams.
- D.C. native and former NFL agent Ricardo Young will import his flashy Miami restaurant and lounge Victory to D.C. by January 1. Victory will slide into the 14th and U Street NW space most recently housed short-lived Bar Lorea and add a retractable rooftop deck up top. Its Wynwood menu includes Thai chili jerk wings, lobster fried rice, collard greens, and hookah service.
- Shaw’s dearly missed Dino’s Grotto is making comeback (sort of) for the holidays. Email owner Dean Gold (firstname.lastname@example.org) to buy his beloved wild boar and puttanesca sauces, duck salt, za’atar spices, and other ingredients he used to build his dishes.