Isabella to Open Arroz in Marriott Marquis
Chef and restaurateur Mike Isabella plans to open Arroz, a Southern Spain and Tangier-inspired restaurant, in the Marriott Marquis Washington in early 2017.
This will be the fifth and final restaurant in the hotel at 901 Massachusetts Ave. NW in the Mount Vernon Square neighborhood across from the convention center. It will join the Dignitary whisky bar, High Velocity sports bar, the lobby bar and three-meal-a-day restaurant Anthem, which are all run by Marriott. It replaces Mercadito that Chicago restaurateur Alfredo Sandoval planned to build in the space on the 10th Street side of the hotel’s lobby, but which fell through.
Marriott hopes that the signature restaurant run by the celebrity chef, who appeared on season six of Top Chef and Top Chef Duels and was the runner-up on Top Chef All-Stars, will draw more locals into the property.
Arroz will be open for lunch and dinner seven days a week, as well as weekend brunch, and will focus on the cuisines of Valencia, Andalusia and Portugal, incorporating dishes from Tangier along with other North African influences. The concept will also be included in the 10-concept Isabella Eatery that will open later in 2017 at Tysons Galleria.
Natalie Park Design Studio will design the 246-seat restaurant that includes 124 seats in the dining room, 48 in the bar and lounge, 62 on an outdoor terrace with fire pits and 12 in a private dining area. It will feature a contemporary interpretation of Moroccan and Spanish architecture, motifs and colors.
There won’t be the usual cheese plates or Iberico ham like is found on the menu of José Andrés Jaleo (Isabella worked for Andrés at Zaytinya). The Southern Spanish menu will feature dishes such as paella and soupy rice along with fideos and regional tapas. There will also be selections from Portugal and Morocco including vegetable and seafood tagines and family-style dishes native to the Canary Islands. More familiar dishes like pan con tomate, gambas al ajillo and patatas bravas will be prepared Southern style. Arroz will also offer a selection of montaditos, bocadillos and croquetas, as well as egg-based dishes and large-format items.
The beverage menu will lean heavily Spanish and Portuguese with plenty of Iberian wine, including a number from the Toro, Rueda and Ribera del Duero regions. Cocktails will include several varieties of sangria, as well as gin and exclusively Spanish-made tonics. A large sherry and port list will explore interesting Spanish and Portuguese vintages of both.
“My favorite thing about dining in Spain is the incredible variety of the cuisine,” Isabella said. “Spaniards have strong regional identity, and it shows in their food culture. You can enjoy paella in Valencia, then drive down the coast a bit and experience completely different flavors and ingredients. Not many U.S. restaurateurs focus on Southern Spain, Northern Africa and Portugal. Those regions of the world heavily influence each other’s art, architecture and food, and those unique flavors are exactly what we are aiming to capture at Arroz.”
Not Your Average Joe’s opens in Silver Spring
Not Your Average Joe’s opened July 12 in downtown Silver Spring’s Ellsworth Place, 8661 Colesville Road. It is the chain’s 26th restaurant and the sixth in the DMV.
The restaurant serves made-from-scratch dishes like chicken caprese, lemon and basil marinated grilled chicken with a salad of arugula, tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and shaved romano cheese tossed in a light lemon vinaigrette; seared rosemary skewered scallops served over a succotash of Israeli couscous, grilled corn, bacon and tomatoes with an orange-chipotle glaze; and a mustard-crusted chicken BLT made with mustard and panko crusted chicken, country bacon, lettuce, tomato, tangy slaw and lemon aioli on toasted ciabatta.
The summer menu, which will be served through October, includes spice-rubbed pork tenderloin served with summer vegetable ratatouille and preserved lemon-mint couscous; grilled chimichurri flank steak with Mexican street corn and black bean rice; and a watermelon-feta salad with candied pistachios, arugula and spinach in a light lemon dressing. The restaurant also has a gluten-free menu.
The full service bar serves craft cocktails, beer and wine.
Bindaas to replace Bardeo in Cleveland Park
Knightsbridge Restaurant Group is incorporating Bardeo, 3309 Connecticut Ave. NW, into the neighboring Ardeo and replacing it with Bindaas, a 50-seat restaurant and bar, which will feature Indian street food and set to open next month.
