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Parachute Pizza Swoops Into Union Market — And More Openings

A roundup of new restaurants around D.C.

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Parachute Pizza offers pies by the slice or whole.
Sam Sanchez
Tierney Plumb is the editor of Eater DC, covering all things food and drink around the nation's capital.

Despite lingering challenges posed by the pandemic, lots of exciting dining options continue to pop up all over town. Here’s a running list of recent openings. Other new and notable restaurants are featured here. For the buzziest new bars around town, go here.

Know of a spot that should be on this list? Send us a tip by emailing

November 2023

UNION MARKET—Sicilian pie project Parachute Pizza finally landed in Union Market on Tuesday, November 21. The independent venture comes from the team behind Brookland’s French wine bar Primrose (Sebastian Zutant, Erin Im, and Oliver Friendly). The trio share a love for the rectangular Italian pie sporting a “crispy, olive-oily-yet-airy crust, a thicker tomato sauce, and a good layer of delicious mozzarella cheese,” says Friendly, who also runs Eat & Smile Catering. Parachute sits in the back of the food hall where Red Apron once sat, and is one of the few vendors with a dedicated sit-down area. Seven opening varieties swing from classic (pepperoni and pickled chilis) to unique (cacio e pepe), with plans to change toppings seasonally. Parachute Pizza offers lunch and dinner daily for dine-in and grab-and-go service starting at 11 a.m. 1309 5th Street NE

Neon-lit aqua signage and playful logos lead the way to Parachute Pizza.
Sam Sanchez

PENN QUARTER—NYC’s fast-growing French bakery and cafe maman, with outposts in Dupont Circle, Georgetown, and Union Market, adds a fourth D.C. location on Tuesday, November 28. Nutty chocolate chip cookies and croque-‘“maman” favorites join D.C.-specific items like the Crogel and Youky’s club sandwich. The first 100 guests on opening day get maman goodie bags with merch from nearby businesses and free cookies all day, plus a cookbook signing with founder Elisa Marshall at noon. Weekday hours are 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. and weekends from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. 750 9th Street NW

UNION MARKET—Sicilian pie project Parachute Pizza landed in Union Market’s back food hall stall on Tuesday, November 21. Parachute is an independent venture from the team behind Brookland’s French wine bar Primrose (Sebastian Zutant, Erin Im, and Oliver Friendly), who all share a love for rectangular Italian pies. “Crispy, olive-oily-yet-airy crust, a thicker tomato sauce, and a good layer of delicious mozzarella cheese,” says Friendly, who also runs Eat & Smile Catering. Expect four to six varieties at a time topped with classic and seasonal ingredients, plus a gluten-free option. The menu also carves out room for oysters (filling a hole left behind by Rappahannock), plus salads, garlic knots, local beers, and wines. Parachute Pizza offers lunch and dinner daily for dine-in and grab-and-go service.

SHAW—Philip Ajaj and Pierre Stone, the culinary duo behind Jamaican restaurant Just Jerk in Lanham, Maryland, just brought a new falafel fixture to the nightlife nexus of 9th and U Street NW. Situated across from the 9:30 Club and Atlantis (in the old Andy’s Pizza space), Falafel Brothers features four types of falafel wraps including the “Scott’s Amsterdam” as an homage to the late D.C. falafelshop founder. The menu also specializes in fluffy Lebanese flatbreads (manakish) topped with za’atar spice, toum, sesame seeds, or babaganoush and crispy falafel balls; sides like hummus and fries; and a build-your-own option with an array of sauces and toppings to choose from. Daily hours are Monday to Thursday (4 p.m. to 12:30 a.m.); Friday and Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 2 a.m.; and Sunday from noon to 12:30 a.m. 2016 9th Street NW

Wraps and fries at Falafel Brothers.
Mykl Wu

UPPER NORTHWEST—Chef/owner Rick Allison’s DMV-wide raw bar and seafood house King Street Oyster Bar opened its fifth location in the buzzy City Ridge complex in early November. Along with a rotating selection of East and West Coast oysters, the catch-all menu includes lobster rolls, shrimp po’ boys, fish tacos, clam chowder, salads, and burgers. The nautical-styled setup offers daily happy hour at the bar (3 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.) featuring $1.75 oysters, $9 cocktails, and discounted apps. City Ridge’s dining options will soon grow with the arrival of Taco Bamba. 7 Ridge Square NW

King Street Oyster Bar’s diverse menu.
Leading DC
Omakase@Barracks Row opened Thursday, November 9.
Icy Yang

CAPITOL HILL—Sushi chef Ricky Wang puts his knife skills to work at his sleek new Omakase@Barracks Row tasting room. The Minibar and Sushi Nakazawa alum co-owns the two-level venture with Chris Zhu (Han Palace, China Garden, Ginza, and Live K). The 21-course menu, which features sushi, hand rolls, and specialties, runs $180 per person. Omakase@Barracks Row sits on the second and third floors above Han Palace, with 14 seats across each. Small bites are followed by a nigiri tasting of 15-plus pieces of sushi; think otoro and other rare delicacies like Japanese barracuda and uni from Rishiri Island in Northern Japan. Wang pays special attention to the rice, blending multiple kinds of koshihikari rice from Japan. Highlights include smoked corn and amaebi chawanmushi, toro tuna hand rolls, and sake katsu ice cream for dessert. Hours are Wednesday to Sunday with seatings at 5:30 p.m. and 8:15 p.m. Reservations required via Resy. 522 8th Street SE

Bonchon opens its first ghost kitchen in Ivy City this week.

IVY CITY—Bonchon, the 20-year-old Korean chicken chain known for its hand-battered and double-fried wings, fries, and sauces, picked D.C. as the site of its first ghost kitchen. The setup in Ivy City Food Works opens Wednesday, November 15 with online ordering, delivery, and pickup. Guests can use code NOWOPEN for free delivery for the first two weeks. “We have quite a large Bonchon following here in D.C. and we’re determined to keep up with their excitement and demand,” says local owner Thomas Heou. Bonchon’s standalone D.C. location sits in Navy Yard. 2000-2018 5th Street NE

NORTHEAST—Chef Kevin Tien’s Bryant Street Market stall Doki Doki BBQ is now open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. The latest culinary venture from the chefs behind Moon Rabbit (Tien, Judy Beltrano, and Susan Bae) specializes in grilled and smoked meats with Asian influences. Tien’s famed fiery sandwiches from his local Hot Lola’s Chicken enterprise are also available on-site. 670 Rhode Island Avenue NE

NORTHEAST—The Halal Guys opened in Union Station’s lower-level food court, ready to serve the estimated 90,000 travelers making their way through this historic transit hub daily. Its first corporate-owned location outside of New York offers American halal favorites like platters and sandwiches filled with falafel, chicken or beef gyro, and (baklava) cheesecake for dessert. Open 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. 50 Massachusetts Avenue NE

October 2023

DUPONT—Six years after debuting at D.C. farmers markets, followed up by a few Streets Market kiosks, Spot of Tea finally has a standalone home to call its own. Dupont’s chic new bubble tea cafe, complete with an upstairs seating area and sleek ceramic-tiled look, offers counter service for vibrant oat milk, boba, and fruit teas in flavors like hibiscus mango and blue jasmine. Ube vanilla lattes and yuzu espresso tonics will eventually be joined a full coffee program and light bites like onigiri (rice balls). Spot of Tea co-owner Dillon Chai draws inspiration from his favorite “after-school boba hangouts” while growing up in Shanghai. Spot of Tea hosts a three-day opening celebration on Friday, October 21 to Sunday, October 23 with BYGO drinks during operational hours (11 a.m. to 7 p.m.). 2101 P Street NW

A wall of refrigerated wines at Foxtrot

LOGAN CIRCLE—High-tech grocer Foxtrot opens its sixth area location on Wednesday, October 18, bringing the Northwest neighborhood a new all-day cafe stocked with local products like Nightingale ice cream, Ceremony Coffee, Anchor Beer, Little Sesame hummus, and more. Tote bags filled with Foxtrot freebies will be handed out on opening day to customers paying with the app, along with $5 pours of wines from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. 1341 14th Street NW

UPPER NORTHWEST—Jinya Ramen Bar joined the rapidly growing neighborhood of the Parks at Walter Reed on Monday, October 16 — marking its second D.C. location and sixth in the area. Bowls of flavorful noodles in thick, rich broth can be augmented with toppings like tender pork chashu to shrimp wonton, and tapas and beers are also available. The chain’s 57th restaurant serves guests from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. 1155 Dahlia Street NW

GEORGETOWN—Chef Matt Baker’s beloved downtown and Ivy City cafe Baker’s Daughter expanded to Georgetown on Monday, October 9, with a 1,600-square-foot edition serving every meal of the day. The Hoya sandwich, a nod to nearby Georgetown University, packs ham, turkey, bacon, white cheddar, arugula, tomato, and herb aioli on a toasted croissant. A croque-madame croissant comes with an egg for $1 extra. 1065 Wisconsin Avenue NW

WOODLEY PARK—Elsa Ethiopian Kitchen opened in the former Medaterra space, with a menu full of spicy meat tibs and vegetarian combos. Open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. 2614 Connecticut Avenue NW

MCLEAN—Peter Chang, the acclaimed Sichuan flavor master behind a growing culinary empire across Maryland, Virginia, and Connecticut, brought his high-volume namesake restaurant to Northern Virginia on Thursday, October 12. Family-friendly Peter Chang McLean, which serves familiar Chinese food favorites like dim sum and his destination Peking duck, will be joined by two more suburbia openings in 2024 (Gaithersburg, Maryland and Herndon, Virginia). 6715 Lowell Ave, McLean, Virginia

The massive new Blackwall Barn & Lodge features six distinct dining spaces.
Blackwall Barn & Lodge

COLUMBIA, MARYLAND—Blackwall Barn & Lodge debuted its second location in the Merriweather District in downtown Columbia. The 12,000-square-foot restaurant framed in wood showcases Blackwall hits like flaming crab dip, red brick chicken, braised duck ragu pasta, tequila-based EspresSol Martini, and Titan’s Massive Mary. Mid-Atlantic restaurant group Titan Hospitality also runs Blackwall Hitch. 6000 Merriweather Drive, Columbia, Maryland

September 2023

DOWNTOWN—Hotel Washington (formerly the W) has a lobby-level restaurant again with the opening of Fireclay. Chef de cuisine Israel Lopez-Albarracin, an alum of Ben’s Next Door and iPic Theater, mans an Argentine-style grill and two stone ovens to prepare dishes like wood-grilled wagyu New York strip steak alongside clarified butter steak fries and charred broccolini, ash-crusted yellowfin tuna crudo, and a bone-in pork chop. Starters include a (navel and blood) orange duet salad dolloped with burrata. The bar showcases cocktails like a smoked Old Fashioned starring jerk-infused Bacardi Diez and a pinot noir reduction and an Amalfi Rickey made with charred rosemary. The 80-seat newcomer joins the Patio, Lobby Bar, and Vue Rooftop overlooking the White House. Open Tuesday through Saturday from 5 to 10 p.m. 515 15th Street NW

