Maggiano’s Opens in Springfield
Maggiano’s Little Italy opened at the new Springfield Town Center, formerly the Springfield Mall, at 6500 Springfield Mall on Oct. 17. This is Maggiano’s 49th restaurant and joins others in Chevy Chase and Tysons Corner.
The Springfield restaurant seats 279 in two dining rooms and the bar and another 28 on the patio. It added about 150 jobs in the area.
Executive chef and managing partner Manny Duron and Fairfax County Supervisor Jeffrey McKay cut a 10-foot fettuccine ribbon after mall officials opened the rebuilt shopping center as managing partner Todd Crisson, president Steve Provost, the 150-member staff and others looked on. The restaurant also gave the Make-A-Wish Foundation’s Mid-Atlantic chapter a check for $5,081.63, proceeds from alcohol sales at its friends and family night earlier in the month.
The restaurant will serve Maggiano’s signature dishes such as its Rigatoni “D,” as well as rotating seasonal dishes. The kitchen also offers the new “Lighter Take” menu, which features new preparations of classic dishes, including chicken parmesan and fettuccine alfredo, which deliver the same flavors and generous portions with at least one-third fewer calories.
Another menu feature Maggiano’s brings to Springfield is “On the House Classic Pastas,” which sends guest who orders one of eight pastas home with a second Classic Pasta of their choice. Since launching this offer in 2009, Maggiano’s has given away more than 11 million Classic Pastas, keeping true to the thriving spirit of generosity which originated in Little Italy neighborhoods where no guest went home without leftovers in their hands.
Following the pasta-cutting ceremony, we got to sample some of Maggiano’s classic dishes served family style including appetizers such as crispy zucchini frittes with lemon aioli, which were delicious, calamari frittes with marinara sauce, which are tender from being soaked in buttermilk overnight, and the chopped salad with crispy prosciutto, tomatoes, blue cheese, avocado and house dressing. For entrees, the staff brought out plates of chicken marsala with mushrooms and marsala sauce, which with my favorite because it was juicy and pounded thin with whole mushrooms; chicken picatta with capers and lemon butter, tasty but a bit dry; Taylor Street baked ziti with Italian sausage, pomodoro sauce and Italian cheese blend; the Rigitoni “D” with herb roasted chicken, mushrooms, marsala cream sauce and caramelized onions, which give the dish a sweet taste; and the lighter take fettuccine Alfred with hand-cut fettuccine, grilled chicken, asparagus and light asiago cream sauce.
Of course, as any good Italian meal should be, we finished with dessert including New York-style cheesecake with strawberries, which was decadent; tiramisu made from ladyfingers soaked in espresso with mascarpone cheese; and chocolate zuccotto bites, bite-sized portions of its chocolate zuccotto caked made with Sambuca mousse.
Maggiano’s in Springfield is open from 11:30 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11:30 a.m.-11 p.m. on Friday and Saturday, and noon-9 p.m. on Sunday.
Second State opens Tuesday; will charge $1 for ice
Copperfield Tavern’s Reese Gardner will open his Second State Restaurant, a Pennsylvania-themed eatery, on Oct. 21 at 1831 M St. NW at the old Mighty Pint location. The restaurant is named for Gardner’s home state of Pennsylvania, which was the second state to ratify the Constitution, and will be the source of many if its food and spirits.
Corporate executive chef Allan Javery’s seasonal menu change four times a year and feature American small bites along with featured prime cuts of local game, farm-raised poultry, beef and fresh fish to accompany the hearty, family-style sides. Every ingredient will be sourced from local farmers within a three-hour drive of D.C., with an emphasis on farms in Pennsylvania.
A menu carryover from Mighty Pint is the pierogies, or polish dumplings, but these will be homemade, filled with mashed potatoes and cheddar cheese, and sautéed with bacon and caramelized onions in brown butter. Other Pennsylvania dishes include roasted pheasant with pan-roasted pear onions, apples and a cider jus; a venison chop rubbed with coffee and cocoa and topped with blackberry compote; roasted tea-smoked duck breast with poached pears and blueberry jus; and a pecan-crusted trout filet with beer butter. All the proteins come a la carte and are priced from $19-$36. Starters, small plates and shared sides are all separate.
The bar program, spearheaded by corporate beverage program director Boris Stojkovic, will incorporate fresh, local, seasonal ingredients found in the homemade syrups and mixers. Guests will enjoy freshly squeezed juices for cocktails, and a large selection of 29 rye whiskeys. Cocktails range from $11-$17 and the ryes range from $9-$33.
