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The Riggsby Gets Revived as a Pop-Up for American Classics and To-Go Martinis

Plus, score #IndustryStrong swag to support hospitality workers

The Riggsby pop-up at Alta Strada in Mt. Vernon Triangle includes free chips and green onion dip with every order
The Riggsby pop-up at Alta Strada in Mt. Vernon Triangle includes free chips and green onion dip with every order
The Riggsby [official]
Tierney Plumb is the editor of Eater DC, covering all things food and drink around the nation's capital.

For your Friday bisque fix

The Riggsby, chef Michael Schlow’s retro comfort food restaurant tucked inside the Carlyle Hotel in Dupont, is temporarily turning its lights back on this weekend. Alta Strada, Schlow’s neighborhood spot for pasta and chicken Parm in Mt. Vernon Triangle, is hosting a Riggsby pop-up for takeout and delivery Friday through Sunday from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Highlights from the limited menu include lobster bisque, a pork chop with fennel sausage and hot cherry peppers, pasty chef Alex Levin’s chocolate cake with salted caramel sauce, and $10 kits for vodka martinis or rye Manhattans. Every order comes with potato chips and green onion dip on the house.

Schlow, a James Beard Award-winning chef who splits his time between his businesses here and in Boston, is waiting out the coronavirus pandemic in D.C. He’s kept four local restaurants open for takeout and in-house delivery: Nama sushi, Latin-leaning Tico on 14th Street NW, and Alta Strada locations in D.C. and Fairfax.

In other news...

  • Another restaurant that went dark during the pandemic just announced comeback plans. Via Sophia, the shiny all-day Italian osteria at the renovated Hamilton Hotel, will start takeout service on Monday, April 20, with rigatoni bolognese, pizzas, and cocktails available for contact-free pickup. Browse menus here.
  • Franklin Hall bartender Beth Cormack is selling #IndustryStrong T-shirts, tank tops, tumblers, and hoodies ($18-$40) to support her service industry colleagues during this unprecedented time. Cormack, also a managing partner in a local events company, says all proceeds from #IndustryStrong swag will go towards restaurant relief fund Hook Hall Helps. In other quarantine apparel news, Dupont’s nightclub Heist is selling CDC-recommended masks to support staff.
  • One restaurant in D.C. just announced its permanently demise amidst the coronavirus pandemic. Bareburger, an East Coast patty chain heavily saturated across Manhattan, just pulled the plug on its sole D.C. location in Dupont Circle (1647 20th Street NW).
  • Kith/Kin chef Kwame Onwuachi, who has emerged as a vocal advocate for independent restaurants, posted a snippet of video from a conversation he had with famous drummer and DJ Questlove to his Instagram page. The musician tells the chef, “I have no doubts whatsoever that you are going to rebuild again.”
  • Fairmont Washington’s executive chef Jordi Gallardo would normally be slinging al fresco vats of paella in the West End hotel’s courtyard right now. Instead, he’s made his filling Spanish rice available for takeout every Wednesday this month from noon to 4 p.m. Servings are $10 each — $5 for first responders and medical personnel. This week the hotel’s resident lab, Georgie, dropped off the dish to the nearby firefighter’s station. Place orders for pickup at the hotel (2401 M Street NW).
Diana Kaiser Bulger/Fairmont
  • Bidwell, Union Market’s sit-down pizza place, just announced plans to stop takeout and delivery. but the Bib Gourmand-designated spot is still “growing,” in a way. The space just flipped into a greenhouse, “where we’ve got an epic amount of seedlings growing,” chef John Mooney says. Its wares will be planted atop its aeroponic rooftop garden. Follow progress on the chef’s Instagram account.
During the downturn, Bidwell’s new business model is nurturing seedlings.
Bidwell/official photo