The NoMa space got a sleek white refresh, with bagged beans available near checkout.
Sarah Galaviz/Simona Cafe

NOMA—The soaring Northeast space that most recently housed gadgets-galore Sweet Science Coffee flips into Simona Cafe on Friday, September 22. The chic cafe debuted in Arlington last year and quickly became an all-day neighborhood favorite for seasonal drinks and drip, flat whites, chai lattes, sandwiches built on homemade focaccia, charcuterie boards, and a curated selection of wine and beer. For its second act, Simona Cafe brings the same menu over to its new plant-filled D.C. digs with plans to apply for a liquor license soon. The coffee program mostly relies on beans from Falls Church’s Rare Bird, plus rotating appearances from guest roasters like Richmond’s Recluse Coffee. 35 N Street NE

Blank Street Coffee’s newest D.C. digs.
Blank Street Coffee

GEORGETOWN—Brooklyn-born Blank Street Coffee pushed play on its Georgetown locale on Saturday, September 16. The high-tech coffee chain fueled on private equity dollars and high-volume espresso machines opens with pistachio lattes and seasonal shaken pumpkin spice cold brew, plus baked goods like savory and sweet croissants, quiche, muffins, focaccia, and banana bread. Try the concentrated, 1.5-ounce version of Blank Street’s cold brew, made to mimic a silky espresso shot with a higher caffeine content. The NYC import’s inaugural D.C. locations debuted in Dupont and Logan Circle a year ago, and the brand has ambitious plans to balloon to 10 area stores. The 700-square-foot store opens on 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and weekends starting at 8 a.m. 3201 Prospect Street NW

NAVY YARD—Situated within Side Door pizza, fledgling coffee shop and burrito bar Earlybird opens with breakfast tacos, assorted pastries, espresso drinks, and creative lattes. Sit and stay in the adjoining restaurant (with free WiFi) on weekdays. Open 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on weekends and 7 a.m. to noon on Wednesday to Friday. 909 New Jersey Avenue SE

DOWNTOWN—Around since 2003, Coffee Republic debuted its anticipated flagship location at Metro Center on Tuesday, September 19. Beans roasted in-house create a long list of coffee drinks, joined by a lineup of freshly baked pastries, sandwiches, and snacks. Other area locations sit in Rockville and Georgetown. 601 13th Street NW

Wiseguy Pizza opens its fifth area location in Westfield Wheaton.
Wiseguy Pizza

SILVER SPRING—Wiseguy Pizza brings Westfield Wheaton shoppers its New York-style slices on Wednesday, September 20. Thompson Hospitality’s fifth Wiseguy Pizza — and first inside a mall — continues to build pies with ingredients like California tomatoes, all-natural cheese from Wisconsin, virgin olive oil, and Parmigiano-Reggiano from Italy. Familiar pies join new options like Korean chicken and paneer tikka. To celebrate the opening in the second-level food court, Wiseguy Pizza will give away 500 free slices on October 3 from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. 11160 Veirs Mill Road, Wheaton, Maryland

COLLEGE PARK—Chick-fil-A’s second edition of its experimental ghost kitchen Little Blue Menu debuts in College Park on Thursday, September 14. Born in Nashville in 2021, the digital restaurant situated in a former Applebee’s will serve Chick-fil-A’s core menu alongside bone-in wings (smoked, roasted or fried), burgers, onion rings, sweet potato tots, and Brussels sprouts with the option to add Maryland favorite Old Bay as a sauce or seasoning. Order via its app for pickup and delivery within a 10-mile radius using hybrid electric cars, plus takeout seating outside under blue umbrellas. 7242 Baltimore Avenue, College Park, Maryland

Captain Cookie’s Cleveland Park art (by Capital Murals) fits its ”save the world, one cookie at time” mantra.
Captain Cookie

CLEVELAND PARK—Captain Cookie & the Milkman owners Kirk and Juliann Francis opened their long-awaited storefront in Cleveland Park on Saturday, September 9. To mark the start of fall, new s’mores cookies feature toasted graham crackers, chewy marshmallows, and milk chocolate. Cookies comes in flavors like (vegan) chocolate chip, snickerdoodle, double chocolate, confetti, peanut butter, and more. Build-your-own ice cream sandwiches star Ice Cream Jubilee and South Mountain Creamery between two cookies. Hours run from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. Fast-growing Captain Cookie also has locations in Foggy Bottom, Brookland, Eastern Market, and Arlington. 3411 Connecticut Avenue NW

NAVY YARD—After a long hiatus, chef Michael Rafidi’s Levantine cafe Yellow rebooted its original Navy Yard location on Saturday, September 9. The weekend-only cafe serves urfathing bagels, baklava kouign amanns, and halva honey lattes from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. 1346 4th Street SE

August 2023

VIENNA, VIRGINIA—Dave’s Hot Chicken, the wildly popular, Nashville-style hot chicken chain from LA that counts rapper Drake and actor Samuel L. Jackson as investors, makes its Virginia debut in Vienna on Friday, August 25. The company’s chicken is brined and then fried, and ranges in seven spice levels that tick up from “no spice” all the way to “reaper.” Also on the menu: cheese fries, mac and cheese, sodas, and shakes in chocolate, strawberry or vanilla flavors. The fast-growing franchise made its D.C. area debut in Columbia Heights back in March. Vienna hours kick off daily at 11 a.m. and until 10 p.m. Sunday to Thursday and 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. 8397 Leesburg Pike, Vienna, Virginia

Soul Rebel slings all sorts of toasts, juices, and smoothies.
TKC Food Hall

VIENNA, VIRGINIA—The Kitchen Collective, also known as TKC Food Hall, celebrates a grand opening on Friday, August 25 with $20 gift cards for the first 50 customers. The full lineup of virtual vendors includes:

  • Soul Rebel: Acai bowls, superfood smoothies, salads, toasts, wraps, grain bowls, cold pressed juices, and more.
  • Franki’s: Cookies and brownies baked fresh daily.
  • Yasmine: The Lebanese kebab shop born in Union Market serves sandwiches, grilled marinated meats, and herb-packed falafel dressed with spreads like labne, hummus, and toum.
  • Pizza Serata: Sicilian-influences dishes like stracciatella, focaccia bread made with dough from Virginia’s Wades Mills, and pan pizzas topped with homemade sauces.

Coming soon: El Oso, San Tokki, and Lucky Danger. Open 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily with ordering via delivery or curbside pickup. 8045 Leesburg Pike, Vienna, Virginia

PETWORTH—The team behind Al Volo brings Upshur Street a new Italian restaurant called San Matteo. The menu kicks off with beef carpaccio, arancini, fritto misto, followed by homemade pastas like cacio e pepe, veal ragu, lasagna, and mains like whole branzino and bone-in New York steaks. The bar slings plenty of European wines by the glass and bottle, spritzes, and grappa cocktails. 819 Upshur Street NW

LEESBURG, VIRGINIA—New York favorite Anchor Bar, known as the “home of the original Buffalo wing,” touched down in the D.C. area this month at the Village at Leesburg shopping center. Along with plenty of wings and pub grub, find 24 beers on tap and many more by the bottle or can. Anchor Bar plans to air lots of sports across its 45 TVs and is equipped with the NFL Sunday Ticket. The Leesburg locale is the first of several Anchor Bars opening in Northern Virginia over the next few years. 1609 Village Market Boulevard, Leesburg, Virginia

Meats and veggies are cooked on interactive tabletops at POT Korean BBQ and Hot Pot.
POT Korean BBQ and Hot Pot

LAUREL, MARYLAND—KPOT Korean BBQ and Hot Pot open its fourth area all-you-can-eat outpost on Wednesday, August 9. Situated in Laurel Shopping Center, the 10,000-square-foot local invites communal tables to choose from eight soup bases and a variety of barbecued meats, seafood, and sides. Proteins like Korean favorite galbi short ribs, pork cheek, prime brisket, and enoki mushrooms join veggie add-ons and noodles like udon, ramen, vermicelli, or white rice. Hot apps include chicken wings and ginger-scallion crab. Local franchisee Joon Hyun was the longtime manager at its Rockville location. The nationwide chain’s sprawling new location in Prince George’s County has room for 300 guests, including 20 at its full-service bar. Open daily for lunch and dinner service until as late as midnight on weekends, with happy hour coming soon. AYCE hot pot or barbecue options start at $18.99 per person. 351 Montrose Avenue, Laurel, Maryland

RIVERDALE PARK, MARYLAND—Hot Lola’s, chef Kevin Tien’s Nashville-hot chicken eatery with a Sichuan twist, breaks into Maryland with a new outpost inside Le Fantome. Hot Lola’s, one of three dine-in stalls across the international food hall, offers a selection of fried chicken sandwiches or wings and sides like waffle fries, coleslaw, or corn salad. The 2023 RAMW chef of the year prepares his starring fried chicken sandwich in six varying levels of spice, topped with “comeback” sauce, pickles, and slaw. Handhelds ($12 each) also include a Taj Mahawt (yuzu aioli, curry dust, hot honey) and Seoul Hot with mayo and Gojujang. The menu is available for dine-in, pickup and delivery from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. daily. Hot Lola’s also maintains locations in Ballston, Rosslyn, and Alexandria. 4501 Woodberry Street, Riverdale Park, Maryland

Los Cinco Tacos tops all tortillas with cilantro, white onion, mild salsa roja, and guacamole salsa.

SHAW—Capo Italian Deli’s flagship adds a cute late-night taco shop next door on Friday, August 4. Los Cinco Tacos comes from Jose Candelero, Capo’s longtime director of kitchen operations who grew up in Veracruz, Mexico. Mexican street foods rely on recipes passed down from his grandmother, with four permanent tacos (steak, chicken, adobada pork, grilled cactus) joining a rotating special each week. Available to-go or dine-in at the counter ($4) each or for delivery via Uber Eats ($5), with chips and homemade guacamole ($4.25) and Mexican soft drinks. Los Cinco Tacos joins an already competitive taco scene in Shaw, which includes Rito Loco, El Rey, and Taqueria Xochi. Hours are Thursday 3 p.m. to 10 p.m.; Friday 1 p.m. to 3 a.m.; Saturday 1 p.m. to 3 a.m.; and Sunday 1 p.m. to 10 p.m. 711 Florida Avenue NW

July 2023

Love, Makoto’s new fast-casual offerings include ramen, sushi rolls, fried chicken sandwiches, and salads.
Love, Makoto

DOWNTOWN—Love, Makoto, the massive Japanese food hall from renowned chef Makoto Okuwa, debuted its fast-casual component on Tuesday, July 25. Opening offerings include a kale soba noodle salad; three fried chicken sandwiches (spicy, topped with egg, or teriyaki glazed) on homemade buns; sushi (yuzu salmon and avocado or shrimp tempura rolls); and ramen swimming in shio, miso, spicy miso, or veggie broths. Another pays homage to Okuwa’s hometown of Nagoya, known for its super spicy, Taiwanese-style ramen made with ground beef and pork. Order on-site or ahead online, with dishes ranging from $13-$19. Local roaster Grace Street Coffee fuels the espresso program. Hours are 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday to start. Coming soon: a morning Japanese bakery with mochi donuts and soft serve, plus savory additions like dumplings and curries. Chef David Deshaies and restaurateur Eric Eden (L’Ardente and Unconventional Diner) are partners on the 20,000-square-foot project, which initially opened in May with three full-service restaurants: Dear Sushi, Beloved BBQ, and Hiya Izakaya. 200 Massachusetts Avenue NW

White House Sandwiches operates out of Lincoln Restaurant.
White House Sandwiches

DOWNTOWN—Lincoln Restaurant just added a ghost kitchen called White House Sandwiches that specializes in subs, hoagies, cheesesteaks, and other handhelds influenced by owner Alan Popovsky’s Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey roots. Open Tuesday through Sunday during regular restaurant hours; order pickup or delivery through third-party apps or White House Sandwiches’ website. 1110 Vermont Avenue NW

ARLINGTON—Local chain Z-Burger zoomed into National Landing in July with a fast-casual menu full of burgers, fries, and milkshakes. 509 23rd Street South, Arlington, Virginia

Shakers relies on this red contraption to make section of “shaker” cocktails behind the bar, which helped inspire the name.