But drinkers beware, if you want your drinks on the rock, it will cost you $1 more (per rock). Crushed ice will be free. Bar manager Phil Clark told the Washington City Paper that the ice is worth the extra charge because it doesn’t have the “minerally taste” of less ice. It’s also “unclouded,” meaning it doesn’t have the bubbles and cracks of normal ice cubes that Clark says can change the experience of a cocktail. Second State’s ice will come from D.C. boutique ice company Favourite Ice.
Local designer Maggie O’Neill of SwatchRoom, who also designed Copperwood Tavern, also designed Second State. The restaurant, which seats 69 in the dining room and another 12 at the bar, has a palette of creamy bleached wood, steel blues and warm grays with exposed beams and a polished concrete floor on the first level. Iron and crystal mixed with distressed metals and a few historic artifacts will pepper the space and speak to materials indigenous to Pennsylvania including Pennsylvania Dutch hex signs and old Pennsylvania hunting licenses. The second floor includes a wall of windows, corrugated metal, and blue, gray and cream upholstery with semi private booths.
Second State will be open daily for lunch from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Friday and for dinner from 5-10 p.m. seven days a week. Brunch will be served from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. “Oyster Hour” with $1 oysters will be available from 5-6 p.m. Monday through Friday.
City Tap House hosts pumpkin smash with Elysian Brewing
City Tap House, the craft beer-focused restaurant at 901 9th Street, NW, will host Dick Cantwell, co-founder of Seattle’s Elysian Brewing Co., from 5 p.m.-closing at 1 a.m. on Oct. 20.
Elysian has brewed over 350 craft beers since it opened in 1996. On Monday, seven City Tap House draft lines will be dedicated to Elysian’s popular pumpkin beers including Night Owl Pumpkin Ale; The Great Pumpkin Imperial Pumpkin Ale; Dark O’ the Moon; Punkuccino; The Lost Abbey Sardonic Pumpkin Dark Wit; The Gourdfather; and Hansel & Gretel. Prices range from $6-$13.
Also, City Tap House has purchased a 250-pound pumpkin from Nalls Farm Market in Berryville, Va., which will be hollowed out, filled with beer and tapped just like a keg.
Sonoma celebrates American cheese month throughout October
Sonoma Restaurant and Wine Bar, 223 Pennsylvania Ave. SE , is celebrating National American Cheese Month throughout October by showcasing its American artisanal cheese collection with a Thursday happy hour from 4:30-7:30 p.m. featuring chef Josh Hutter’s selection of three hard-to-find, unconventional and downright stinky American cheeses. The happy hour will also offer a wine flight to accompany the chef’s cheese selection.
The cheeses include Humboldt Fog from Cypress Grove Chevre in California, Point Reyes Original Blue from Farmstead Cheese Co. in California and Grayson from Meadow Creek Dairy in Virginia. The cheese flight is $13 during happy hour and $15 other nights. Wines, which are $16 during happy hour and $18 other times include a 2011 Man O’ War Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand, a 2013 Giacomo Bologna “Braida” from Ital and a NV Emilio Hidalgo “Gobernador” from Spain.
On Oct. 30 from 4:30-6:30 p.m., Sonoma will host a free artisanal cheese and wine tasting with Hutter, wine program director Woong Chang and local cheesemakers.
American Cheese Month is a celebration of North America’s diverse cheeses, and the farmers, cheesemakers, retailers, cheesemongers and chefs who bring them to the table. The celebration of American-made cheese was Created by the American Cheese Society and held annually throughout the month of October.
Jack Rose Dining Saloon host fall carnival on Oct. 25
Jack Rose Dining Saloon, 2007 18th St. NW, will host “Tour de Fall Carnival” – an afternoon beer carnival with a New Belgium tap takeover, from noon-5 p.m. on Oct. 25 celebrating Colorado-based brewery New Belgium’s fall beer line-up.
The roof-top carnival will feature beer floats, psychic readings, a photo booth, carnie games like bottle ring toss and “guess your weight in beer” along with carny fare such as corn dogs, cotton candy, and popcorn from executive chef Russell Jones.
The beers include New Belgium’s newest fall releases. The free party will include $5 specials on New Belgium drafts including La Folie, a sour brown ale; Le Terroir, a dry-hopped sour ale; Pumpkick, a limited-release spiced pumpkin cranberry ale; 1554, a black lager; Hop the Pond, a double IPA; Tour de Fall, an Amarillo and Cascade dry-hopped pale ale; Ranger IPA, a dry-hopped American IPA; Abbey, a Belgian-style Dubbel; Fat Tire, a Belgian amber ale; and Rampant IPA, an Imperial IPA.
