Historic Georgetown pub Martin’s Tavern rejoins D.C.’s dining scene this week, ending a monthlong hiatus spurred by the coronavirus pandemic. Nearby, the Four Seasons hotel will also reboot restaurant operations with a limited selection of dishes from Bourbon Steak and Seasons.
Martin’s revives service Wednesday with takeout and in-house delivery from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Along with to-go pantry products, dishes on the comeback trail include crab cakes, family-style shepherd’s pie, burgers, ahi tuna sandwiches, and other comfort foods that regulars have missed.
The tavern opened in Georgetown during the Great Depression and has been a fixture for 87 years. Fifth-generation owner Lauren Martin says the bar used its recent down time to perform some minor upgrades. It added a new ceiling and floors in the kitchen and fixed some fridges that “hadn’t been touched in 40 years,” she says. Security cameras were also updated.
“We were supposed to do more but we’d rather save the money right now than spend it on renovations,” she says. A big overhaul of the upstairs space, which entails tearing down walls, will have to wait.
“I never thought I’d miss work as much as I do,” Martin says. “I miss employees and customers can’t wait for us to open.”
At the Four Seasons, chef Sebastien Giannini has come aboard after a brief stint at the Watergate. The decision to try daily takeout came out of a trial Easter Sunday brunch that raised over $800 for MedStar Washington Hospital Center.
Meals from the Four Seasons will go up on Tock starting Wednesday. There will be a rotating, three-course option ($39). Bourbon Steak’s 14-ounce ribeye with with creamed spinach and truffle mac and cheese costs $94. There will also be an all-day, a la carte Seasons breakfast menu, and a Seasons Sunday brunch. Part of proceeds will also benefit MedStar.
In other news...
- Chicken + Whiskey (1738 14th Street NW) has partnered with Beam Suntory this week to feed local service industry employees impacted by COVID-19. Up to 200 free meals will be available to workers in need who provide proof of an industry job. They’ll be able to pick from anything that’s regularly priced at $16 or less — like Peruvian rotisserie chicken and Venezuelan sandwiches, salads, and sides — while supplies last.
- The chicken counter is one of four D.C. restaurants partnering with Off Their Plate, Inc., a national grassroots movement that brings back restaurant jobs while feeding frontline workers. Emilie’s, Cork Wine Bar, and the Alibi are also part of its D.C. launch. Affiliated with Jose Andrés’s World Central Kitchen, Off Their Plate has raised more than $2.5 million since its mid-March debut in Boston. Restaurants can sign up here, and donations are accepted here.
- Farm-centric H Street favorite DC Harvest rolls out a limited menu and grocery option for pick-up or delivery Wednesday, with $2 from each order donated to relief group Feed The Fight.
- To celebrate Ramadan, Duke’s Grocery will make halal dinners from Thursday to Sunday nights. The $45 feasts feature a choice of pan roasted halal lamb or vindaloo goat curry, served with five traditional sides like moroccan chickpea soup and spicy carrot salad. Duke’s Grocery is already known for serving Islamic-approved meats year round; its signature burger is made with two halal angus beef patties.
- Michelin-rated Sushi Taro brings back its tonkotsu ramen kit ($17) this week. Order online for pickup on Thursday, April 23.
- Daikaya Group’s Navy Yard ramen shop Hatoba has started offering yakisoba kits. The DIY Japanese stir-fry ($13) comes with step-by-step directions for assembling packages of noodles, sliced pork belly, sliced onions and bean sprouts, shredded cabbage and carrots, sauces, aonori, and pickled ginger. Order online for takeout (300 Tingey Street SE) or delivery.
- Fairfax City restaurants are making use of no-contact robots typically roaming around George Mason University’s campus, reports NBC 4. Each app-enabled bot, equipped with sensors and GPS, makes deliveries within a one-mile radius in under an hour. UBAR Coffee & Açaí Bowls’s owner Tom Vuong says he nicknamed his reliable robot “Tom Tom.”
- Bravo Top Chef season 16 finalist Eric Adjepong makes another appearance on healthy delivery service Territory’s menu this week with a new chermoula chicken with jollof rice dish. The Ghanaian-American chef was formerly quality assurance manager at the Arlington-based meal delivery service. A percentage of proceeds will go to The James Beard Foundation Food and Beverage Industry Relief Fund.