SHAW—The owners of Shaw’s LGBTQ+ bar Dirty Goose double down on the Northwest neighborhood with the Friday, July 21 opening of a bigger bar called Shakers. Popular dive Whitlow’s DC, which relocated a block away last month, supplies a short food menu full of fried chicken tenders, smash burgers, smoked wings, fried pickles, and Reubens. Shakers built out a new stage to host both drag shows and panels on various topics, with the fist discussion covering the fight against anti-drag legislation. Owners Justin Parker and Daniel Honeycutt envision Shakers to be a “nightlife hotspot on weekends and a neighborhood community space” during the week. Look for happy hour on the back patio and frequent family night activations. Shakers makes use of the bar’s extensive draft system to pour beers and cocktails on tap. Weekday hours start at 5 p.m. and weekends at 2 p.m. 2012 Ninth Street NW

Meanwhile, the newly relocated Whitlow’s (901 U Street NW) is hosting a bingo fundraiser for D.C. Central Kitchen on Thursday, July 20 (6 p.m. to 9 p.m.)

ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA—National Landing’s month-old Mah-Ze-Dahr Bakery reboots as Mah-Ze-Dahr Cafe on Thursday, July 20, introducing every meal of the day — a first for the decade-old brand out of NYC — in preparation for the incoming influx of Amazon HQ2 workers nearby. In addition to its premiere pastries, the all-day venture in partnership with D.C.’s Knead Hospitality + Design adds items like smoked salmon-filled croissants, eggy buttermilk biscuit sandwiches, bread pudding French toast, salads topped with vegetables, turkey, Gruyère, and croissant croutons, a curried chicken salad sandwich made with vadouvan curry powder and green grapes on whole wheat, and steak frites. The addition of beer and wine caters to happy hour and dinner crowds. Weekday breakfast is served 7 a.m. to 11 a.m., weekend brunch is 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and the all-day menu rolls from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. 1550 Crystal Drive, Arlington, Virginia

Mah-Ze-Dahr Cafe adds an all-day menu starting Thursday, July 20.
Nina Palazzolo
Mah-Ze-Dahr Cafe sits 36 inside and 55 on a patio.
Rey Lopez for Mah-Ze-Dahr

June 2023

CHEVY CHASE—The Charmery, Baltimore’s decade-old ice cream brand with a huge following, opens its first D.C. area store in the Chevy Chase Lake development on Friday, June 23. Husband-wife team David and Laura Alima send out seasonal (and seven constant) flavors, plus dairy-free offerings made with a sorbet and coconut milk base. Cult creations include Old Bay caramel, saffron olive oil, sugary “Saturday Morning Cartoons” (cereal ice cream and marshmallows), and savory “Cheese and Crackers” (cheddar cheese ice cream with Ritz cracker pieces). The Charmery is also known for its one-off collabs with musicians, athletes, and artists, with scoop sales donated to local nonprofits (look for a themed F. Scott Fitzegerald flavor for Chevy Chase). The Baltimore original joins three other Maryland locales in Towson, Columbia, and the Union Collective. 8551 Connecticut Avenue, Chevy Chase, Maryland

Colorful offerings from Seoulspice.
Scott Suchman

NAVY YARD—Fast-casual Korean chain Seoulspice opens its seventh area location on Tuesday, June 20. The gluten-free empire serves rice bowls, gimbap burritos (Korritos), japchae noodle bowls, and salads, using original recipes from owner Eric Shin’s family. Seoulspice will give away one free entree bowl to each in-store customer on opening day (while supplies last) from 11 a.m. and 10 p.m. 1251 First Street SE

TYSONS CORNER—High-end Iranian restaurant Joon opened in Tysons on Tuesday, June 13, with a menu showcasing seafood from the Caspian Sea and Persian Gulf along with family-style orders of dry-aged duck, lamb shoulder, and whole rotisserie chicken stuffed with prunes, apples, and apricots. Joon comes from world-renowned Persian cookbook author and chef Najmieh Batmanglij and Maydan alum Christopher Morgan (Bammy’s, Jasmine, Little Chicken). The 200-seat newcomer pairs Persian staples like rice and kebabs with Iranian wines and regional delicacies like pistachio soup and fried sardines. 8045 Leesburg Pike, Tysons, Virginia

Complimentary lavash served fresh from a stone oven joins an array of dips and spreads at Joon.

PENN QUARTER—Nando’s PERi-PERi, the beloved South African chain known for its fiery, flame-grilled chicken marinated for 24 hours, unveiled a new 3,100-square-foot flagship filled with artwork, earthy textures, and vibrant colors. The D.C. original—and first Nando’s in the states—recently closed nearby on 7th Street NW to make way for the new 82-seat flagship in the former Spy Museum. “After fifteen years, it’s time for a serious upgrade,” says Nando’s PERi-PERi CEO John Fisher, in a statement. Whole- or half-chicken and wing platters join salads and bowls, sandwiches, wraps, pitas, and sides like crispy Brussels sprouts, mashed peas, and mac and cheese. Founded in Johannesburg 35 years ago, the do-good brand that benefits smaller South African farmers has locations all over the globe. There’s 50 U.S. locations across the DMV and Chicago, with a Texas expansion coming soon. Open for dine-in and takeout from 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily. 836 F Street NW

GEORGETOWN—District Doughnut debuted its fourth D.C. location on Friday, June 9, in the iconic M Street NW hut that housed the original Sweetgreen back in the day. Doughnuts made daily come in flavors like Nutella s’mores, vanilla bean, blueberry or chocolate cake batter, and Key Lime pie. Other shops sit in Barracks Row, Union Market, and the Wharf. 3333 M Street NW

Hi/Fi Tex-Mex BBQ brings a backyard party to Del Ray’s Evening Star Café.
John Rorapaugh for LeadingDC
The shaded beer garden-styled setup features bar and table spaces surrounded by eight cabanas.
John Rorapaugh for LeadingDC

DEL RAY—Neighborhood Restaurant Group (NRG) just turned the patio behind its Evening Star Café into a summery new spot called Hi/Fi Tex-Mex BBQ. Chef Nate Anda puts offset and reverse-flow smokers to work to prepare Texas and Carolina-style meats, presented on platters alongside homemade sides and sauces. Slow-cooked meats also help assemble a section of tacos, fajitas, and nachos. Beverage director Greg Engert curates a list of 25 beers and ciders on tap at a time, plus chilled wines and draft and frozen cocktails like margaritas. Open Wednesdays to Fridays from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. and weekends starting at noon, with weekly live music in the works. 2000 Mt. Vernon Avenue, Alexandria, Virginia

CHINATOWN—The Northwest neighborhood just scored a trio of new fast-casual options in one fell swoop. Popville points out fresh openings from Bonkers’ Chinese Burger in the old Little Sesame space (736 6th Street NW); the activation of Luna Hall (formerly Vapiano) with debut vendor Kung Fu Tea (625 H Street NW); and 90 Second Pizza with quick-serve Neapolitan pies (708 7th Street NW).

Foxtrot also offers catering capabilities.
Foxtrot/official photo

NAVY YARD—High-tech convenience store and all-day cafe Foxtrot opens its eighth area location in Navy Yard on Thursday, June 1. Opening day festivities includes free cold brew and tote bags. The 3,760-square-foot location wrapped in colorful murals offers seasonal coffee drinks, smoothies, breakfast tacos, salads, bowls, grab-and-go meals, and a curated crop of beers and wine for in-store purchase, pickup, and delivery through its app. Foxtrot showcases some 50 local purveyors, including Nightingale ice cream, Ceremony Coffee, Anchor Beer, and Little Sesame hummus. The Chicago-born brand that made its D.C. debut in 2021 is also headed to The Yards Marina along with Maman and Playa Bowls. 1275 New Jersey Avenue SE

May 2023

A5 Japanese wagyu kalibi at Gyusan.

BALLSTON—Gyusan, a 105-seat destination for high-end Japanese barbecue, sushi, and cocktails, debuted in Ballston in May. Saddle up to one of 19 tabletop grills to cook a variety of meats, seafood, poultry, pork, and vegetables. The star of the show is A5 wagyu directly imported from the Miyazaki region of Japan. Sushi chef Sam Chen’s specialty rolls include the Flaming Finale (spicy bluefin tuna, avocado, salmon, yellowtail, truffle sauce, and red tobiko) and the luxe Ocean Treasure topped with uni, caviar and fried shiso. Standout starters include butter miso clams and kanpachi jalapeno with baby yellowtail and yuzu dressing. More Gyusan locations are planned for the near future. 4300 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Virginia

MULTIPLE LOCATIONS—Boston-born Tatte Bakery & Cafe opened in Farragut Square’s old Park Place Gourmet with its familiar lineup of breads, sandwiches, salads, and glassy counter stocked with pretty pastries (1634 I Street NW). The big new location wrapped in white subway tiles will be joined by an additional Northwest D.C. store at 14th and W, opening Wednesday, May 31. That makes 10 Tattes across the DMV.

