Medals, medals, and more medals!

Bristow, Virginia-based MurLarkey Distilled Spirits was awarded five medals by the American Distilling Institute as part of its 2017 Judging of Craft Spirits. Divine Clarity Vodka won gold in the grain-to-glass vodka category. Brutality Limited Reserve Whiskey, Cincerity Whiskey, Justice White Whiskey, and Imagination Gin were awarded bronze medals. This was the most medals won by any Virginia distillery in 2017. Hence, they have stepped up their tastings in D.C.!

Addie’s is back:
Black Restaurant Group reopened the legendary Addie’s, named for Jeff Black’s grandmother, in the new Park Potomac development. The August 22 opening date had special meaning, as Addie’s opened 22 years ago. Yes, they will still serve Addie’s mussels and Addie’s rolls, legacies that persist as best-selling items on other Black Restaurant menus. There is also a six-seat oyster bar, as well as an outdoor patio. Black Restaurant Group veterans Executive Chef Dane Sewlall and General Manager Doug Doyle are part of the team. Black Restaurant Group includes Black Salt Restaurant & Fish Market, Pearl Dive Oyster Palace, Black Jack Bar, and Tilt Sidebar, Black Market Bistro, Black’s Bar and Kitchen, Republic Takoma Park, and Addie’s.

How about a deposit slip with that croissant?
McLean-based Capital One has begun rolling out a new cafe concept with 21 locations in eight states, and it now plans to open its first two in the District. Capital One Cafés will open in Georgetown at the 3150 M Street, NW building, where Nathan’s used to be, and in Penn Quarter at 732 7th Street, NW, where RadioShack and Sprint used to be. Both locations are planned to open in late 2018. The bank/cafe concept features coffee, pastries, free WiFi, lounge seating, ATMs, meeting rooms, and bank advice.

Quick Hits:
Adams Morgan musical chairs — in the spot that used to be Ben Tre Vietnamese Cuisine (and before that, Yamas) is now #1 Juicy Cajun Seafood at 2418 18th Street, NW, which is next to another newly relocated (from Shaw) Indian restaurant, Zenebech Injera. Mr. Chen’s Organic Chinese Food will be coming to the Nam-Viet space at 3419 Connecticut Ave, NW. Tony Tomelden of The Pug in NE, D.C. and John Solomon of Solly’s at 11th & U Streets, NW and Brookland’s Finest in NE, D.C., plan to open a bar next to Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab on 15th Street, NW called Union Trust, probably because it’s in the Union Trust Building. Adam Greenberg plans to open Coconut Club near Union Market next spring with island-inspired small plates and tropical fresh juice cocktails in the 3,000-square-foot restaurant. The Hawaiian-themed cocktail program will lead with rum. Jason Maddens will open Ah-So, a wine-focused restaurant with a modern American menu, at the Brambleton Town Center. He was previously at Clarity in Vienna, Va.
Legal Sea Foods has launched a smaller-sized restaurant geared towards airports and train stations, called Legal C Bar. Although it has a long history at DCA, it will now open this smaller (71-seat) branded concept at Union Station. It opened Legal C Bar locations in shopping centers as well as in Boston’s Logan International Airport, where Legal Sea Foods has run a restaurant for years.

Just Opened:
The rise of Filipino food spills across the river. Popular D.C. mixologist Jo-Jo Valenzuela and his wife Christina teamed up with Manny Tagle and Solita Wakefield to open Bistro 1521 at 8900 N. Glebe Road in Arlington, where Applebee’s used to be. The Filipino restaurant is named in honor of the year that Ferdinand Magellan discovered the Philippines. This restaurant received a Filipino blessing, as Tagle’s brother, Luis Antonio G. Tagle, is the Archbishop of Manila. Pinstripes opened in Rockville’s Pike & Rose. McAlister’s opened a new Northern Virginia location at 10691 Braddock Road in Fairfax. It’s next to George Mason University and is owned by franchisees Steve and Heather Ricks. The pair own two other McAlister’s locations, one in Front Royal and one in Herndon.

Chef Updates:
Drew Adams is the executive chef at Bourbon Steak at Four Seasons Hotel Washington, D.C. He was previously at Rose’s Luxury, Marcel’s, and Plume at The Jefferson Hotel. Joe Palma is now leading the culinary team at Isabella Eatery in Tysons Corner. He was the previous executive chef at Bourbon Steak. Yasmani Castellanos is the new general manager at Taberna del Alabardero. Chad Cortner is the new general manager at Casolare, at the Kimpton Glover Park Hotel. Robert Aikens is executive chef at Espita Mezcaleria on 14th Street, NW. Shelby McCrone is executive sous chef at Kyirisan. Tracy O’Grady is the new chef at The Bird.
Adams Morgan landmark, The Black Squirrel, which opened in Dunn Loring, also plans to open a second Northern Virginia location in JBG Smith’s RTC West development, adjacent to Reston Town Center, joining Starbucks, Coopers Hawk Winery, Nando’s Peri-Peri, BGR The Burger Joint, and honeygrow.

About the Author

Linda Roth is president of Linda Roth Associates, Inc. specializing in marketing, promotions and publicity in the hospitality industry. Contact Linda at 202-888-3571 or or visit her website at

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