The menu will feature savory snacks and kebabs with vegetarian options, as well as pork, fish, chicken and beef street food priced from $9-$14. Group executive chef Vikram Sunderman designed the menu that includes dishes such as pathar gosht, a lamb kebab cooked in a stone oven served over a bed of saffron rice with saffron and cashews; uttapam, a fermented rice pancake with lentils and shrimp pepper; bhel puri, a seaside snack from Bombay with raw mangoes, lentils and puffed rice; and the kati roll with goan pork.
The beverage program will include an international wine list, Indian beers and whiskey, along with craft cocktails reflecting the spirits and spices of India. A meal at Bindaas will be in the $40-$45 per person range.
Martin Vahtra of Projects Design Associates of New York is designing the new restaurant. The interior will incorporate new flooring, acoustical tiles, new furnishings and a new mural. The open kitchen will become a test kitchen for the chefs to create everyday Indian “delicacies.” The exterior will be a new “Indian silk teal” color. Inside, there will be a wood wall of rustic reclaimed beams, influenced by Indian screens and shutters. As diners turn the corner, they will see a custom mural representing Indian graffiti and street life. New fabrics and paint will add a punch of jewel tone color to the space. Custom pendant lighting made from baskets will be added as a nod to the food markets of India along with new bar top lights. The back bar has been redesigned with new display shelves
The restaurant will open with dinner service and brunch will follow. Diners will also be able to book a reception in the 40-seat upstairs private dining room at Ardeo with its private deck patio, and have the food catered from Bindaas.
Vinoteca launches new summer dinner, brunch menus
New executive chef Anna Miller of Vinoteca, 1940 11th St. NW, has introduced new summer dinner and brunch menus. Diners can now expect dishes like handmade burrata, grilled seafood, fruit-forward desserts and other dishes with summer flavors of tomato, cucumber, strawberry and rhubarb.
New dinner items include scallops with edamame succotash, Chinese sausage, quail egg and forbidden black rice; salmon mousse with pickled grape leaves, cucumber, scallion and crackers; artichokes with potato confit, nori aïoli, preserved lemon and spinach purée; grilled octopus with bagna cauda, ricotta gnocchetti, broccoli, tomato, dill and capers; and a new Champagne poached pear dessert with orange, mint, cardamom, coconut, pistachio and passion fruit sorbet.
There are also two new salads: the Asian-inspired Singapore salad with ground duck breast, vermicelli, curry, lemongrass, chili, mango, peanut and lime; and the fried calamari salad with kohlrabi, pepita, watercress, whey, lime, mint and sumac.
Heartier entrees include smoked chicken with green beans, grits, pecans and crispy chicken skin; handmade pappardelle with bison short rib, eggplant ragout and house ricotta; and beef cheeks with mushroom, pimentón potatoes, grilled onion and truffled demi-glace.
Miller has also incorporated wine into her dishes such as the mushroom tartine with a madeira reduction accompanying a trio of maitake, crimini and king oyster mushrooms on flaky puff pastry; the vino cheddar burger topped with red wine aïoli made from burgundy and pinot noir with Tillamook cheddar, avocado and cilantro; and a new dessert, the farm fruit shortbread for two with fresh strawberry, rhubarb, pink peppercorn and amaranth topped with a madeira Chantilly cream.
New brunch fare includes the bacon peanut butter sandwich with banana and honey on Multigrain; and the grilled chicken salad sandwich with tarragon and smoked jalapeño crema.
Brookland’s Finest serves Sunday fish and chicken fry
Brookland’s Finest Bar & Kitchen, 3126 12th St. NE, is featuring a family-style fish and chicken fry dinner on Sunday evenings during the summer.
The restaurant has partnered with District Fishwife to feature a local, sustainable fish, which will be served alongside its fried chicken Sunday dinners. The special is available every Sunday during dinner service and includes Adobo marinated fried chicken, beer battered fish, Fresno chili crab dipping sauce for the chicken, house-made tartar sauce and two seasonal sides at market. Recent fish varieties have included invasive species like snakehead and blue catfish.
Also, the bar has rolled out a new seasonal cocktail menu, featuring spirits exclusively from local and regional producers including Soul Glow made with Green Hat, lime juice, bitters, turmeric and Salt Water; Finest 75 with Ivy City gin, prosecco and a lemon twist; blood orange Brookland martini with Magnus vodka, Chambord, blood orange, lemon and pineapple; the District Mule with Green Hat gin, Catoctin Creek rye or Magnus vodka, lime juice and ginger beer; the Brookland Doli with infused vodka and Velvet Falernum; a Manhattan with Catoctin Creek rye whiskey, brandied cherries, sweet vermouth and bitters; and Bustin’ Loose with Catoctin Creek rye, berry-cayenne syrup, lemon juice and ginger.