GEORGETOWN—Homegrown carb shop Cafe Con Bagel debuted in the Wisconsin Avenue NW space that housed short-lived chocolate store Petite Soeur. Along with savory BLT or chorizo bagel sandwiches, sweet options include a blueberry bagel slathered with cookies and cream. There’s also Bolivian coffee, vegan doughnuts, and empanadas served 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily. 1332 Wisconsin Avenue NW

FALLS CHURCH—Kyo Matcha, the fast-growing chain obsessed with all things matcha, opened its latest area location in Falls Church, Virginia. The powdered green tea makes its way into lattes, soft serve, crepe layer cakes, mochi, and tiramisu. 920 W Broad Street, Falls Church, Virginia

SIXTEENTH STREET HEIGHTS—D.C.’s small-batch roaster Zeke’s Coffee swings open its latest location in Uptown on Saturday, May 13, adding to its collection of downtown and Northeast cafes. 4602 14th Street NW

Since its start in 2008, the brand has ballooned to over 40 scoops shops nationwide.
Van Leeuwen

GEORGETOWN—NYC’s cult ice cream company Van Leeuwen opens its second D.C. location on Thursday, May 11. Georgetown’s new pastel-hued shop serves 30 dairy (and vegan) flavors like Honeycomb, Earl Grey tea, Sicilian pistachio, and Marionberry Cheesecake. On opening day, find $1 scoops from noon to 2 p.m. and free tote bags for the first 100 guests in line. The brand partnered with beloved Georgetown bakery Baked & Wired to create a limited-edition Dirty Chai Cupcake flavor for its D.C. stores. The brand broke into the market with a March opening in Union Market district, and a third area scoops shop is en route to Adams Morgan in a few weeks. 3245 Prospect Street NW

CAPITOL HILL—Akeno Sushi Bar & Thai Restaurant opened this month on Barracks Row in the space most recently occupied by Nooshi. Co-owner Eakachai (Sean) Promsiri, who’s originally from Thailand, opened the original Akeno in Annandale’s Pinecrest Plaza in 2021. Colorful lychee cocktails, beers, and wine join an expansive menu full of ramen, soups, spring rolls, gyoza, rice bowls, nigiri, rolls, stir-fried noodles and fried rice entrees. The stylish setup decked out with pink rose buds, Japanese murals, and soft seating includes an outdoor patio deck. 524 8th Street SE

Akeno means “sunrise” in Japanese.
Ken Johnson/City Grid
Akeno features lots of florals, neon signage, and artwork.
Ken Johnson/City Grid

ANACOSTIA—Southeast Restaurant Group brought its award-winning barbecue to Anacostia with the opening of its second DCity Smokehouse on Saturday, May 6. The follow-up from the Shaw original serves its familiar lineup of half-smoke sausages, wings, meaty family platters, sides, and a la carte portions of its smoked brisket, pulled pork, rib tips, and more. 1301 Good Hope Road SE

GEORGETOWN—Whiskey tasting room and cocktail bar Fountain Inn adds daytime hours for the first time with the debut of TFI Café on Wednesday, May 3. The new on-site cafe, open Wednesday to Sunday from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., serves coffee from D.C. roaster Small Planes, teas, lavender-espresso tonics, and pastries from Fresh Baguette. Specialty hot-or-cold lattes named for its gallery and home decor neighbors include “The Addison” (non-alcoholic bourbon, cinnamon and sugar) and “The Zoe” with basil and habanero. Booze enters the mix after 11 a.m. with mimosas, Pimm’s Cups, and Irish coffees. 1659 Wisconsin Avenue NW

April 2023

Dig’s debut D.C. digs sits along Wisconsin Avenue NW.
Navin Bhutani

GEORGETOWN—NYC fast-casual Dig debuts in D.C. on Sunday, April 30 in a cute little hut that formerly housed Paolo’s Ristorante. Dig specializes in homemade focaccia club sandwiches and seasonal bowls filled with charred chicken, roasted sweet potatoes, charred broccoli with lemon, and brown rice with garlic aioli. The location also offers pastries like cookies, flourless chocolate brownies, and sticky carrot cake. This Dig is one of the first to offer customizable dinner boxes for the whole family ($40). Opening day proceeds go to Hoya Hub Food Pantry, with freebies for the first 100 customers in the door. 1301 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Rasa’s co-founders Sahil Rahman and Rahul Vinod at their new Rockville locale.
Rey Lopez for Rasa

ROCKVILLE—Rasa, the fast-growing counter for standout Indian food in D.C. and Northern Virginia, opened in Rockville on Thursday, April 27 with build-your-own or signature bowls, cocktails, and homemade vegan soft serve. The 2,200-square-foot newcomer in Montrose Crossing Shopping Center is a homecoming of sorts for Rasa owners and Eater Young Guns (’18) Rahul Vinod and Sahil Rahman. They both grew up in Montgomery County and their dads co-own Rockville mainstay Bombay Bistro. Rockville, open 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily, joins other Rasas in Navy Yard, Mt. Vernon Triangle, National Landing, and Fairfax, Virginia. 12033 Rockville Pike, Rockville, Maryland

FOGGY BOTTOM—Alitiko, the fast-casual ode to owner Dimitri Piskapas’s childhood in Greece, opened at flashy food hall the Western near GWU and the World Bank. The stall serves gyros, sandwiches, Mediterranean sides, zucchini fritters, slow-roasted shawarma, glazed pork neck, and fries. 2000 Pennsylvania Avenue NW

DOWNTOWN—D.C.’s 9-to-5 standby Best Sandwich Place relocated and reopened in the old Mochica and Chifa DC space on Monday, April 24. 919 18th Street NW

SIXTEENTH STREET HEIGHTS—Owner/chef Candice Mensah’s roving West African venture Hedzole opened a permanent home in a small Northwest space that formerly housed Social Kitchen. A daughter of Ghanaian immigrants, Mensah was born in D.C. and grew up in Alexandria, Virginia. With the support of family and friends, she debuted Hedzole in 2019 and quickly amassed a loyal following at farmers markets in Northern Virginia and D.C. Longtime favorites making their way to D.C. include her take on stewed oxtail over Ghanaian waakye and groundnut (peanut) soup, red red with fried plantains, and coconut or jollof rice. The growing menu will add new dishes like goat curry and okra stews, plus South African wines and Black-owned labels in the U.S. Hedzole can seat 12 inside and 20 across its patio. 5505 Colorado Avenue

DOWNTOWN—Fast-casual Indian chain Butter Chicken Company returns downtown in a new location near the now-closed 18th Street NW original. 1717 Pennsylvania Avenue NW

WOODLEY PARK—Rose Ave Bakery, Eater DC’s 2021 Bakery of the Year known for its wildly popular colorful treats like mochi crullers covered in purple ube icing, finally has a brick-and-mortar location to call its own. Owner Rose Nguyen debuted her Asian-American bakery in downtown’s the Block food hall in spring 2020, and that location closed in January to shift attention to its 2,000-square-foot upper Northwest address. The sleek new Woodley Park digs in an old Dunkin’ Donuts offers more kitchen space to add sandwiches and espresso drinks to the equation. Walk-in hours to start are Thursdays to Sundays from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. with an opening menu full of passion fruit and pandan doughnuts, black sesame swirl cookies, savory buns, ube lattes, and iced teas. 2633 Connecticut Avenue NW

DUPONT—Middleburg Va.’s popular Thai restaurant Thaiverse expanded to D.C. in the historic 1890s row house that formerly housed Darlington House. Opening lunch and dinner menus include crispy shrimp wraps, kimchi dumplings, fiery Thai salads, chef’s specials like duck in tamarind sauce, curries, rice and noodle dishes, and more. The multi-level dining, drinking, and event space has room for 222, with a 20-seat patio. Encompassing both an Italian restaurant specializing in pasta and a subterranean bar with a rock and roll theme, the Darlington House opened in 2008 and shuttered during the pandemic. Thaiverse also reactivates the downstairs music venue that welcomed Bruce Springsteen and the Ramones over its decades-long run, calling it “Step-Childe Harold” with a selection of bar snacks and service until 1 a.m. on weekends. 1610 20th Street NW

March 2023

DC Central Kitchen opened its newest cafe at its Buzzard Point headquarters.
DC Central Kitchen

BUZZARD POINT—DC Central Kitchen’s third “social enterprise” cafe in D.C. debuted on Friday, March 31 in the lobby of the nonprofit’s new headquarters at the Michael R. Klein Center for Jobs & Justice. The cafe offers coffee and locally sourced food made by DC Central Kitchen staff and culinary job training students, with proceeds going towards living-wage jobs and hunger-fighting endeavors across D.C. Its two existing cafes sit in Southeast’s THEARC and Penn Quarter’s Martin Luther King Jr. Public Library. 2121 First Street SW

Willie T’s Seafood Shack just touched down in Silver Spring.
Willie T’s Seafood Shack/Facebook

SILVER SPRING—Fast-casual Willie T’s Seafood Shack opened its second U.S. location on Monday, March 27, bringing Silver Spring diners shrimp baskets, battered cod, lobster and crab rolls, and mixed seafood platters. Thompson Hospitality’s flagship Willie T’s debuted in November in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. The 1,200-square-foot Maryland edition features 12 seats for counter service, plus takeout and delivery, with daily hours from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sides include French fries seasoned with Old Bay, hush puppies, fried onion petals, and coleslaw, with slices of red velvet or chocolate cake for dessert. Thompson also runs Matchbox, Big Buns Damn Good Burgers, Makers Union, Milk & Honey, and more. 9326 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, Maryland

Our Mom Eugenia’s founder Eugenia Hobson.
Our Mom Eugenia

ARLINGTON—Our Mom Eugenia debuts at Arlington’s Village at Shirlington on Thursday, March 30. Its vet chef-owner Eugenia Hobson, born and raised on the island of Zakynthos, learned the art of Greek cooking from her grandmother for whom she is named. Lunch and dinner service will feature soups, salads, spreads, seafood, meat and vegetarian entrees, traditional Greek desserts, cocktails, and an all-Greek wine list. The 3,600-square-foot newcomer joins two other Virginia locations in the Mosaic District and Great Falls. The Arlington complex will also welcome Astro Beer Hall this spring. 4044 Campbell Avenue, Shirlington, Virginia (next to ChiKo)

ARLINGTON—Nationwide chain P.F. Chang’s just debuted in Reagan National Airport’s newest Concourse E (Gates 46-59). The 5,800-square-foot Asian restaurant brings the travel hub its lineup of familiar favorites like spicy chicken, Mongolian beef, and lettuce wraps. This airport location joins the six other P.F. Chang’s locations across the D.C. area. DCA

ELLICOTT CITY, MARYLAND—Korean fried chicken chain bb.q Chicken debuted its latest outpost in Maryland. Open from 12 p.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday, and from 12 p.m. to 1 a.m. on Fridays and Saturdays. 8801 Baltimore National Pike, Ellicott City, Maryland

UNION MARKET—NYC’s cult ice cream company Van Leeuwen breaks into the D.C. market on Thursday, March 23 with the first of three planned scoop shops. The inaugural locale, a pretty pastel-hued store in the Union Market district, opens with over 30 dairy (and vegan) flavors like Honeycomb, Earl Grey tea, Sicilian pistachio, and Marionberry Cheesecake made with vine-ripened berries from Oregon’s Stahlbush Island Farms. Van Leeuwen curbs daily sugar fixes until 10 p.m. and as late as 11 p.m. on weekends. Two additional stores will drop in Adams Morgan and Georgetown over the next few months. For its first D.C. location, the brand partnered with Michelin-starred chef Johnny Spero to revive his beloved “Birch” ice cream flavor that originated at Reverie, his Georgetown tasting room that remains closed due to fire damage. 418 Morse Street NE

