Stellina Pizzeria’s Italian-born restaurateurs Antonio Matarazzo and Matteo Venini pivot past the popular neo-Neapolitan pies their 3-year-old Northeast flagship is known for with the surprise addition of a new wine and antipasti bar nearby. Marcellino Pane & Vino quietly opened this week on the glassy ground floor of the Gantry apartment complex (300 Morse Street NE). The stylish, soaring space with a 24-seat patio out front sends out seafood crudo, Italian cheeses and cured meats, bruschetta topped with smoked salmon and bresaola, cannoli, and flourless chocolate almond cake. A bountiful, 50-bottle wine list with 15 by-the-glass options showcases lots of red, white, and sparkling Italian varietals. A curved bar wrapped in slick orange tiles and 12 stools also serves digestifs like amaro, grappa, and limoncello, Negronis, spritzes, and Menabrea lagers. Hours are 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. (closed Mondays), with both happy hour and brunch kicking off next week.
Ethiopian-style fried chicken is en route to Shaw
Eater DC’s 2021 Chef of the Year Elias Taddesse, the Ethiopian-born owner of acclaimed Mt. Vernon Triangle burger bar Mélange, will open a fried chicken-focused takeout and delivery operation in Shaw this fall (1819 7th Street NW). Doro Soul Food’s fast-casual menu blasts American soul food favorites with Ethiopian flavors (think: doro wat-spiced macaroni and cheese sprinkled with injera and bread crumbs). Bone-in fried and char-grilled poultry comes in ascending spice levels of mild (naked), hot (berbere), and very hot (mit mita). Fried chicken-style tenders and sandwiches made from jackfruit and pea protein cater to vegans.
Speaking of burgers, Lucky Buns chef Alex McCoy will fuel up flyers at Reagan National Airport with a new outpost near Gate B, according to the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority. The Adams Morgan-born patty pad that recently expanded to Baltimore will soon add another D.C. location at the Wharf. [DCist]
A Starbucks big-wig helps Rasa expand
Rasa, the fast-growing counter for standout Indian bowls in D.C., Arlington, and Fairfax, just tapped the former chief operating officer of Starbucks to help speed up growth. Troy Alstead joins Rasa’s board of directors in a supervisory role, offering founders Sahil Rahman and Rahul Vinod clutch operational and financial advice. Alstead helped supersize Starbucks from 100 stores to a global company and is currently a board member of worldwide brands like Levi Strauss Co. and Harley Davidson.
Swing a sword at St. Regis’s new sabering class
The St. Regis Washington, D.C. now teaches the ceremonial art of sabering a bottle of Champagne with a sword. The new master class for locals and hotel guests starts at $450 and includes a 30-minute lesson, a bottle of Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label, a St. Regis-branded saber to take home, and light bites for six. During the class, one participant can saber a trial bottle of bubbly before trying their hand at the Veuve. The long-standing nightly ritual across St. Regis’s global portfolio dates back to 1904, when hotel founder John Jacob Astor IV would saber a bottle on-site to celebrate the transition from day to night.