No carnival is complete without games and prizes. Guests can play several carnie games for free – like testing their taste buds on the “Sour Your Face Off” Wheel, playing “Pin the Mustache on the Ranger” or blind taste-testing New Belgium brews to win tokens to exchange for prizes.
Zaytinya to host Mario Batali on Oct. 26
Next Sunday, Zaytinya will host Italian chef, former Iron Chef and host of ABC’s The Chew Mario Batali for a special mezze lunch crafted by Zaytinya chef Michael Costa in celebration of Batali’s new book, America: Farm to Table, co-authored with The Washington Post‘s Jim Webster.
The event will take place at Zaytinya on Oct. 26 starting at 12:30 p.m. Seating is limited, and the $95 ticket price includes a multi-course menu featuring several dishes from the cookbook, special wine offering, tax and gratuity and a signed copy of the cookbook. Ticket are available https://nvite.com/MarioatZaytinya/marioatzaytinya here.
A portion of the proceeds will support FRESHFARM markets.
D.C. chef Richard Sandoval publishes cookbook
Chef Richard Sandoval, who owns Masa 14, Zengo, Ambar, Toro Toro and El Centro D.F. in the DMV, has published a new cookbook, Richard Sandoval’s New Latin Flavors, which includes 125 recipes.
Sandoval grew up in Mexico City. In 1997 he opened his flagship New York restaurant, Maya, after gaining the attention of New Yorkers with his contemporary French restaurants, Savann and Savann Est. His 35 concepts that reflect his interest in pan-Latin cuisines are located in Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Nevada, New York, Virginia and Washington, D.C., as well as in Dubai, Mexico, Qatar and Serbia.
The cookbook, which hit bookstores on Oct. 13, is also available at all of his restaurants for $29.95. The collection of recipes offers a new vision of contemporary Latin cooking. Many of them are inspired by his popular restaurants including quesadillas, ceviches, arepas and enchiladas, and are streamlined for the home chef.
Each page offers unique dishes and cultural fusions such as the meeting of Japan and Mexico with Sandoval’s togarashi tuna in mini won ton bowl, Tex-Mex with brisket nachos with chipotle Cheese Sauce, and Venezuelan corn pancakes with American tomato jam and cheese.
Sandoval has also concocted cocktails to accompany the plates. He features traditional Latin spirits — tequila, mezcal, cachaça, rum and pisco. A variety of salsas, guacamoles, and other cocktail snacks are offered to get the party started.
Photographer Penny De Los Santos provided the images. She is a senior contributing photographer to Saveur, and her work has appeared in numerous cookbooks and publications ranging from National Geographic to Paris Match.
Matt Zagorski is new executive chef at Cuba Libre
Cuba Libre Restaurant & Rum Bar, 801 9th Street, NW Suite A, appointed Matthew Zagorski its new executive chef. He will spearhead the kitchen in Washington, D.C. under the direction of two-time James Beard award-winning chef-partner Guillermo Pernot.
Zagorski joins Cuba Libre in D.C. after training at the restaurant’s flagship location in Philadelphia under Pernot. In his new position, Zagorski will oversee the menu and kitchen staff.
A Pennsylvania native, Zagorski joined GuestCounts Hospitality in 2013 and immediately began training at Cuba Libre’s Philadelphia location. He was responsible for the day-to-day kitchen operations and overseeing the culinary and stewarding staff of over 30 chefs and culinary personnel.
He has more than 15 years of restaurant industry experience. A graduate of the Pennsylvania Institute for Culinary Arts, he launched his career by working under chef Terrence Fuery at Philadelphia’s Striped Bass. There Zagorski worked through all stations of the kitchen, later becoming both saucier and morning sous chef. He also worked at notable Philadelphia restaurants LaCroix at the Rittenhouse Hotel and Rouge98. While at Rouge98, Zagorski was named one of the Top Ten Chefs of Philadelphia. He was also invited to participate in the South Beach Miami Burger Bash.
In 2009, Zagorski teamed up with Rob Wasserman to conceptualize and open 500 Degrees, a burger joint in Philadelphia. From there, he pursued work in consulting, assisting with new concepts and the openings of local restaurants. In December 2011, Zagorski opened his first solo project, Hickory Lane American Bistro. In 2013, he left his position as executive chef and partner in order to join Cuba Libre.