GEORGETOWN—Shouk, the Israeli fast-casual known for its vegan street snacks, falafel, and one of D.C.’s favorite veggie burgers, debuted its latest area location in Georgetown (view full menu here). Grand opening deals on Friday, March 24 (11 a.m. to 2 p.m.) include $5 pitas, bowls, and buns—and a chance to win free Shouk for a year. Shouk, which got its start in D.C.’s Mount Vernon Triangle in 2016, also maintains stores in the Union Market district and Rockville, Maryland. 1426 Wisconsin Avenue NW

Shouk brings Tel Aviv street foods made with vegetables, beans, grains, and spices to Georgetown.
Laura Chase de Formigny

UNION MARKET—NYC bakery Maman’s spacious new D.C. digs swings open on Friday, March 10. The Southern France-influenced brand is known for its dreamy and floral aesthetic—and a nutty chocolate chip cookie of Oprah’s “Favorite Things” fame. 1300 4th Street NE

EDGEWOOD—Bryant Street Market, MRP Realty’s shiny new food hall near the Rhode Island Avenue Metro station, debuted Thursday, March 9 with Hawaiian eats and mochi doughnuts from Blowfish Poke to start (11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m.). The 12,400-square-foot food hall carves out room for nine vendors in all. Popular Mexican street foods spot Taqueria Habanero and Bar Alegria, a 26-seat offshoot of the Habanero family’s Tequila & Mezcal in Columbia Heights, went live on Friday, March 17 along with bubble tea shop Tiger Sugar and outdoor breakfast spot Grassfed Griddle. 670 Rhode Island Avenue NE

South Block’s newest juice shop in McLean.
South Block

MCLEAN, VIRGINIA—Acai bowl, smoothie, and juice shop South Block debuted its latest store at Chesterbrook Shopping Center on Monday, March 6. The location is especially significant for CEO Amir Mostafavi, who grew up in McLean and his parents owned Box Office Video in Langley Shopping Center for over 20 years. Mostafavi’s homegrown juice shop that got its start on a college campus now has 14 locations, and the next one will sit inside Amazon’s new HQ2 headquarters in Arlington. 6246 Old Dominion Drive, McLean, Virginia

COLUMBIA HEIGHTS—Johnny’s All American backfills the space beloved Filipino restaurant Bad Saint left behind. Owner and Ohioan Branden Givand bills the bar as a “fancy dive,” per Washingtonian, and serves margaritas, Sazeracs, burgers, beer-and-shot combos, DC Brau’s Old Time Lager, and Miller High Life. Expanded morning hours will call for coffee, egg sandwiches, and doughnuts. 3226 11th Street NW

February 2023

COLUMBIA, MARYLAND—Toast, smoothie, and juice bar Toastique opens its sixth area location on Saturday, February 25 in a 1,700-square-foot standalone building with ample outdoor seating. GameOn Bar + Arcade and The Angry Jerk are also opening in the same downtown Columbia complex later this year. 6201 Mango Tree Road, Columbia, Maryland

VIENNA, VIRGINIA—Japanese-styled izakaya Akai Tori Ramen & Yakitori officially opened in the heart of Vienna on Tuesday, February 21, with truffle-flavored shoyu broth, sushi, sake, and more. The standalone location specializes in ramen, donburi, tempura sushi, and street foods like yakitori (grilled skewers) seasoned with salt and tare with homemade sauces. All of its ramen broth—tonkotsu, shio, shoyu, and miso—is made in-house. Akai Tori comes from Mark Liu, the chef-owner behind Vienna’s acclaimed Sushi Yoshi. Hours go until as late as 11 p.m. on weekends. 234 Maple Ave E., Vienna, Virginia

Sauteed shrimp sits atop homemade Cajun alfredo penne pasta.
Kitchen Savages/Facebook

SOUTHEAST—Former elected official and anti-violence activist Darrell Gaston brought his Anacostia neighborhood a new Creole restaurant this month. Kitchen Savages opens with crab cake egg rolls, honey-blackened salmon, pan-seared quarter chicken atop mashed potatoes, oysters, wings slathered in honey garlic, mumbo, or Hennessy barbecue sauce, and banana pudding cheesecake. Weekday happy hour (4 p.m. to 7 p.m.) includes $6 shots, cocktails, and wings. Order takeout or dine in. 1211 Good Hope Road SE

H STREET NE—Binge Bar, D.C.’s first zero-proof drinking establishment, has arrived. The dry bar offers non-alcoholic beer, wine, and craft cocktails like a Mango Mint Spritz and Cucumber Mangorita. Homemade Filipino food like lumpia rolls join cheese and charcuterie boards. Happy hour (4 p.m. to 7 p.m.) includes $7 drinks. 506 H Street NE

CAPITOL HILL—Silver Spring’s family-friendly pizza parlor Pacci’s debuted its long-awaited sophomore location in Lincoln Park this month. An opening list of 11 red and white pies join starters, salads, pastas, ribeye steaks, and desserts like limoncello cake. There’s wine and beer to start, with a liquor license for cocktails coming soon. Hours are 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. 106 13th Street SE

PENN QUARTER—Compass Coffee’s newest D.C. digs opens with familiar pours, spring selections, and breakfast sandwiches starting at 6:30 a.m. (and 8 a.m. on weekends) in a former Peet’s Coffee space. 435 11th Street NW

DUPONT—Casual Italian eatery Certo! recently debuted the Royal Sonesta hotel with homemade meatball sliders, classic margherita pizza, clam-topped linguini, braised short rib, and more. Breakfast and brunch brings malted waffles, steak and eggs, and avocado toast to the table. 2121 P Street NW

ARLINGTON—D.C.’s La Coop Coffee expanded across state lines with the opening of an Arlington cafe on Saturday, February 11. Owner Juan Luis Salazar Cano continues to leverage his fair-sourced coffee connections in Guatemala at its sleek new setup. Hot and cold drinks join a food menu full of empanadas, pastries, sandwiches, and salads. 4807 1st Street N. Arlington, Virginia

WOODLEY PARK—Stylish soul food spot Flavorture opened with bourbon cocktails and decadent surf-and-turf menu full of grilled rosemary lamb chops, jerk jackfruit tacos, fried sea bass with gouda grits, 10-cheese mac and cheese, and collard greens with smoked turkey. A generous weekend brunch runs $85 per person. 2609 24th Street NW

January 2023

BETHESDA, MARYLAND—Fitness club The St. James and chef Spike Mendelsohn’s new cafe Vim & Victor debuted in Bethesda in late January. The indoor wellness bar includes (build-your-own) bowls, toasts, and smoothies. 6828 Wisconsin Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland

Vim & Victor offers all sorts of granola, yogurt, and fruit.
Vim & Victor

SOUTHWEST—Beach-y Latin street food chain Bartaco opened at the Wharf on Monday, January 23. Unlike its landlocked D.C. counterpart in Mt. Vernon Triangle, its scenic new spot sports a 40-seat bar overlooking the Potomac. Cocktails made with fresh-squeezed juices and bottled and canned beers from DC Brau and Atlas Brew Works join familiar dishes like pork belly and Baja fish tacos, duck birria, guacamole, and street corn. A leafy, year-round patio outfitted with private cabanas sits near an outdoor mural from artist Mark Boomershine depicting local jazz legend Duke Ellington and NASA’s first Black female engineer Mary Jackson. Dine-in hours start at 5 p.m., with lunch, takeout, and delivery starting in a few weeks. Take-home orders include taco packs, margarita kits, and kid’s meals in retro lunch boxes. 645 Wharf Street SW

COLUMBIA HEIGHTS—James Wozniuk, the chef-owner behind essential Malaysian eatery Makan and subterranean sports bar Thirsty Crow, adds a spice-rubbed roast chicken takeout called Spicebird on Thursday, January 26. Available for delivery and pickup from Makan’s front door (3400 11th Street NW), the Southeast Asian ghost kitchen stars bone-in chicken blasted with a 15-spice blend and a house “KL Sauce” inspired by the first meal Wozniuk ever had in Kuala Lumpur. Sides include Thai basil fried rice, cold sesame noodles, and pulled chicken with a coconut vinaigrette. Order online.

BALLSTON—Silver Diner replaces its closed Clarendon location with a fresh Arlington outpost in Ballston. Daily hours kick off at 7 a.m. and run until as late as 3 a.m. on weekends, with free two-hour parking. 4400 Wilson Boulevard Arlington, Virginia

LEESBURG—Fast-growing Neapolitan pizzeria Pupatella opened its latest area location in a former Pizza Hut. 350 E. Market Street, Leesburg, Virginia

FRIENDSHIP HEIGHTS—Moroccan newcomer Alley Cat went live inside the upper Northwest space formerly occupied by Chatter and Chadwicks. Check out the meze-filled menu here. 5247 Wisconsin Avenue NW

14TH STREET NW—Brooklyn-born Blank Street Coffee pushed play on its Logan Circle location on Saturday, January 21. The high-tech coffee chain fueled on private equity dollars and high-volume espresso machines opens with pistachio lattes and seasonal candy cane cold brew, plus baked goods from with local favorites Pluma by Bluebird and Green Almond Pantry. The brand has ambitious plans to balloon to 10 area stores by the end of the year. 1807 14th Street NW

Blank Street Coffee opened on 14th Street NW on Saturday, January 21.
Blank Street Coffee

DUPONT CIRCLE—The iconic Washington Hilton hotel unveils a new all-day eatery on Thursday, January 19. District Line Café & Market slings fresh pastries and croissants made on-site, acai bowls, short rib bagel sandwiches, crab chowder, and mumbo chicken sandwiches, salads, and desserts. Local vendors include The Capital Candy Jar, Route 11 Chips, and Truly Good Foods. A portion of opening day proceeds go to the Capital Area Food Bank. Hours are 6 a.m. to 11:30 p.m.; view menu here. 1919 Connecticut Avenue NW

The colorful shop seats 35, plus a patio outside for 24 more.
Rey Lopez/Colada Shop

DUPONT CIRCLE—Fast-growing Cuban cafe and bar Colada Shop opens its fifth area outpost on Wednesday, January 18 in the heart of Dupont. An all-day menu full of familiar favorites like sofrito-based egg skillets, tostadas, empanadas, and pastelitos joins new family-style dishes ($21-$28) like mojo-marinated chicken with arborio rice, sofrito, and tumeric or slow-roasted pork ribs slathered in its guava barbecue sauce alongside yucca fries. The rum-soaked cocktail list includes a piña colada, mojito, and Cuba Libre jazzed up with cascara bitters. Partners Daniella Senior and Juan Coronado debuted Colada Shop in Logan Circle back in 2016. 1900 N Street NW