Shophouse adds crispy spring rolls to menu
ShopHouse Southeast Asian Kitchen, which has locations in Chinatown, Dupont Circle, Georgetown, Union Station, Bethesda, North Bethesda, and Silver Spring, has added crispy spring rolls at all its restaurants in the DMV.
The dish includes two spring rolls filled with chicken, fresh vegetables and glass noodles, served with a chili-lime dip for $3.25.
Brewster’s Gaithersburg celebrates 10th anniversary
Bruster’s Real Ice Cream, 18519 N. Frederick Ave., Gaithersburg, in the Floor & Decor Shopping Center., will celebrate its 10th anniversary from 4:30-6:30 p.m. on Monday, July 18. During that time, anyone who is 10 years old will get a free small waffle cone. There will also be raffle drawings for free ice cream, sundaes and milkshakes, and Chuckles the Clown will make balloon creations.
“We are proud to have hired, trained and retained many local residents, most of them high school and college kids, as scoopers, ice cream makers and crew leaders,” said owner Bob Fischer. Two of the store’s first employees, Madison Ellis and Delany Tenca, who helped open the store, will be recognized for their 10 years of service.
Bruster’s ice cream is made fresh daily in small batches in the store. The menu includes more than 40 flavors daily from more than 200 selections in addition to sorbets, sherbets, Italian ices, yogurts and fat free/no sugar added ice creams. The shop also serves house-made waffle cones, milk shakes, banana splits, brownie sundaes and more, along with specialty cakes and pies for birthdays and celebrations.
Nezzar Battle new executive chef at 14K Restaurant
Nezzar Battle is the new executive chef at the 14K Restaurant and Lounge at The Hamilton Hotel, 1101 14th St. NW. Battle brings more than a decade of experience to his new, having previously worked at hotel and resort restaurants.
Battle comes from the Kessler Collection Bohemian Celebration Hotel in Orlando, Fla. Prior to his tenure there, Battle oversaw kitchen operations at the 4-Diamond Squaw Creek Resort in Lake Tahoe, Calif., as well as at Silver Tree Hotel in Aspen, Colo.
Battle said he will introduce some new dishes like tapas-style shared plates, seasonal seafood, seasonal local produce and nightly specials. He launched a Sunday brunch earlier this month focusing on “tapas style” a la carte choices and increased variety.
“I am well-aware of the popularity of Sunday brunch in the D.C. Metro area,” said Battle. “We will be providing our guests more of what they love in that regard, with a fresh spin and some delicious new flavors.”
New brunch items include garlic infused shrimp with heirloom tomato, burrata, micro basil and cherry balsamic glaze; short rib benedict with red wine braised short rib, spinach, crimini mushrooms, onions, grilled asparagus tips, Roma tomatoes, chives, shoe string potatoes, a poached egg and roasted red pepper hollandaise; fried green tomatoes with blue jumbo lump crab aioli, a sunny side egg, Old Bay infused arugula and cherry balsamic glaze; and chicken and red velvet waffles with bourbon pecan glaze.
Neiman Lee is Zengo’s new chef de cuisine
Neiman Lee is the new chef de cuisine at Zengo, 781 Seventh St. NW in Chinatown.
Born and raised in South Korea, Lee began his culinary career at the five-star Kolon Hotel in Gyeongji, South Korea, before graduating from Keimyung College University in Dae-Gu. He then accepted a position as a hot station sous chef at the Broi Restaurant in the Ariana Hotel in Dae-Gu. In 2006, he joined the South Korean National Army where he prepared and managed daily meals and banquets for 1,800 soldiers. After serving two years, Lee accepted the position of head chef at the three-star Anyjoy Western Contemporary Cuisine in Dae-Gu.
In 2009, he relocated to the U.S. and worked at restaurants including the Sinobi Japanese and Korean Fusion Restaurant and Big Y Restaurant Group in Pittsburgh, the Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course in Grantville, Pa., and at The Gettysburg Hotel in Gettysburg.
He enrolled in the International Culinary Center in New York City and earned his culinary arts degree in 2015 then worked as senior sous chef at the modern Japanese restaurant Zuma in New York before coming to Zengo in June.