A pepperoni pie at Pizza Serata.
Pizza Serata

UNION MARKET—Meet Crooked Run and Pizza Serata, a new brewery-meets-pizza place for Northeast. The joint project, opening Wednesday, January 18, comes from Crooked Run Fermentation brewmasters Jake Endres and Lee Rogan and D.C. chef Chris Morgan (Bammy’s, Yasmīne). Pizza Czar cookbook author Anthony Falco, an alum of Brooklyn’s famed Roberta’s, also consulted on the menu. Sandwiches include a next-level grilled cheese, Italian sausage, and mortadella built on homemade focaccia. An opening list of 10 personal pies include the “Hot + Bothered” (spicy Italian sauce, sopressata, mozzarella, pecorino, basil, Calabrian chile oil); kale and ’nduja; mixed mushrooms; Sicilian anchovy; and build-your-own options. Starters include garlic wings, calamari, stretchy stracciatella, salads, and more. The decade-old brewery out of Leesburg, Virginia pours its reliable list of beers, an Italian pilsner just for D.C., natural wines, ciders, and non-alcoholic beverages. 550 Morse Street NE

SOUTHWEST—Kilwins, the nostalgia-inducing ice cream shop and candy store chain largely sprinkled along the East Coast, debuted at the Wharf on Monday, January 16. Confections largely made on-site include fudge, caramel corn, brittle, truffles, caramel apples, and chocolate-dipped Oreos, pretzels, marshmallows, Rice Krispies, and Twinkies. Its first D.C. location opened in Navy Yard in 2021. Founded in Petoskey, Michigan in 1947, Kilwins has ballooned to 150 locations across the U.S. D.C. franchisee and Tap99 owner Jason Cherry plans to open two more shops over the next four years, with a neighborhood wish list that includes Georgetown, Chinatown, and Buzzard Point. 663 Water Street SW

RIVERDALE PARK, MARYLAND—Sourdough startup Manifest Bread has a location to call its own. Prince George’s County’s new neighborhood bakery comes from restaurant vets Rick and Tyes Cook, which started the bread brand in 2018. Swing by for a rotating selection of sourdough loaves, which go through a multi-day process to develop flavor and texture, plus sweet and savory pastries. 6208 Rhode Island Avenue, Riverdale Park, Maryland

South Block just opened its first location in Loudoun County.
South Block

ASHBURN, VIRGINIA—Homegrown juice company South Block unveiled a fresh outpost in One Loudoun on Monday, January 9. The 1,500-square-foot locale—its first in Loudoun County—is South Block’s 13th to date and debuts with a familiar lineup of colorful acai bowls, smoothies, and cold-pressed juices. Two more Virginia stores, one in McLean and another at Amazon HQ2, are up next. For new year, South Block introduced a new line of “skincare” shakes made with trendy sea moss and collagen to encourage gut health and radiant skin, hair, and nails. Use code NEWYEAR23 at checkout for 23-percent off all online juice orders through January 31. 20327 Exchange Street, Ashburn, Virginia

MULTIPLE LOCATIONS—Cult cookie and ice cream company Insomnia Cookies supersizes its D.C. portfolio this week, adding a pair of locations in Shaw and Penn Quarter. Its fourth and fifth DMV stores, both opening Saturday, January 14, sell cookie classics like chocolate chunk, Snickerdoodle and Confetti Deluxe varieties, plus a full slate of vegan options. 1924 8th Street NW; 614 E Street NW

Fast-growing Foxtrot debuts a 4,000-square-foot location in Rosslyn.
Matt Haas

ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA—High-tech convenience store and all-day cafe Foxtrot opens its sixth area location in Rosslyn, Virginia on Friday, January 13. Opening day festivities includes music by DJ Throdown, live screen printing, and free food and drinks from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. 1771 Pierce Street, Arlington, Virginia

SHAW—Pho House, a new family-run Vietnamese business situated in the old Kiss Lounge space, opens with fresh pork, shrimp, and veggie egg rolls, banh mi on a fluffy baguette, boba and Thai teas, and strong Vietnamese coffee. 634 Florida Avenue NW

SHAW—Spicy Water African Grill debuted for lunch and dinner with chicken kebab sandwiches, all kinds of salad bowls topped with proteins like salmon, beef, and shrimp, grilled mackerel and red snapper, and whole or half chicken combo deals. 2019 11th Street NW

December 2022

ARLINGTON, VIRGINIA—Decades-old Mexican chain Rosa Mexicano debuts a 200-seat outpost at Fashion Centre at Pentagon City on Monday, December 12, building up its local portfolio back up to two locations (the other is at National Harbor). Familiar offerings include tableside guacamole, taco plates, and frozen pomegranate margaritas. The 4,200-square-foot restaurant features a large outdoor patio, bar stocked with 100 types of tequila and agave-based spirits, and color-soaked dining room. The new mall outpost sits next to Zara and upcoming Latin American restaurant Maizal. Born on the Upper East Side in 1984, Rosa Mexicano closed its longtime Chinatown locale during the pandemic (a new Mi Vida will soon slide in). Rosas across New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Massachusetts will be joined by more in Vegas and Orlando. 1100 Hayes Street, Arlington, Virginia

Lechon kawali with liver sarsa at Sari: Filipino Kusina.
Sari: Filipino Kusina

ANNANDALE, VIRGINIA—Acclaimed Filipino chef Paolo Dungca’s fall menu collaboration with his new partners at Supreme Barbeque has proved to be so popular, it’s now here to stay. The Bradlick Shopping Center site flips into a new spot called Sari: Filipino Kusina on Saturday, December 10 at 11 a.m. Pinoy comfort foods include sisig, a basket of chicharron with spiced vinegar, smoked beef rib bistek, smoked tocino ribs, and ginataang gulay with bittermelon and butternut squash. The name honors the sarimanok, a mythical bird from the Philippines that symbolizes good fortune. Dungca and his new Supreme Barbeque partners will bring Filipino restaurant Hiraya to H Street NE next spring. 6920 Braddock Rd, Annandale, Virginia

GEORGETOWN—After impressing Navy Yard with its za’atar-dusted pastries for the past two years, Levantine cafe Yellow adds an additional outpost across town on Saturday, December 10. Chef-owner Michael Rafidi’s respected bakery that marries Levantine flavors with French patisserie staples specializes in baklava lattes of draft, Turkish coffees, and pitas stuffed with coal-fired chicken shawarma, falafel, and smoked feta. The 1,700-square-foot cafe with a wood-burning oven is also bigger than the first — with 30 seats inside and 30 on a patio. Evening service debuts in January with Lebanese and Palestinian wines, street snacks, meze, and wood-fired flatbreads. 1524 Wisconsin Avenue NW

A wood-fired oven sends out Jerusalem-style bagels.
Rey Lopez for Yellow

NORTH BETHESDA—Caruso’s Grocery, Capitol Hill’s essential Italian-American destination for old-school chicken Parm, fluffy tiramisu, and well-made martinis for $10, adds another outpost at North Bethesda’s Pike & Rose. The location inside six-year-old pub Owen’s Ordinary builds upon a partnership with Neighborhood Restaurant Group founder Michael Babin, whose Roost food hall welcomed Caruso’s Grocery in spring 2021. Chef Matt Adler’s decidedly unmodern tribute to classic red sauce joints delivers dishes heavy on nostalgia, quality ingredients, and technique, with pastas like gnocchi, fettuccine, ravioli, and penne alla vodka with peas and prosciutto all made on-site. 11820 Trade Street, North Bethesda, Maryland

TYSONS CORNER—Modern American eatery Circa and vibrant tequila bar Él Bebe just debuted side-by-side locations totaling 10,000 square feet at The Boro. Circa debuted for brunch, lunch, and dinner with dishes like tuna poke nachos, braised short rib, and wild mushroom flatbread. A “Boro Spritz” and house-barreled and aged Old Fashioned built with maple syrup. Neon-soaked Él Bebe brings birria tacos, enchiladas, quesadillas, burritos, desserts, frozen margaritas, a tequila Old Fashioned, beer, and wine to the table. The two eateries operate a similar setup in Navy Yard, and Circa also sits in Foggy Bottom and Arlington. Metropolitan Hospitality Group (MHG) also runs Trio Grill, Salt, and Open Road Grill. 1675 Silver Hill Drive-8354 Broad Street, McLean, Va.

RESTON, VIRGINIA—Bottomless Brazilian meat chain Fogo de Chão debuted its newest area location in Reston Town Center. An open-air churrasco grill displayed in the center of the dining room lets guests watch Fogo’s gaucho chefs butcher and grill a variety of fire-roasted proteins. Fogo will donate a portion of its first-week sales, as well as leftover meals, to Cornerstones. 11915 Democracy Drive, Reston, Virginia

Fogo de Chão’s new dining room in Reston.
Fogo de Chão

November 2022

DOWNTOWN—Casey Patten’s sub shop Grazie Grazie unveils its second D.C. location on Tuesday, November 29. All of the same sandwiches, cheesesteaks, and salads from the 3-year-old Wharf original will be on the menu. The new K Street NW sibling debuts pizza for the first time, served by the slice or whole pie and finished with Pecorino Romano and fresh basil. Red sauce options include the “Classico” (aged and fresh mozzarella, provolone) and “Bocelli” dotted with pepperoni cups from Ohio’s Ezzo Sausage Co. and Calabrian hot honey. A white pie piles on mozzarella, fontina cheese, herbed mushrooms, onion, and mushroom cream. Open for takeout, dine-in, and delivery from 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily. Patten also runs Midtown Center’s new pizza and pasta parlor Grazie Nonna with chef Gerald Addison. 1875 K Street NW

DOWNTOWN—Pow Pow, D.C.’s kosher, vegan-friendly shop that got its start on H Street NE, debuted its anticipated Franklin Square location this week. Pow Pow channels Asian flavors and techniques in a variety of starters and bowls, like Taiwanese fried cashew mozzarella, kung pao green beans, and a yoga dragon bowl with a grilled chicken substitute tossed in peanut sauce. To celebrate World Vegan Day all November, use “PowPowFamily” at checkout for 20-percent off online orders at its sophomore D.C. digs. The chic, industrial-style space framed with tiger murals and neon street art features a row of window-facing bar stools and booths. Pow Pow comes from local DJ/restaurateur Shaun Sharkey and plant-based chef Margaux Riccio. 1250 I Street NW

BETHESDA—Foxtrot, the buzzy, all-day market and cafe with its own on-demand delivery app, debuts its fifth DMV-area location at Bethesda Row on Friday, November 18. The 4,000-square-foot space boasts an expansive outdoor patio and oak bar slinging local beers and a curated wine list. There’s also coffee, smoothies, breakfast tacos, salads and bowls, and grab-and-go meals for lunch and dinner. Foxtrot carries more than 150 local products from some 50 companies, including beans from Ceremony Coffee, gelato from Dolcezza, and hummus from Little Sesame. Foxtrot joins area stores in Dupont, Mount Vernon Triangle, Georgetown, and Old Town. An opening day party (4 p.m. to 7 p.m.) includes music, food, drink, and freebies. Download its app during opening week for a surprise gift. 7262 Woodmont Avenue, Bethesda, Maryland

Timber Pizza Co. opened in early November at Reagan National Airport.
Timber Pizza Co.

ARLINGTON—Timber Pizza Co., the acclaimed pie shop and food truck from Daniela Moreira and Andrew Dana (Call Your Mother), branched out to Reagan National Airport this month. Located in Concourse E near Gate E5, the new airport outpost joins two Timber Pizza storefronts in Petworth and Ballston. Open daily for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and late-night orders to cater to red-eye flyers. A menu of made-to-order, 10-inch personal pies feature its most popular red, green and white options. That includes the Bentley (tomato sauce, provolone and mozzarella blend, cured chorizo, soppressata, Peruvian sweet peppers, spicy honey); Green Monster (pesto, fresh mozzarella, feta cheese, zucchini, kale); and a slow-roasted pork variety with pickled shallots and spicy pineapple chips to dip. — Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport

The lounge is splashed with a mural of iconic Black golfers Renee Powell and Charlie Sifford.

DOWNTOWN—CitySwing, D.C.’s latest golf simulator course that debuted in July, finally flicked on its food and beverage program this month. Take a break from the putting green or immersive golf suite outfitted with Trackman technology and head to the bar and lounge for a spiked seltzer, Old Fashioned, espresso martini, or a “John Daly” (Deep Eddy lemonade and sweet tea vodkas, lemon juice, mandarin). Eats include wings (aka “s’wings”), chicken or tuna salad sandwiches, Reubens, salmon sliders, pretzel bites, salads, and more. The public can partake in the menu, too. Its high-tech owner Tari Cash, who formerly worked at Tesla and Under Armour, will soon open another CitySwing in Reston. 901 New York Ave NW

SHAW—Panamanian coffee chain Café Unido added a second D.C. outpost, complete with the country’s cherished coffee “omakase” service. Founders Benito Bermudez and Mario Castrellon source beans directly from growers in Panama, and their new 69-seat cafe with a big patio offers an all-day menu full of empanadas, hojaldres (flatbreads), and a coffee-rubbed burger. Find local beers, natural wines, and caffeinated cocktails at the bar. The D.C. original (and first in the U.S.) sits in Union Market district’s Latin market La Cosecha. 908 W Street NW

October 2022

NAVY YARD—Silver Diner’s debut D.C. location, situated directly across from Nationals Park, unveiled a shiny new rooftop bar that stays open until as late as 2 a.m. on weekends. The 21-and-up space, dubbed Silver Social, debuts with bar bites like half-smoke sliders, flatbreads, and Buffalo chicken tacos from the Maryland-based chain’s chef Ype Von Hengst. The 121-seat perch with a heated terrace trailed its downstairs counterpart by a few weeks. Mixologist Richard Torres whips up cocktails with local spirits and fresh juices to go along with local beers and wines. Silver Social stays open until as late as 2 a.m. on weekends, with a build-you-own mimosa brunch until 4 p.m. A debut bartender guest series on Thursday, November 17 donates a portion of proceeds to D.C. nonprofit Leveling the Playing Field. 1250 Half Street SE

UNION MARKET— The Northeast food hall welcomes a Lebanese stall called Yasmīne on Monday, October 24. Chefs Chris Morgan and Gerald Addison (Bammy’s) reunite with beverage director Said Haddad to recreate the post-shift street foods and drinks they used to make during their days at Michelin-rated Maydan. Opening offerings include grilled lamb kebabs, thinly-shaved beef shawarma, shish taouk, falafel, cheeses, salads, spreads, and pita-wrapped sandwiches topped with herbs, vegetables, and flavorful sauces. Yasmīne, named after Haddad’s beloved grandmother, also centers around pours of arak (a popular Middle Eastern distilled spirit). Arak “service” comes with add-ons like carrots with lemon and sea salt; Medjoul dates salted and seasoned with orange zest; and herbed mixed olives. The full bar also offers wine and cocktails.

Yasmīne replaces Rappahannock Oyster Bar in Union Market.
Jen Chase/Jennifer Chase Photography

Local bubble tea shop Spot of Tea also opened a new outpost inside Union Market on Saturday, October 22. A debut line of vegan soft serve joins familiar drinks filled with tapioca boba, sweet lychee jelly, or savory adzuki red bean. 1309 5th Street NE

SPRINGFIELD, VIRGINIA—Duck Donuts opened its sixteenth shop in Virginia on Saturday, October 22 in the Old Keene Mill Shopping Center. It’s the second store for franchisee Tesfaye Dres, who also owns and operates of its Alexandria location. 8404A Old Keene Mill Road, Springfield, Va.

Duck Donuts brings sweet spheres to Springfield.
Duck Donuts

TRINIDAD—Calypso Coffee and Ice Cream opened Saturday, October 22 with ice cream, coffees, teas, and pastries. Calypso, named for the Afro-Caribbean music genre from Trinidad and Tobago, pays homage to the bright colors of Carnival with a big mural out front. The neighborhood gathering spot marks the first retail project for the building’s residential real estate investors. Opening hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday to Friday and starting at 10 a.m. on weekends. Swing through on opening day for free ice cream and coffee from noon to 2 p.m. 1730 Trinidad Avenue NE

Prominent muralist Erik B Ricks splashed the facade with hummingbirds and his signature geometric shapes.

DUPONT CIRCLE—Peter Chang, the acclaimed Chinese chef behind a restaurant empire scattered across Maryland, Virginia, and Connecticut, brought D.C. a long-awaited taste of his bold Sichuan cooking. The former Chinese embassy chef teams up with his daughter Lydia Chang to open Chang Chang in Dupont Circle. The dual project is comprised of separate dine-in (“Chang In”) and carryout (“Chang Out”) operations, with little menu overlap for each. Chang Out opened first on Saturday, October 8, followed by Chang In’s full-service dining room on Thursday, October 20. 1200 19th Street NW

OLD TOWN—Fast-growing local chain Andy’s Pizza just brought its award-winning pies to the center of Old Town. The casual pizza parlor opens with a familiar menu full of New York-style slices, whole pies, salads, wings, and fries. A bar is projected to open within the next week or so with local drafts and cocktails. Owner Andy Brown’s acclaimed chain that got its start in Tysons Corner now has stores scattered all over D.C., and Old Town kicks off its suburbia expansion plans (a Bethesda locale is next). To celebrate the grand opening on Wednesday, October 19, Andy’s will offer a free slice with any purchase. Open for evenings to start, with lunch coming soon. Andy’s Pizza just secured a spot on Washington Post food critic Tom Sietsema’s fall dining guide. 107 N. Fayette Street, Alexandria, Va.

LOGAN CIRCLE—The foot of a neon-green Holiday Inn is home to the first Johnny Rockets D.C. has seen in years. The ’50s diner chain that closed its Georgetown storefront in 2020 just made a surprise city comeback right near Logan Circle’s nightlife strip. Lit up like a birthday cake along Rhode Island Avenue NW, the shiny new location sports black-and-white tiled floors, bright red booths, D.C.-themed posters, Motown music, and a retro bar serving draft beers and spiked milkshakes. Cooked-to-order burgers and fries share space on the menu with poultry sibling Hurricane Grill & Wings, marking parent company Fat Brands Inc.’s first co-branded U.S. location. D.C. also maintains a walk-up Johnny Rockets in the depths of Union Station. And there’s no shortage of fast-casual counters in FedEx Field thanks to Washington Commanders owner Dan Snyder, who used to have a stake in the oldies chain. Open daily starting at 6:30 a.m. until 11 p.m. on Sunday through Thursday and midnight on weekends. 1501 Rhode Island Avenue NW

NAVY YARD—Long-running Maryland-based chain Silver Diner opens its first outpost in D.C. proper on Wednesday, October 5. The two-piece project next to Nationals Park features a second-story level called Bar Silver serving drinks and small plates and an outdoor terrace overlooking the baseball stadium. The lower level will look more familiar, serving Silver Diner’s hits from executive chef and Chopped winner Ype Von Hengst, a big kid’s menu, and vegan and gluten-free options. The 33-year-old brand announced the 8,000-square-foot setup back in 2021. 1250 Half Street SE

CAPITOL HILL—Cantonese dim sum spot Han Palace opens its third area location on Saturday, October 1. Along with an a la carte menu, two unlimited tasting menus are served at lunch and dinner: dim sum option ($38) with soup dumplings, scallion pancakes, steamed pork buns, noodle and rice dishes; and Peking duck spread ($48) with dishes like crispy beef and crispy eggplant. Tea are included in both. The original Han Palace opened in Arlington in 1973 in Arlington, and owner Chris Zhu now runs outposts in Tysons Corner and Woodley Park. Daily hours will be 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. 522 8th Street SE.

A look inside Han Palace’s new Barracks Row location.
Han Palace

September 2022

MANASSAS—Los Angeles-born chain Fatburger brings its famed cooked-to-order burgers to the D.C. market for the first time. Its Manassas outpost shares space with chicken wing sibling Buffalo’s Express, with a bar sending out cocktails like a Fat Mule, Two in the Mornin’ Daiquiri, and spiked milkshakes made with hand-scooped ice cream. The Buffalo’s Express menu features bone-in or boneless wings with a choice of homemade sauces. Open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. 8097 Sudley Road, Manassas, Virginia

BRENTWOOD—Mushroom-obsessed sandwich and salad shop MushDC opened at miXt Food Hall in the heart of Maryland’s Gateway Arts District. Mushrooms mimic meat to make sandwiches the Izzit Chik’n, Bahn Mi Izzit, Jerk BBQ, a Mush N’ Cheese. Mush DC, which started as a pop-up at Shaw’s Roy Boys, comes from American Son alum Tarik Frazier and and business partner Alex Hamilton. 3809 Rhode Island Avenue, Brentwood, Maryland

August 2022

Tight Five Pub opened in late August.
Tight Five Pub

ADAMS MORGAN—The former Smoke & Barrel space is now home to Tight Five Pub, a new sports bar from two former rugby players that serves pub grub, cold beers, cocktails, and nightly and game day specials. Epic deals out of the gate include $3 PBR cans at brunch and after 10 p.m. downstairs alongside $5 rails. Wings, slathered in homemade barbecue, Buffalo, garlic pepper, or a “spicy terminator” sauce, are half-off all day on Tuesdays. On Wednesdays, a $40 “Scrum” package features 12 wings, fries or tots, veggies and dips, fried pickles and nachos, alongside live music and discounts for rugby jersey-wearing customers. The bar sides with American football, too, with 16 HDTVs airing the NFL Sunday Ticket. The bar also roots for D.C. teams and the New York Mets, Giants, and Syracuse University. On-site entertainment includes darts, Monday trivia, and monthly spelling bee contests. 2471 18th Street NW

SILVER SPRING—Chef Jeffeary Miskiri, the owner of H Street’s long-running Po Boy Jim and the newish Creole on 14th, expands to downtown Silver Spring with the opening of Miss Toya’s Creole House. Menu highlights include Creole spice-blasted wings, shrimp and grits, whole roasted Cajun snapper, loaded gumbo, and oysters plenty of ways. The bar puts its spin on New Orleans favorites like a Hurricane, sazerac, and spiked Louisiana tea. Sibling spot Miss Toya’s Southern Cajun Kitchen is en route to Southeast’s Shops at Penn Branch shopping center. 923 Ellsworth Drive Silver Spring, Maryland

ASHBURN, VIRGINIA—Roving food truck Rebel Taco breaks into suburbia with a huge 5,000-square-foot location for Loudoun County. The menu features familiar taco favorites on corn and flour tortillas, options for vegetarians, and a color-soaked bar sending out all sorts of tequila drinks. Rebel Taco, which has a truck at Clarendon beer garden The Lot, unveiled its long-awaited K Street NW outpost earlier this month. 22850 Brambleton Plaza, Ashburn, Virginia

OXON HILL, MARYLAND—California chain Pekoe Tea Bar expanded to the East Coast on Friday, August 19, bringing MGM National Harbor milk and fruit teas, smoothies, and coffees in the casino’s atrium. Star-shaped mango bobs inside a Kawaii (green tea infused with red guava, mango and passion fruit), while an icy Fire Melon features Tajin and watermelon chunks. For a pre-gambling jolt, there’s super strong Vietnamese coffee topped with caramel custard. Hours are 11 a.m. to 1 a.m. daily. 101 MGM National Avenue, Oxon Hill, Maryland

California import Pekoe Tea Bar brings boba tea drinks to MGM National Harbor.
Pekoe Tea Bar

SOUTHEAST—Maryland-born Fuji Hibachi and Sushi opened Monday, August 8, at Ward 7’s Skyland Town Center. The 1,500-square-foot restaurant sends out sushi and Japanese dishes on a carryout-only basis to start (11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. daily). Fuji will add sit-down service this fall — making it the first full-service eatery at the shopping center. 2714 Good Hope Road SE

UPPER NORTHWEST—Boston’s fast-grown bakery Tatte opened at the splashy new City Ridge complex on Wednesday, August 24, with lattes and pastries starting at 7 a.m. daily. Tatte is the mixed-use development’s inaugural dining establishment to open, and King Street Oyster Bar, Taco Bamba, and others will soon follow. The city’s first Wegmans debuted across the street earlier this summer. 13 Ridge Square NW

MT. PLEASANT—D.C.’s wildly popular breakfast taco pop-up La Tejana swings open its first standalone store on Saturday, August 6. The 2020 fan favorite of Washington Post food columnist Tim Carman brings the upper Northwest neighborhood a true taste of the tiny taquerias its co-founder Ana-Maria Jaramillo frequented growing up in Texas. La Tejana honors Rio Grande Valley’s beloved border cuisine with five opening tacos — all served on homemade flour tortillas — like the “956” with eggs, bacon, potatoes, refried beans, queso, and cilantro ($4.50 each; three for $13; or six for $24). Open Wednesday to Sunday, 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., with drip and cold brew coffee too. 3211 Mt. Pleasant Street NW

MT. VERNON TRIANGLE—Roving food truck Rebel Taco unveiled its long-awaited K Street NW outpost on Friday, August 5. The 1,600-square-foot, graffiti-soaked space with a leaf-lined patio out front sports a Day of the Dead look with bright neon colors and skull logos. Corn and flour tortillas are topped with meaty fillings like barbacoa and chorizo, plus options for vegetarians and plans to hand patrons frozen margaritas through a bar window. Rebel Taco also maintains a truck at its Clarendon beer garden The Lot. 508 K Street NW

BALLSTON—Hawkers Street Asian Fare brings a variety dim sum, tiki drinks, and curries to Ballston on Thursday, August 4. The anticipated location, two years in the making, takes up a 4,380-square-foot corner of the Ballston Exchange complex. Founded in 2011 in Orlando, the fast-growing chain made its D.C. area debut at Bethesda Row in 2020. Its first location in Virginia is a little smaller than its Maryland counterpart. Hawkers, which pays homage to “hawker” street food stalls found across bustling night markets in Asia, is known for its Malaysian flat breads and other recipes from co-founder Allen Lo’s family. 4201 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, Va.

July 2022

ADAMS MORGAN—The 18th Street NW nightlife strip welcomed a cheerful destination for pastries wrapped in homemade dough at the end of July. Mola Empanada’s Panamanian-Caribbean menu stars savory selections like braised chicken curry with red bell peppers; chickpea curry with coconut milk; or a picadillo beef variety with a hint of cinnamon. Born as a pop-up, Mola’s debut storefront also offers a pan-fried section of plantains (patacones) and yucca fries, plus Panamanian breads coming soon. 2438 18th Street NW

NAVY YARD—Chicken + Whiskey, the popular South American rotisserie shop and whiskey bar on 14th Street NW since 2017, adds a bigger, follow-up location right next to Nationals Park on Saturday, July 30. Star Latin chef and partner Enrique Limardo (Seven Reasons, Immigrant Food, Imperfecto) designs a menu full of slow-roasted chickens brined for 12 hours and Venezuelan arepas to go along with a lengthy list of domestic and international whiskey pours. Unlike the narrow layout of the original — a chicken joint in the front, with a speakeasy tucked behind a refrigerator door in the back — Chicken + Whiskey puts its two components side-by-side in Navy Yard with roll-up garage doors spanning the length of the facade. 70 N Street SE

DOWNTOWN—Immigrant Food+, the nearly year-old destination for artsy global plates and dim sum in the literary-themed Planet Word museum, unveiled a new Negroni patio on Tuesday, July 26. The beloved summertime cocktail, comprised of equal parts gin, Campari and sweet vermouth, takes center stage across its peaceful patio out back. In Immigrant Food+ fashion, the Negroni gets a few global twists with spirits from France, Italy, and India. There’s six types to choose from ($15 each), and patrons can taste three as part of a $21 flight. The patio is open Tuesdays to Saturdays. 925 13th Street NW

REAGAN NATIONAL—Fuel up before a flight at Elevation Burger’s brand new locale at Terminal E inside the airport. Founded in 2002, the health-conscious patty pioneer known for its grass-fed burgers and olive oil-cooked fries also sends out ice cream shakes, cage-free chicken sandwiches, onion rings battered in gluten-free breading, and meat-free proteins.

Elevation Burger touched down at Reagan Washington National Airport on Tuesday, July 26.
Elevation Burger

ALEXANDRIA—Frank Pepe Pizzeria Napoletana, the iconic New Haven-style pizza parlor out of Connecticut, opens its second D.C. area location on Monday, July 18 at the Alexandria Commons Shopping Center. Founded nearly 100 years ago, the cult chain maintains a devoted New England following for its chewy, coal-fired pies with a thin, oblong crust and charred finish. The first area outpost opened at Bethesda’s Westfield Montgomery Mall this spring. 3231 Duke Street, Alexandria, Va.

DEL RAY—Elo’s Italian, the rustic Italian pop-up that took residency in Live Oak during the pandemic, has permanently replaced the Southern restaurant. Named for executive chef and owner Justus Frank’s daughter, family-friendly Elo’s serves pastas, flatbreads, charcuterie, cocktails, and wine. 1603 Commonwealth Avenue, Alexandria, Va.

UPPER NORTHWEST—D.C.’s first-ever Wegmans opened on Wednesday, July 13, with in-store dining options (Burger Bar and Pizza Shop); a raw bar with poke bowls and sushi; a bakery with homemade pastries and doughnuts; and Buzz coffee shop, plus 500 types of spirits, vermouths, and sakes. 41 Ridge Square NW

BETHESDA—Pizza TBD, Ensemble Digital Kitchen’s newest delivery and takeout brand, debuted in early July with a unique Roman-meets-Detroit style that relies on a 40-hour ferment. Opening offerings include a “Truffle Shuffle” and “Pep Boi” pie. The Steve Salis-run ghost kitchen also sends out eats from his Bib Gourmand-designated Honeymoon Chicken and Federalist Pig. 4856 Cordell Avenue, Bethesda, Md.

Pizza TBD combines airy and pan pizza styles.
Pizza TBD

SILVER SPRING—DMV food truck Trippy Tacos unveiled its first restaurant in Silver Spring starring tacos on homemade corn tortillas. There’s also quesadillas, nachos, tortas, and burritos, plus new breakfast offerings, loaded nacho fries, and a pupusa pizza. 12134 Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, Md.

DOWNTOWN—CitySwing’s first permanent golf studio opened on Thursday, July 7, with simulator rentals and lessons. Starting in early August, the bar and lounge will go live with a full food and beverage program. 901 New York Avenue NW

SILVER SPRING—Last fall the iconic home to Mrs. K’s Tollhouse flipped into an all-day venture called Zinnia, making use of its tavern and garden spaces. A stylish cafe joined the mix on Wednesday, July 6, with Counter Culture coffee drinks and full breakfast and lunch menus. 9201 Colesville Road, Silver Spring, Md.

Pastries served out of Zinnia’s new cafe portion.

DISTRICT HEIGHTS—Chef Damien Brown has new neon-lit, pop art-filled place to stock his whimsical sweets. Uncaged Desserts opened in early July with bourbon peach cobbler and Samosas cookie puddings, lemon bar cakes, and cheesecake slices stuffed with oatmeal cream and cherry. Swing by from noon to 7 p.m. 6031 Marlboro Pike, District Heights, Md.

June 2022

ALEXANDRIA—Jollibee, the worldwide fast-food chain from the Philippines with a hyper-loyal fanbase, brings buckets of fried chicken and other favorites to Alexandria. Some 2,500 guests showed up to the opening in late June at the Plaza at Landmark shopping center. Its first D.C. area location debuted a year ago in Wheaton, Md. 4809 Beauregard Street, Alexandria, Va.

Jollibee’s buckets of fried “chickenjoy” with brown gravy, sweet cheesy spaghetti loaded with hot dogs and ham, and peach mango handpies.

WEST END—Bandoola Bowl, the Southeast Asian salad shop that debuted in Georgetown 2019, is the newest vendor inside Western Market food hall. Flavors from Burma, Vietnam, and Thailand make their way into customized salads or warm bowls. Pick a spicy rice noodle or brown rice base can be topped with an array of proteins, spices, fruits, vegetables, and garnishes. Upcoming events on-site include a pet adoption event on Wednesday, July 20, and live music on Thursday, July 28. 2000 Pennsylvania Avenue NW

ADAMS MORGAN—Jerk at Nite, the popular food truck founded by Howard University alumni, adds a new nightlife-driven location to enjoy its modern Jamaican menu and cocktails. 2406 18th Street NW

CHINATOWN—The space that formerly housed Honeygrow flipped into fast-casual Chinese food spot Wasai, serving dumplings, stir-fried noodles, wonton soup, pulled pork buns from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. 716 7th Street NW

SPRING VALLEY—Aussie-styled coffee roaster Bluestone Lane debuted its third D.C. cafe in Spring Valley in mid-June with its familiar flat whites, avo smash toasts, and new fried chicken sandwiches. Order pick-up, dine-in, or delivery via its app from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily. 4874 Massachusetts Avenue NW